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NAWBO San Francisco Newsletter

Welcome to the April 2006 issue of the monthly newsletter for the National Association of Women Business Owners® (NAWBO®) San Francisco Bay Area Chapter.

April 2006 News Summary

22nd Annual Women Entrepreneurs Benefit and NAWBO-University™

Join us in celebrating the entrepreneurial spirit as we recognize women business owners who exemplify entrepreneurial excellence at our 22nd Annual Women Entrepreneurs Benefit. Don't miss our 2nd Annual NAWBO-University™, presented by Citibank. Register online now!

NAWBO®'s 2006 Women's Business Conference: June 1-3, San Francisco

Join the National Association of Women Business Owners® (NAWBO®) for a once in a lifetime experience. NAWBO®'s 2006 Women's Business Conference - "Owning the Future", June 1-3, will be in San Francisco this year. Take your business to new heights by attending the top-notch breakout sessions, focused on giving you the tools and skills you need to strengthen and grow your business, as well as helping you to find the best balance between your work and personal spheres. With thought-provoking keynote speakers, an entire track devoted to leaders on a variety of topics, plus information-packed breakout sessions, you don't want to miss this opportunity to connect with women entrepreneurs from around the country! Learn more here ...

NAWBO®-SF National Conference Reception: June 1

As the host chapter for the NAWBO® National Conference, NAWBO®-SF will provide an elegant Welcome Reception for our sister organizations on Thursday, June 1, 5:30pm -7:30pm. Sponsored by OPEN from American ExpressSM and Chevron, the reception will be held on the top floor of the Westin St. Francis Hotel, in Victor's and Alexandra's Rooms, two stunning rooms with 360 degree views of the City, Bay Bridge, Golden Gate Bridge and the Bay. All NAWBO®-SF members are encouraged to attend this free event! Click here for more information ...

Deborah Wilder Reports from Public Policy Days

Contributed by Deborah Wilder, Law Office of Deborah Wilder 2005-2006 NAWBO®-SF Public Policy Chair

I have just returned from NAWBO® 's Public Policy Days and want to share with you the exciting and important information I learned from this conference. At the public policy meeting we discussed the new structure and goals for public policy. Effective this July there will be a Public Policy Forum with a slightly different structure. New bylaw changes will no longer designate a Vice President of Public Policy. Instead there will be a Board liaison to the Forum, a chair of the forum and, most likely, regional representatives. If you are interested in learning more about the process as it unfolds, please let me know and I will do my best to keep you informed.

One of the best sessions I attended on Sunday was the session on women business centers. Despite a successful record of educating and sustaining women business owners in the early years of their businesses, these centers remain hampered by shoestring budgets and diminishing funding. Over 90 women business centers provide services, primarily educational classes (business plan writing, financial management, marketing, etc.) to new and emerging women-owned businesses. Unfortunately, the women business centers have not been consistently funded. Therefore, it is important for all NAWBO® members to write their members of Congress and Senators for the following:

1.Permanent funding of Women Business Centers through the Small Business Reauthorization Act.
2.Funding at a level of not less than $16.5 million per year for the Women Business Center Project. (less than $185,000 per center per year).

On Monday, our day started with a panel discussion of the importance of participating in the political process, including running for office. While not every business owner can run for the Statehouse, or even the local city council, being appointed to local boards and commissions creates greater knowledge of the government processes which impact your business, and also provides you and your business with additional name recognition.

Tuesday found many NAWBO® members meeting with the SBA Office of Advocacy and bringing our voices to Capitol Hill to meet with Congressional and Senate office staff on the issues most important to our businesses.

While NAWBO® members turned out from all over the country, I was disappointed that more members were not present from the Western Region. Public Policy Days is not just for chapter representatives. Our advocacy is not about politics, but about policy. There is strength in numbers. The more members who understand that being involved in the process impacts their bottom line, the more influential we become. Elected officials want to hear our views and our business experiences. If we do not participate in the process, then we leave the business laws, programs and regulations up to others who may not share our views. Being involved does not have to be time consuming or expensive, but it does require being informed and understanding that every email, letter and voice DOES matter. Even though I missed seeing many of you in Washington D.C., there is still plenty of time to have your views heard. Just call or email your local member of Congress or U.S. Senator!

