BCHS Grad Hooks 2 Sharks

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Anthem native Megan Johnson and her husband pitch their idea.

Over Thanksgiving weekend, Megan (Garner) Johnson appeared on the ABC show “Shark Tank” alongside her husband, Joe Johnson. Megan grew up in Anthem, attended Anthem School, and Gavilan Peak School back when the master-planned community was just getting started. A member of the Boulder Creek Class of 2009, Johnson went on to the University of Arizona.

The couple now lives in Michigan. That’s where they kicked their entrepreneurial spirit into high gear, when (like most inventors) they solved a real-life problem.

“My husband is 100 percent an entrepreneur. His dream became my dream when we decided to go for it,” Johnson said. “I consider myself an entrepreneur now as well.”

The Problem If you have ever mixed a powder-drink mix into a liquid then you’ll get it. As former college athletes, the Johnsons were often mixing protein drinks on the go after working out. The super-fine powders can be unfriendly when spilled and often leave a cloud of dust above the cup.

The Solution The couple developed a food-grade, dissolvable, serving-size packet of protein powder for people on the go. The outer layer dissolves in any liquid instantly when you shake it up.

shark tank
The “Shark Tank” sharks hear VADE’s pitch.

In the Tank In November they made high-energy pitch of their company, VADE, in front of the Shark Tank investors. One of the sharks didn’t care for the taste, but Megan and Joe remained positive, nailing side-by-side, standing backflips to end their pitch.

“We went in asking an investment in exchange for 10 percent [of the company],” Johnson told In&Out.

The Outcome Two investors saw their vision and the potential in future applications. Now their two-year-old company will have a boost of $700,000 from heavy hitters Alex Rodriguez and Mark Cuban.

“When the two went in together, we were open-minded to what they needed,” Johnson said.

Sharks now hold a 40 percent stake in the company.

“We have been through a lot of obstacles,” the hometown girl said. “My family in Arizona really helped us out. We still have friends and family in Anthem and they believed in us and that made us feel confident.”

So what’s next for VADE? Johnson says they’re working to grow their business and enjoying all the opportunities that have come from the TV appearance.


Help Save Our Community
Small businesses are the lifeblood of our country and even more so this community. Supporting local businesses during this crisis can help keep our community economically viable. Please strongly consider supporting the businesses below, In&Out Magazine's display advertisers, as well as those in the Classifieds section of the magazine (see the full April 9 issue in PDF form). Many of these businesses have been part of the fabric of this community for two decades, not just serving our professional, service and retail needs but stepping up to support local charities, sports teams and so much more. Tip: If you know you’ll need to schedule a service, consider contacting a local business you trust and paying the standard fee for the deferred service. The links below go to their web sites.

Adult & Pediatric Allergy Associates • 602-242-4592
Anthem Senior Living • 602-909-9550
Appliance Pros • 502-501-5501
Business Network of Anthem • 623-455-9630
Carroll Law Firm • 623-551-9366
Century 21 Real Estate - Jeff Huff • 623-223-1221
Creative Home Enhancements • 623-551-5409
Daisy Dream Homes Real Estate • 623-879-3277
Daisy Mountain Dentistry • 623-551-5250
Desert Foothills Air Conditioning • 480-595-0938
Edward Jones • 623-551-0523
Element Dental Centers • 623-551-5555
Hand & Stone Massage • 623-551-6602
Kendallwood Design • 602-252-3844
Kodiak Roofing • 602-501-7717
Luv My PC • 480-703-6609
Merrill Gardens • 623-201-4881
North Valley Water Solutions • 623-551-0515
Preferred Business of Anthem • 623-551-0523 
Prickett Realty • 623-551-8111
ProSkill Services • 623-551-7473
RE/MAX Professionals - Mike Higgins • 623-640-7502
Rise Above Remodeling • 623-551-2013
Soft Water Plus • 623-551-7383
SonoranScapes Landscaping • 602-842-9948
State Farm Insurance - Justin Simons • 623-551-3700
Storage at Anthem • 623-226-8634
Sunset Cabinets • 623-687-6579
Thompson & McGinnis Attorneys at Law • 602-952-2666
Titan Tree Care • 623-444-8448
Titan Pest Control • 623-879-8700
Wyman Plumbing & Mechanical • 623-551-6688

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Lara Gates
Anthem resident Lara Gates is executive director of the Rocky Mountain Southwest Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. She's a former managing editor of In&Out Magazine and prior to that was an executive producer in local television.

Lara Gates

Anthem resident Lara Gates is executive director of the Rocky Mountain Southwest Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. She's a former managing editor of In&Out Magazine and prior to that was an executive producer in local television.

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