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  • Submitted on 20 April 2015

    Created on April 20, 2015
     

    Hive 2.0 and Cherry BlossomsDuring this past weekend Nate Yohannes, my Senior Advisor, and I did the startup pitching rounds in our nation's capital.

    On Friday night Nate was a judge at Mark Cuban's Recess, the college version of ABC's Shark Tank ("from dorm room to board room"). Recess is a music tour/music festival (like SXSW), entrepreneur speaker series and pitch competition with the winning prize of $10k towards your student loan (thanks to USA Network) and a flight to Hollywood, California to pitch to Cuban and his venture capital fund. Chip Conley, cofounder/ Head of Global Hospitality & Strategy at Airbnb was on hand too and provided advice to startup players in the room.  Cool stuff.

  • Submitted on 14 April 2015

    Created on March 15, 2015
     

    Going Global with Intellectual PropertyAre you planning to expand your business internationally to sell or buy innovative goods and technologies? Are you pondering opening a factory abroad, having your products made overseas, or starting an export or import business? Even if you are not planning on going overseas, knowledge of the international aspects of intellectual property may be critical for your business. 

    The Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) and the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) will co-host a series of free 1-hour webinars starting on April 28 to provide business owners with useful information on the international aspects of intellectual property and conducting commerce at home. Mark your calendars and register for this 3-part series offering keen insight about complex international laws.

    Register today!

  • Submitted on 14 April 2015

    Created on April 14, 2015
     

    Women's History Month Event Planners and Dr. Andrea E. Smith-HunterIn commemoration of the 2015 National Women’s History Month, the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) hosted a “Meet the Author” event inside Commerce’s Research Library on April 8.  

    The guest speaker for the event was Dr. Andrea E. Smith-Hunter, a Professor of Management and Sociology at Siena College and author of several books.  Dr. Smith-Hunter spoke to Commerce employees about her research and latest publication  titled “Women Entrepreneurs in the Global Marketplace,” a topic that resonates with this year’s national theme of “Weaving the Stories of Women’s Lives.”

  • Submitted on 06 April 2015

    We wanted to invite you to apply for an incredible opportunity to pitch your business at a Breakfast Casting Call with the casting team from ABC’s Shark Tank on Saturday, April 11th at 8:30am at thehive 2.0 in Washington, DC.

  • Submitted on 27 March 2015

    Created on March 27, 2015
     

    Farad Ali, MBDA Raleigh Operator, Kimberly R. Marcus, Associate Director, and Shelby Scales, President AMACMBDA Associate Director Kimberly Marcus was a presenter at the 2015 Airport Minority Advisory Council (AMAC) Industry Day on March 25th.  The annual event gathers aviation professionals and key stakeholders to discuss the legislative and regulatory agenda of the organization and to hear from industry leaders on and off Capitol Hill.

    As the Office of Legislative, Education and Intergovernmental Affairs continues to engage like-minded local, regional and national stakeholders, MBDA was pleased to be a part of this gathering and share our vision, mission and accomplishments.  Associate Director Marcus emphasized the importance of forging a meaningful relationship and the opportunity to collaborate on issues of shared importance.  Aviation and its related industries is an area where MBDA wants to see MBE growth and expansion – a shared goal of AMAC, the only national non-profit trade association dedicated to promoting the full participation of minority owned, woman-owned and disadvantaged business enterprises in airport contracting and the inclusion of minorities and women in every area of employment. AMAC and its affiliates include airport operators, government officials, corporations and MBEs.

  • Submitted on 17 March 2015

    Created on March 17, 2015
     

    National Director Castillo addressing RES attendeesAlejandra Y. Castillo, National Director of the Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) and agency officials joined representatives from several MBDA Business Centers around the country at the National Reservation Economic Summit (RES) in Las Vegas last week.  This multifaceted event was hosted by the National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development (NCAIED) and featured unparalleled access to respected tribal leaders, members of congress, federal agency representatives, state and local elected officials, and top CEO’s.

    Business met culture at the conference, allowing participants to experience customs and traditions while promoting economic empowerment of American Indian entrepreneurs.  Castillo spoke at two summit events where she highlighted MBDA’s commitment to the tribal communities and the success of minority businesses. MBDA also exhibited at the Buy Native Procurement Matchmaking Expo and engaged tribal leaders and business owners in identifying opportunities as well as discussed best practices in pursuing contracts and capital.

