About

A minute into her talk “How to be a Successful Pioneer,” Saya had completely reassembled the notion of “success” with a hilarious candor that easily won over the audience—even this jaded agency professional. She reaffirms what our collective gut has always known: when it comes to success we tend to check all the wrong boxes—someone else’s boxes. Her radical mission: to have the world value you for doing what you love. Her vision, to trigger transformation from within by coaxing you out of your comfort zone into your joy zone, challenges the winner/loser narrative that has reigned for too long in our quest for success. – CreativeMornings audience member

 

Mac & Cheese Productions℠ is a lifestyle business that creates and curates experiences which encourage individuals and groups to embrace a Life of Yes℠ — positivity, self-efficacy, & community.

Mac & Cheese utilizes play, innovation, and comfortable fear to help people find fulfillment and groups a positive culture. Think adult summer camp.

At its core is the belief that the segments which make up our lives shouldn’t be sources of stress but sources of joy and ease.

For examples of Life of Yes℠ in action and to see how you can get the goodness in your life, check out Offerings.

Clientele are fondly called Cheese-Its.

About the Head Cheese-It

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Saya never wears makeup and is too frugal to hire a headshot photographer so this is her taking advantage of a brick wall, late afternoon sunlight, and professionally-done makeup leftover from a PBS shoot. She took selfies in a West Loop parking lot for twenty-minutes. And felt embarrassed for a split second. Then shook off the embarrassment to look pensively into the distance and push the camera button.

Saya Hillman started Mac & Cheese Productions℠ in 2004 after she got fired from her last full-time job and had no idea what she wanted to do but knew that she no longer wanted a boss nor wanted to put on pants most days. She also recognized a knack for connecting people, building community, and using what she had instead of focusing on what she lacked. She (now) believes getting fired was the best thing to ever happen to her.

From Evanston, Illinois, with a B.A. in English and Sociology from Boston College, Saya lives in Chicago with her husband aka Best Friend whom she met at one of her own events, and with whom she planned had an almost 100-percent-bartered wedding (she loves frugality and efficiency). You can see her in action here.

When Saya used to try to fit in — which as an amazonian biracial Black Jew with a single mom, homemade clothes, and bike for a car was difficult — she was miserable. Since learning the power of voice, she is a master at getting others to “Me too!” and now embraces her literal and figurative stretch marks.

Via M&C, she’s a wearer of many hats and thus needs twenty minutes to answer “So, what do you do?”

She has many strong opinions, usually in list form and of little consequence in the grand scheme of things. But that doesn’t stop her from sharing them.

She is ready for a book deal, in possession of the title, synopsis, and pre-order excitement for her obvious NYT bestseller; if you’d like to offer her a book-deal, get in touch. She also would love a brand new, free Subaru with one of those ridiculous huge red bows atop. For that too, get in touch.