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- November 24, 2003
- Vol. 60
- No. 21
For Maureen Kelly, Succeeding with Her Cosmetics Line, Tarte, Honors the Husband She Lost
It took a guy to change her mind. Kelly started Tarte cosmetics in 1999 at the urging of her husband, Mark Ludvigsen, a bond salesman. She was unsure about her work as a psychologist and, Kelly recalls, "Mark said life is too short" not to follow your dreams. He was more right than they knew. By 2001 Tarte was selling in high-end stores like Henri Bendel and Nordstrom. But that September Ludvigsen, 32, died in the attack on the World Trade Center. "He called and said he was fine and would call back in 10 minutes," says Kelly, 31. "I never heard from him again."
So grief-stricken she could barely get out of bed, Kelly pushed on to make the Manhattan-based Tarte a success. The, company is projecting S2.7 million in sales this year, with 5 percent of the net profit going to charities like Dress for Success, while fans of her fanciful products (feathered powder brushes) include Jennifer Garner, Ashley Judd and Britney Spears. Says the still-single Kelly: "It was Mark's and my dream—he believed in me. I didn't want to let him down."
January 31, 2015
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