Press Releases

ByNWBC Council

NWBC & US Small Business Administrator Jovita Carranza Release Joint Statement

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact:
Temren Wroge
202-738-3523
Temren.Wroge@sba.gov

NWBC & U.S. SMALL BUSINESS ADMINISTRATOR JOVITA CARRANZA RELEASE JOINT STATEMENT

Amid the coronavirus pandemic, the National Women’s Business Council (NWBC) remains focused on carrying out its critical mission of advocating for the nation’s 13 million women-owned businesses. The Council recognizes the ongoing commitment of the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) in ensuring women business owners have access to opportunities to start and grow their business, and in times of crisis, to keep their business afloat. Smaller, community lenders have undoubtedly been at the forefront of providing business owners with the capital they need to keep their employees on payroll and sustain overhead costs.

For that reason, NWBC recently hosted a webinar titled ‘Community Lending Key to Main Street Recovery: Resources and Lessons Learned for Female Founders.’ The webinar included guest speakers Jill Castilla, President and CEO of Citizens Bank of Edmond in Oklahoma and NWBC Council Member Jessica Flynn, Founder & CEO of Red Sky, a strategic communications firm in Boise, Idaho.

Jessica shared her experience successfully applying for the Payroll Protection Program (PPP) through a community bank in Idaho. As a result, she was able to continue operations and keep her 10 employees on payroll during the pandemic.  

Jill shared how she is leading the way in community lending, processing 450 PPP loans that supported local small businesses. Her commitment to breaking down barriers for women and minority small business owners has improved their ability to access capital and provided a model for other community lenders around the country.

“Saving small businesses and the jobs they support is my top priority as SBA Administrator. In the seven weeks after launching the PPP, we’ve rolled out over half a trillion in forgivable loans to more than 4.4 million small businesses and nonprofits,” said Administrator Jovita Carranza. “I remain committed to helping every small business owner – especially our minority-owned, women-owned, veteran-owned and other entrepreneurs serving disadvantaged communities – not just survive this difficult time, but make it out the other side stronger and ready to expand.”

 “Women-owned businesses are truly the engine driving our national economy and small banks and community lenders are the lifelines they need to stay afloat during this pandemic,” said NWBC Chair Liz Sara. “We are encouraged that the SBA has prioritized smaller lenders in its implementation of the second round of CARES Act funding and look forward to working with them to continue to broaden the pool of capital access options for women.”

“Community banks are outperforming all other financial institutions in helping women-owned and minority-owned small businesses access resources to keep their doors open and be prepared for the return of the American economy,” said Jill Castilla, president and CEO of Citizens Bank of Edmond. “It is critical for our institutions to reach out to underserved communities and to stand in the gap as accessible and knowledge partners in pursuing these critical SBA resources.”

NWBC and SBA remain committed to working together to ensure that women-owned businesses continue to have increased opportunities to access capital, particularly as they navigate this pandemic. Keeping women-owned enterprises open for business is our shared priority.

About SBA: Created in 1953, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) continues to help small business owners and entrepreneurs pursue the American dream. The SBA is the only cabinet-level federal agency fully dedicated to small business and provides counseling, capital, and contracting expertise as the nation’s only go-to resource and voice for small businesses.

About NWBC: The National Women’s Business Council (NWBC), is an independent, non-partisan federal advisory committee established to provide advice and policy recommendations to the President, Congress, and the Administrator of the SBA.

ByNWBC Council

NWBC Shares Recent ABS Data on Women-Owned Businesses

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact:
Temren Wroge
202-738-3523
Temren.Wroge@sba.gov

The U.S. Census Bureau today released new statistics from the 2018 Annual Business Survey (ABS). Since its founding in 1988, the NWBC has depended on data collection from the U.S. Census Bureau to fulfill its statutory obligation and mission. The Council must, in relevant part, promote and assist in the development of a women’s business census and other surveys of women-owned businesses. We are thrilled to share the most recent findings relating to women-owned employer firms.

Estimates show that in 2017 1.1 million employer firms were owned by women. The sectors with the most women-owned businesses included the health care and social assistance industry with 16.9% (192,159), professional, scientific, and technical services with 16.4% (185,649), and the retail trade industry with 11.7% (132,894).

 Please click HERE to view the complete release. 

ABS data accounts for only 10% of women-owned firms in the U.S., as the overwhelming majority are nonemployer businesses (those without employees). NWBC continues to highlight the need for timelier, reliable data collection efforts that ensure every woman-owned business in America is counted. We look forward to the completion of the Nonemployer Statistics by Demographics (NES-D) product, which will provide a more holistic look at the landscape of women’s business enterprise.

ICYMI – In April, we announced that the National Women’s Business Council (NWBC) is a 2020 Census!


