Vanessa Pham is the CEO and cofounder of Omsom, a food brand offering “proud, loud” flavors and pantry shortcut kits combining all the sauces, aromatics, and seasonings you need for specific Asian dishes. The name originates in "om sòm," a Vietnamese phrase meaning noisy, rambunctious, or riotous. (Hear, hear!) The Hall of Femme honoree studied Sociology and Economics at Harvard, with a focus on systemic racism and social inequality in the US. In 2016, she got her start as a management consultant at Bain & Company, advising Fortune 500 CPGs on retail and growth strategy. “After a few years on this traditional path, I felt frustrated that I wasn’t able to put my energy and skills towards building the world that I wanted to see,” Vanessa says. “I was itching to share my ideas, beliefs and experiences as a Vietnamese-American woman. I wanted to build a platform to shape culture and national dialogues.”
Vanessa and her sister, cofounder Kim Pham, created Omsom to “reclaim the cultural integrity of Asian cuisines that are too often diluted in the mainstream grocery aisle.” They launched smack-dab in the middle of a pandemic and cultural reckoning, and as the daughters of Vietnamese refugees, they’ve baked diversity and social justice into every part of their brand. “Celebrating BIPOC communities and culture, equitable compensation, and the redistribution of capital” are at the heart of Omsom’s business model — and when Vanessa is not leading Omsom’s all-POC team, she offers her time and expertise at speaking engagements, on podcasts, and during bimonthly community office hours. Just like the ingredients in an Omsom pantry kit, Vanessa combined her unique skills and experience to create something truly delicious.Find Vanessa on Instagram.