Despite being born in the Himalayan Mountains to refugee parents who escaped the violent occupation of Tibet by China, Kunga Cheokyi overcame the odds when immigrating to the U.S. more than 30 years ago. After studying to become a nail technician while living in India, she eventually became a sought-after nail tech here in the United States because of her positive attitude and persona. “As a nail technician, I believe that the focus isn’t just on the nails, but also the relationship fostered between my clients and me,” Cheokyi says. 

Because of her dedicated clientele, she soon became a successful Connecticut salon owner, and most recently, the inventor of a practical four-bottle polish holder called Polish Posy — developed with giving back in mind. After raising about $9,000 for the product in just under a month via Kickstarter, Cheokyi was able to transform an idea she’d been thinking about for years into a reality. Cheokyi hopes the product — built in the shape of a lotus flower — will free both hands for professionals and consumers alike and prevent polish spills. She plans to donate a portion of proceeds to local and international charities that help Tibetan refugee communities.

“I have been in the same place as these refugee children,” Cheokyi says. “I am just trying to help both the Tibetan refugee settlements and as well communities here in Connecticut.”

She believes the unique functionality of her product will help polish lovers as well. While many would consider her accomplishments brag-worthy, Cheokyi manages to stay humble. “My giving is not any more grand or remarkable than what others out there are doing,” she says. “What I do have is a wonderful opportunity with Polish Posy to amplify my giving to these worthy causes.”

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