  • Submitted on 17 March 2015

    Created on March 17, 2015
     

    EXIM/MBDA's Minority Exporter of the Year Business Award showcases the fastest-growing Minority-Owned Exporters based on revenue growth and U.S. job creation over the immediate past two years.

    The winner will be publicly recognized at EXIM’s Awards and Recognition Luncheon during the 40th Annual EXIM Conference at the OMNI Shoreham Hotel, 2500 Calvert Street in Washington, DC on April 23-24, 2015.

    CRITERIA FOR NOMINATIONS / APPLICATIONS:

    OWNERSHIP: At least 51% of the Company must be owned and managed by a minority.

    EXPORT: Must be exporting U.S. made goods or services.

    AFFILIATION: Client of MBDA and EXIM.

    PERSONAL APPEARANCE: Company President/CEO or Representative must attend the Annual EXIM Conference to receive the Award in person.

    SELECTION PROCESS: EXIM will review applications provided by the applicants.

    NOMINATE A BUSINESS

  • Submitted on 04 March 2015

    Created on March 4, 2015
     

    U.S. Minority-Owned ManufacturersIn the first of a series of new industry-based fact sheets released by MBDA, data reveals that minority-owned manufacturing firms employ 342,000 workers and grew faster than their non-minority counterparts in three areas—number of firms, employees and gross receipts.

    This data supports MBDA’s increased focus on manufacturers over the past few years and we’ve seen results. Between FY 2009 and 2013, MBDA facilitated $2.8 billion in contracts for minority-owned manufacturing firms.  For the past two years, MBDA manufacturing clients have shown significant growth, becoming the top category for contracting revenue, a designation traditionally reserved for MBDA clients in the construction industry.

    In an effort to continue this upward trend, MBDA awarded supplemental funding to four MBDA Business Centers to better assist clients in advanced manufacturing. Their specialty expertise will have a national scope while centrally located in Atlanta, Detroit, Indianapolis, and Cleveland – cities with a high population of minority-owned manufacturers.

  • Submitted on 25 February 2015

    Created on February 25, 2015
     

    Joann J. HillI am a native of Columbia, South Carolina and a graduate of Benedict College with a BS in Business Administration. I also received a Masters of Business Administration from the Goizueta Business School at Emory University. After college, I began my career with the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) in Atlanta, Georgia. In 2000, I joined the MBDA Atlanta Regional Office and have been with the Department of Commerce for 14 years.  I began my career with MBDA as a Business Development Specialist and was eventually promoted to Chief of Business Development for the Southeastern Region. My next promotion relocated me to the MBDA National Headquarters in Washington, DC in 2012 where I currently serve as Chief of the Office of Business Development. In this capacity I oversee the Office of Business Development and serve as the lead federal program officer for the nationwide network of MBDA’s 44 Business Centers.

    I lead the effort within the agency to promote economic opportunities that expand the growth and competitiveness of minority business enterprises (MBEs) across America. I am responsible for the creation and implementation of strategies for business development in the areas of: access to capital, access to contracts; access to emerging domestic and international markets and global supply chains.  We also actively engage strategic stakeholders like national chambers of commerce and trade associations in collaboration on policy and programs. 

    For three consecutive years, I have served as Conference Director for the National Minority Enterprise Development (MED) Week Conference, the nation’s largest federally sponsored conference on minority business enterprise. This conference is held annually in Washington, D.C. and attracts over 1,000 attendees. Traditionally, we have hosted officials from the White House, including the Vice President of the United States, the Secretary of Commerce, Cabinet Secretaries and a host of CEOs from MBEs and Fortune 500 firms.

  • Submitted on 23 February 2015

    Created on February 23, 2015
     

    The Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA), the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) and Coppin State University (CSU), joined forces to celebrate Black History Month with “The Future of Business, Innovation, and Entrepreneurship” event held Feb. 12 in Baltimore.

    The event, held at CSU, a Historical Black College and University (HBCU), offered a range of activities and speakers focused on entrepreneurship, business and innovation. There was also a student networking fair where regional minority business owners and federal agencies presented internship opportunities.

    “It gives me great pleasure to participate in a Black History Month program at an HBCU, for I’m a proud graduate of Clark Atlanta University,” said Kimberly R. Marcus, MBDA’s Associate Director for the Office of Legislative, Education and Intergovernmental Affairs, and who served as the Masters of Ceremony for the event.

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