10 Most Beautiful Women 2018 presented by Bharat Shah

The woman who receives the most online votes and brings the biggest crowd to Indulge will donate a portion of the event proceeds to her local charity of choice. The winner will be announced at Indulge on October 3.

What is your local 417-land charity of choice, and why is it important to you? 

Play It ForwardI believe that music helps kids academically and emotionally, and it’s a talent they can enjoy for the rest of their lives. Any child who wants to play an instrument should be able to, even if the family can’t afford it. It’s a gift for a lifetime. We are a drop-off center for unused, unloved instruments. 

Do you volunteer, or are you involved in any philanthropic or community organizations? If so, what are they, and what do you do?

When we started The Spa Gallery, the first thing we did is set up a fund for our charities. Every pool and spa sale has a portion set aside to help our charities. We pick a different nonprofit every few months. We have raised over $4,000 since our opening one year ago. Springfield Animal Advocacy Foundation, Play It Forward and the Greene County Sheriff K-9 unit have all benefited from our company.

What do you think makes a woman beautiful?

Kindness, a nature of giving and peace in your heart.

What has been your proudest moment? Or, what are you most proud of?

I would have to say [Spa Retailer] being published in a national magazine for our philanthropy. What I’m proudest of personally is my marriage of 25 years to my best friend and work partner.

What was one particularly defining or life-changing moment in your life?

There were two, actually, that happened in the same year. I walked away from my career of 25 years and lost my mother just before Christmas. Working through grief and loss of two of the most important elements of my life helped me help others. Everyone has something they are struggling through once in a while. Finding my support group of friends who lifted each other up was crucial to my healing.

Bharat Shah MD FACS

When you were a child, who did you think was the most beautiful woman? Why?

Jane Goodall. I used to pretend I was her playing in my woods when I was young. Her intelligence and empathy make her beautiful to me. 

What advice would you give to a young girl about being beautiful?

I would tell her everyone has an inner light. Find what makes you different and embrace it! Never, ever let the opinions of others affect your inner peace.

What’s something that might surprise us about you, or a story you love to tell?

I love to split wood! When my husband and I lived on a farm with wood heat, I would split four cords a winter. It’s very zen-like when you get the rhythm down. 

What is your biggest source of inspiration?

People, animals and nature. I find my inspiration through people who have endured the hardest of times and come out stronger, animals for their ability to have unconditional love and nature because of its ability to heal after natural disasters. 

Where do you find beauty in 417-land?

My backyard. I believe you can create beauty wherever you live. I’ve started over 100 trees from seedlings and introduced native trees to our 15 acres that weren’t there before.

What do you think is the biggest issue or challenge 417-land is facing right now, and how would you tackle it? 

I would have to say our homeless population. Eden village is a wonderful idea to give people a hand. Hopefully, we will see more communities like this in the future.

Fill in the blank: Friends would describe you as “The _____ One.” 


See the winners in the September issue!

Get to know our 10 Most Beautiful even better. Then, watch them walk the runway at 417 Magazine's Indulge on October 3 at Oasis Hotel and Convention Center.