The Women’s Business Center South (WBC South), an SBA grant-funded center, held a grand opening event on Monday, August 23, 2021 in the Central Atrium at Crosstown Concourse in Memphis. Presented by the Women’s Business Enterprise Council South, the in-person celebration included a ribbon cutting ceremony, remarks by city and business leaders and women-owned networking. Speakers included the following:
- Lee Harris, Shelby County Mayor
- Joann Massey, Director, Office of Business Diversity and Compliance, City of Memphis
- Jessica Taveau, President, Epicenter Memphis
- Corinne Hodges, CEO, Association of Women Business Centers
- Keynote Address: Natalie Madeira Cofield, U.S. SBA Assistant Administrator for the Office of Women’s Business Ownership
- Vonesha Mitchell, Executive Director, WBC South
- Phala K. Mire, President/CEO, WBEC South
Attendees had the opportunity to network among women-owned businesses to learn about their products and services including: Alcenia’s, Associated Benefits Consulting, BrainTrust, LEO Events, Mobile Mommy, New York Life Insurance Company and Oteka Technologies, LLC. Award-winning author and founder of BrainTrust, Sherry Deutschmann, gave away copies of her book “Lunch with Lucy” during the event.
The WBC South is part of SBA’s historic expansion of WBCs in 20 rural, urban and underserved communities across America. Memphis was selected due to the prevalence of women entrepreneurs. The WBC South provides coaching, tools and resources for women business owners to sustain and grow their ventures in Tennessee, Mississippi, Alabama, Louisiana and the Florida Panhandle. Since launching in July 2021, the WBC South has received 193 coaching applications from women owned businesses.
“We’re overjoyed with the enthusiastic response we have received by women entrepreneurs since opening our doors,” says Vonesha Mitchell, executive director, Women’s Business Center South. “We have conducted dozens of coaching sessions and are excited to help women owned businesses achieve the next level of success.”