In honor of Women’s History Month and International Women’s Day, we are celebrating female founders and introducing streamlined tools for success. In addition to connecting with a community of entrepreneurs and industry experts, hear about capital sources and the process of becoming a certified Woman–Owned Business.
Food sampling will be provided by entrepreneurs. Ticket sales go to support local, women-owned catering businesses.
About the Presenters:
How to Become Certified Women Owned
Griselda Llerenas is Associate Director of Certification Program and Services at the Women’s Business Development Center (WBDC) in the WBDC’s Chicago office. Griselda supports women business owners in the certification and recertification process in order to provide them with a nationally recognized tool to market and grow their businesses. Griselda has worked in the non-profit sector and acquired experience in project coordination, social enterprise operations, and fundraising. Griselda holds a B.A. in Political Science and English from DePaul University. She also completed a program in executive fund development conducted by the University of Notre Dame.
Access to Capital: Breaking Down the Barriers
Abigail Scanlan serves as the Director of Access to Capital for the WBDC. She assists her clients in navigating the complexities of obtaining appropriate funding for their businesses as well as in escalating and growing their businesses through additional capital and financing. After working in the banking industry for many years, Abby brings her enthusiasm for advising entrepreneurs and helping them succeed to the organization. She has partnered with a wide range of businesses from startups to established enterprises, providing financial guidance and strong banking partnerships.
Celebrating Female Entrepreneurs and Leveraging WBENC
About the Moderator:
Dani Zuchovicki is ICNC’s Membership and Community Manager at The Hatchery. With a Culinary and Applied Food Studies degree from The Culinary Institute of America, Dani worked alongside James Beard Award-winning chefs, learning the ins and outs of the restaurant space. Being a part of The Hatchery’s Food and Beverage Incubator, Dani helps entrepreneurs launch and grow their businesses by go-to-market strategies for startups and curates their exponential growth.
About the Panel:
Tracey McGhee the Founder of Ms. Jetsetter. She created the Ms. J brand, where the mission is to create stylish and functional travel accessories for women on the go. The Ms. J Brand has been featured on the Home Shopping Network (HSN), and GMA Deals & Steals, over 40 Chicagoland Walgreens stores. Tracey is an Alum of the Women’s Business Development Center (WBDC) Top Shelf Retail cohort program. Tracey is WBE certified with the WBDC in Chicago. In 2022 Ms. Jetsetter was awarded the Supplier of the Year, Class I by the Chicago Minority Supplier Development Council.
Tamara Turner is the founder and CEO of Silver Spoon Desserts. She has grown her business substantially since 2017 and partners with major airlines, global food service groups restaurant chains, hotels and casinos. She has participated in and won several pitch competitions and has been featured on several media platforms including television and Forbes Magazine. Silver Spoon Desserts mission is to transform, enrich, and empower the lives of women. They are transforming the “silver spoon” from a symbol of privilege to a symbol of inspiration, prosperity and freedom for all.
Danielle Tubbs is the founder of Tubby’s Taste. Danielle comes from a long line of Jamaican cake ladies so it’s safe to say that baking is her blood. Growing up in Miami, she was surrounded by unique fruits, foods, and flavors. She started making desserts as a hobby to explore baking with the flavors she grew up with and using the techniques her family taught her. It quickly turned into a passion, then a business – and Tubby’s Taste was born in 2014! After years of testing recipes and bringing baked goods to parties, a good friend who is vegan said “I wish you’d make something that we all could enjoy.” Challenge accepted! Danielle got into the kitchen and tested new recipes. To her surprise, she loved creating desserts that were delicious, passed her taste test, and were completely vegan-friendly. And, she still does! Now, all of Tubby’s Taste cookies are boldly flavored Jamaican-inspired and formulated to be vegan, nut-, soy-, and preservative-free. Plus, each flavor tells a story inspired by Danielle’s Jamaican roots!
The Illinois Small Business Development Center and Illinois Small Business Development Center International Trade Center is funded in part through a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), the Illinois Department of Commerce & Economic Opportunity, and the Industrial Council of Nearwest Chicago (ICNC). Reasonable accommodation for persons with disabilities will be made if requested at least two weeks in advance. Please contact the center at (312)421-3941.