Chevron Shares Key Supplier Strategies with South African Businesswomen

Addressing some 120 South African businesswomen at a recent conference in Johannesburg, Chevron Corporation's Manager of Supplier Diversity and Small Business Programs Audrey Goins Brichi stressed the importance of inclusiveness, outreach and education in fueling the mutual growth of corporations and their suppliers. The event, hosted by Minister of Energy Lindiwe Hendricks, was held in conjunction with the 18th World Petroleum Congress.

"At Chevron, we believe an inclusive business environment is a competitive advantage," Goins Brichi said. "We seek out small, minority, women-owned and indigenous businesses that can add value anywhere along the supply chain. In South Africa, as in other countries where we operate, we specifically look to partner with local companies and to increase our local expenditures."

She emphasized that Chevron's suppliers should reflect the diversity of its customers, its host communities and its markets. Through South Africa's aggressive goal of a 6% annual increase in gross domestic product (GDP), the government has made clear that economic growth in every industry and every community is critical. Since 1998, South Africa's GDP has grown each quarter, reaching a rate of 4.8% by mid-2005. However, the unemployment rate is still about 25%, and disproportionately affects blacks.

"We're witnessing an economic, technological and human transformation on a grand scale," said Goins Brichi. "Corporations can play an important role in advancing the goals of South Africa and other African nations by working with local suppliers and helping to build their capacities."

Partnerships with suppliers, she said, typically involve ongoing education in the form of supplier forums and university-level executive education programs, transfers of knowledge and technology, and a commitment to procure goods and services locally, wherever possible.

Sandra Floyd, founder and president of Outsource Consulting Services Inc. of Oakland, was on hand to address the audience from her perspective as owner of a small, woman-owned business.

"Regardless of size," she said, "every company can create jobs in the community. I feel we have a responsibility to help develop other suppliers and build stronger neighborhoods. In our home base of Oakland, for example, we support education, health and sports programs."

"I've learned that South Africans, regardless of their diversity, have a shared value system," said Goins Brichi. "It's expressed in the Zulu word ubuntu, which essentially means ‘putting people first.' That is very much in keeping with Chevron's values. We're committed to helping South Africa - and indeed Africa - reach its full human energy and human potential. Partnerships are born of hard work, but also of heart."

OPEN from American ExpressSM announces Make Mine a Million Business™

OPEN from American ExpressSM is the founding partner of Make Mine a Million Business™, a program of Count Me In for Women's Economic Independence. Count Me In for Women's Economic Independence is the leading national not-for-profit provider of on-line business loans and resources for women entrepreneurs to grow their micro businesses into $million enterprises.

OPENSM is the American Express team dedicated exclusively to the success of small business owners and their companies. OPEN provides an enhanced set of products, tools, services and savings designed to help make it easier for you to run your business.

The Make Mine a Million Business™ goal is to help women-owned businesses surpass the million dollar revenue mark. The program awards a combination of money, mentoring and marketing opportunities to 40 women entrepreneurs across the U.S. Business owners: Declare your intention to grow your business to a million and beyond at www.makemineamillion.org. Apply for the Make Mine a $Million Business™ program, or sign up to be a mentor! Attend the Make Mine a $Million Business™ workshops and award ceremony at the NAWBO® conference in San Francisco, June 1-3. Find out more and apply today!

Wells Fargo Hosts NAWBO®-SF Leaders' Circle Launch

NAWBO®-SF Leaders' Circle Launches:
New Program Designed for Women Business Owners $2M+:
On January 20th NAWBO®-SF held its first meeting of the Leaders' Circle in the offices of Wells Fargo. Leaders' Circle is a new NAWBO®-SF program designed for women-owned businesses with revenues greater than $2 million. The Leaders' Circle members will act as one another's advisory boards and offer peer-to-peer mentoring, while sharing goals, challenges and results.

Hosted by Wells Fargo, the first Leaders' Circle meeting brought together eight women business owners with business types ranging from CPA and staffing firms to a dairy farm in Turlock. A strict code of confidentiality in the meetings and elimination of competitive businesses in any one group contribute to high trust and openness among the members.

