Barbara Bradley Baekgaard in Vera Bradley's New York Store


GIRL BOSS: Vera Bradley is partnering with TLC reality competition TV show, “Girl Starter,” which is produced by Al Roker Entertainment.

The episode airs tonight at 7 p.m. on TLC. It features Vera Bradley cofounder and chief creative officer Barbara Bradley Baekgaard as a guest judge on the show, which began airing April 28.

Besides Baekgaard, the other judges on tonight’s episode are innovation expert, speaker and author Stephen Shapiro and Bonin Bough, media entrepreneur, investor and executive producer of “Cleveland Hustles” with LeBron James. The show’s host is Collete Davis, 23-year-old rally cross race car driver and entrepreneur.

This is the only episode where Baekgaard is a judge. She will return as a guest for the finale episode, which airs June 2.

“Girl Starter” is described as a blend of “Shark Tank,” “The Apprentice,” “Project Runway” and “American Idol.”

“Girl Starter” is aimed at empowering young female entrepreneurs between the ages of 18 and 24. The competition follows eight girls as they compete for seed funding. They embark on six steps of early phase business building from ideation through the pitch, and the show features challenges, guests stars and a grand prize of $100,000 for funding and services.

In tonight’s challenge, Baekgaard enlists Vera Bradley designers and artisans to oversee the girls building their perfect Starter bag, that a woman can carry from day to night. Baekgaard gives the girls the parameters and criteria for the design challenge and at the end, she determines which bag wins. The prize is that Vera Bradley will manufacture and sell the winning bag on their own web site, verabradley.com and on the Girl Starter Live Tour.

In addition to Vera Bradley, the show’s sponsors are Staples, Visa, Microsoft, Air Force, Klarbrunn and AT&T.

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