Photo:   Oliver Burke

Photo: Oliver Burke

Yoga Teacher

HER STYLE: "My favorite pieces are those that can transcend the occasion. i.e. a jumpsuit to work out in, with sneeks to run to the store in, with heels a visit to an art opening. I LOVE my harem pants, another item that I dress up or down depending. My favorite necklace from the flea, strong beads of grey, black, white and gold. I could own a million of them. Have to get the name because they are fantastic.And this is all it takes to spice up a a day time outfit for diner."

HER 2015 GOAL: "My goal for 2015 is to take yoga into new and unusual places. I am beginning a project in May entitled "THE PRACTICE with Maria Cutrona" at the Brooklyn Navy Yards bringing yoga to a diverse community of hard working innovative people. Open to the public as well."

LADIES SHE ADMIRES: "So many women have inspired me and meeting inspirational women continues to be a blessing. Mata Amritanandamayi known as Amma or Mother continues to be a beacon of light to guide me on. My dear friend Heather Packer for her light and love and her courage in starting a non-profit organization called Fearless Beauty to help impoverished young women in India become self sufficient. Michelle LaDue for her efforts to start the Naturopathic Relief Clinic in Haiti post-earthquake, which she continues to work on to this day."

NOMINATED BY: Amhalise Morgan

WHY SHE'S A LADY GUN: "When I think of powerful women, I think of Maria. She was an agent for stylists and makeup artists for years and slowly made a successful transition to being a full-time yoga instructor. She is a mom, a wife and an incredible friend. My heart smiles every time I see her."

HER INITIAL REACTION TO HER LADY GUNS NOMINATION: "I am thrilled and deeply honored to be welcomed into the community of Lady Guns Global. I can't think of a more pressing time (the suffragette movement?) for women to celebrate their inseparable connection with one another and all life forms. It is necessary for the survival of our species. So right on LADY GUNS GLOBAL for making this a mission."

ON CHANGING CAREER PATHS: "I am presently a full time yoga teacher. Two and a half years ago I left a corporate job in fashion to embark on following my passion, yoga and the aim to heal. I could no longer "pretend" that a career with a title and a desk meant something to me. I wanted to break open this small confined perception of who I was. I felt in a crisis. It was necessary for my survival to begin a journey of self discovery. That journey continues today and has taken me to the realization it is in our fundamental sacred connectedness to all living beings that we step into our truth."

Eka Pada | Photo: Courtesy Maria Cutrona

Eka Pada | Photo: Courtesy Maria Cutrona

Vashistasana  | Photo: Courtesy Maria Cutrona

Vashistasana | Photo: Courtesy Maria Cutrona

ON OVERCOMING "I CAN'T": "As I continue to evolve as a human being I have had to dispel the myths of self limitation. I had great fear and doubt about myself.  I came to the realization that I had to stop buying into that narrative of who I am and what I am capable of. I realized what is essential is to help others. To step into my own power I had to come into communion with others and release the [thoughts] of 'I can't.' I believe the practice of yoga journeys you to that connection with your relevance."

ON HELPING OTHERS: "I was able to successfully transition into a full time yoga teacher. From there I have expanded to teach yoga philosophy and meditation. It is imperative that my time here be [spent] helping others. I have expressed this in my work teaching yoga in the prison system and a program I initiated called Precious Time which is spending time with the silenced and ignored of our population: the elderly."

Utthita Hasta Padagustasana |  Photo: Courtesy Maria Cutrona

Utthita Hasta Padagustasana | Photo: Courtesy Maria Cutrona

Vatayasana |  Photo: Courtesy Maria Cutrona

Vatayasana | Photo: Courtesy Maria Cutrona

ON LIVING IN BROOKLYN: "I live in the belly of Brooklyn which is one of the most exciting places on the planet right now. Movements are budding in all directions; art, politics, film, food. People are thinking outside of the box and planning their life path from their heart and not a certificate of paper. Very innovative times here in Brooklyn."