Led by Mary Janaitis and Gussie Stewart of MSJ Consulting, the first half-day meeting provided an orientation for the new members as well as insights on the challenges these business owners face and their collective goals from Leaders' Circle. Says Janaitis, "Launching an enterprise like Leaders' Circle is really exciting. With the increasing number of successful women-owned businesses in California and nationally, we think the time is right for women to come together to validate their voice and leverage their knowledge by drawing on their diverse and unique experiences. This first group, our ‘founders group' will help us build a model for the future that will help other women business owners that follow."

Margo Souza of Circle H. Dairy Farm was one of the participants in the first Leaders' Circle group. "The CEO of any company quickly learns that it's lonely at the top. I find it so refreshing to be in a group of women role models who face some of the same complex business issues that I do and to be able to discuss things in an open and trusting environment. In addition to learning and growing with one another, I feel this is an opportunity to make new friendships."

Members will continue to meet once a month in a roundtable format to collaborate on ways to help grow their businesses. The meetings will be held at the Wells Fargo offices in San Francisco and at members' offices. At quarterly full-day sessions, expert speakers will present on subjects selected by the group. Brenda Wright of Wells Fargo states, "It was our pleasure to host this founding group at Wells Fargo's offices. The Leaders' Circle members are truly pioneers. We are inspired by them and look forward to working with each of them and also helping to grow Leaders' Circle."

NAWBO® is seeking qualified women business owners who want to be a part of this exciting new program. For more information or to receive an application, please contact Diana Kimbrell at (415) 331-1334 or [email protected]

Jobs for Youth: Help Community Youth and Your Business at the Same Time!

There are not enough opportunities for San Francisco's young people to work. The city is investing nearly $10 million each year in youth employment training and work-based learning. But close to half of those who are receiving pre-employment training are not able to put their skills to use due to a lack of opportunities in the private sector. Currently, 50% of the city's departments participate in youth employment programs, employing and mentoring approximately 400 students each year. As such, the city of SF is the single largest employer of youth. Jobs for Youth would like to see the San Francisco business community match the city's efforts and commit to 50% participation for Summer 2006. A community project of the United Way of the Bay Area, Jobs for Youth (JFY) provides employers with convenient, one-stop access to motivated and trained applicants, and an opportunity to demonstrate community leadership by leveraging the city's investment in workforce development among San Francisco's youth. Find out how your business can get involved!

Great Business Begins with Great Style! Join us on May 3 ...

Jones New York, Macy's, Women's Leadership Exchange and NAWBO®-SF invite you to join us on Wednesday, May 3, 6pm - 8pm for exclusive business solutions, networking and shopping! Leslie Grossman, co-founder of the Women's Leadership Exchange, will share her business solutions and secrets to success. One of Leslie's secrets is building a strong, versatile business wardrobe, and she'll show you great looks from Jones New York that make it easy to achieve style success! With any $100 Jones New York purchase at the event, receive a signed copy of Leslie Grossman's book "SELLsation"* as well as a 70-inch fashion tiger's eye necklace.*

*Limit one per customer. While supplies last. Offer valid with regular priced purchases only.

Please RSVP today to reserve your space
Call 1-888-937-5800
Wednesday, May 3, 6pm - 8pm
Macy's Union Square on O'Farrell Street
Jones New York Collection Shop on 3

Key Dates: Mark Your Calendar!

April 7: 22nd Annual Women Entrepreneurs Benefit and NAWBO-U™
May 3: NAWBO® and WLE Great Business Style Event
May 11: Dinner Event/The Power of Referrals with Joanne S. Black
June 1-3: NAWBO® National Conference
June 1: NAWBO® National Conference Reception

Thank you to our Corporate Partners:

The NAWBO®-SF Monthly Newsletter is designed and edited by NAWBO®-SF member
Jennifer Donahue Marketing Communications for Businesses Large and Small

If you would like to submit stories, news, events, or happenings for the next issue of NAWBO®-SF's e-news, please send to the newsletter editor,
Patricia Olson, at [email protected]. Copy submission deadline is the 22nd of the current month for the next month's newsletter (e-mailed out the first week of the month).

We invite anyone who is not already a member to join NAWBO®-SF. Take advantage of a growing package of member benefits and activities. To find out more, visit our website: www.middleastwomen.org/membership.html.

To subscribe to (or unsubscribe from) this newsletter, contact Rhoda Singer at 415.333.2130, or email: joi[email protected].

 





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