ByNWBC Council

Updates From the National Women’s Business Council in the Face of the Pandemic

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact:
Temren Wroge
202-738-3523
Temren.Wroge@sba.gov

Updates From The National Women’s Business Council In The Face Of The Pandemic

WASHINGTON, D.C. – (April 1, 2020) –  In the midst of uncertainty, the National Women’s Business Council (NWBC), a federal advisory committee comprised of small business owners and representatives of national women’s business organizations, acknowledges the detrimental effects coronavirus has had on small businesses. Council Members have shared the challenges that the outbreak has presented for their own enterprises or those of their organization’s members. From the disruption in the supply chain to the cancellation of annual industry trade shows, the impact can be felt across industries and state lines.

 NWBC has also indefinitely postponed its signature #LetsTalkBusiness Roundtable Series, which connects the voices of women entrepreneurs and business owners from across the country to policymakers in the Nation’s capital and helps serve as a springboard for the Council’s annual policy recommendations to Congress, the President, and the Administrator of the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA)

Nonetheless, NWBC remains focused on carrying out its critical mission. As was reinforced at our first 2020 #LetsTalkBusiness Roundtable last month in San Juan, Puerto Rico, women business owners are key to helping local and national economies recover from disasters as well as grow and thrive.

Women-owned businesses represent 42% of all businesses — nearly 13 million — employing 9.4 million workers and generating revenue of $1.9 trillion. Over the past five years, the annual growth rate in the number of women-owned firms has been more than double that of all businesses. Female founders have fought too hard for a true place in the economy to lose all gains now.

With COVID-19 abruptly and drastically changing the landscape of our economy and disrupting local ecosystems, small businesses are looking for resources and advice to help them navigate these uncertain times and persevere.

The SBA is offering small businesses impacted by the Coronavirus up to $2 million in low-interest loans. These loans—available in all U.S. states, Washington D.C., and territories—can be used to “pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable, and other bills that cannot be paid because of the disaster’s impact.” The interest rate offered to qualifying small businesses is 3.75%, and 2.75% for non-profits. The SBA is also providing deferment relief to its existing borrowers on certain SBA-serviced loans through December 31, 2020. You can find additional information at www.SBA.gov/disaster

The U.S. Treasury Department and Internal Revenue Service have also announced a tax filing extension for all taxpayers from April 15 to July 15, 2020.

As we adjust to the new realities this crisis brings, NWBC remains committed to advocating for the nation’s 13 million women business owners and entrepreneurs. Please email NWBC at info@nwbc.gov and tell us how the Coronavirus is impacting your business. Be sure to stay in touch with us as we work to develop a webinar series on assistance available for small businesses.

Check out these NWBC Council Member & Partner Resources:

Women Business Enterprise Council (WBENC)
Association for Women in Science (AWIS)
The Vinetta Project
Association of Women’s Business Centers (AWBC)
Women President’s Organization (WPO)
Babson College Center for Women’s Entrepreneurial Leadership (CWEL)
Women Impacting Public Policy (WIPP)
National Association of Women Business Owners (NAWBO)
ByNWBC Council

NWBC Welcomes New Council Member Maria Rios

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact:
Temren Wroge
202-738-3523
Temren.Wroge@sba.gov

National Women’s Business Council Welcomes New Member, Maria Rios

WASHINGTON, D.C.- (April 7, 2020) — The National Women’s Business Council (NWBC) welcomes new Council Member, Maria Rios, President and CEO of Nation Waste, Inc. (NWI).

“I’m pleased to welcome Maria Rios to the Council” said Liz Sara, NWBC Chair. “Maria is the President and CEO of the first multi-million-dollar female, Hispanic-owned waste removal company in U.S. history and one of the largest minority-owned companies in Texas. Maria’s entrepreneurial skill is a great match for the Council’s work, and we look forward to her contributions to our team.”  

NWI is a fully certified, commercial waste disposal company specializing in construction, demolition, commercial/industrial, non-hazardous waste removal, portable toilets and recycling services.

“With an abundance of enthusiasm, I am looking forward to serving with this outstanding collective of results-driven women visionaries,” said Rios, new NWBC Council Member. “I’m energized to join the National Women’s Business Council and bring my experience as a business owner to the table.”   

In 2018, Rios revolutionized the workers safety industry by launching a new division, Nation Safety Net, which leverages a technology solution powered by IBM Watson IoT to keep workers safe and reduce the number of workplace injuries that occur.

Rios immigrated from El Salvador as a child and has dedicated her career to making life better for other Americans.  She has been a featured speaker at the White House for several administrations.

With the addition of Rios, NWBC will continue to focus its advocacy efforts on Women in STEM, Rural Women’s Entrepreneurship, and Access to Capital and Opportunity. NWBC remains committed to expanding opportunities for women business owners and their enterprises.

Maria Rios 

President and CEO of Nation Waste, Inc.

Read Maria’s full bio HERE

ByNWBC Council

NWBC Celebrates Women’s History Month And Issues Roundtable Report

IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact:
Temren Wroge
202-738-3523
Temren.Wroge@sba.gov

National Women’s Business Council Celebrates Women’s History Month And Issues Roundtable Report

WASHINGTON, D.C. – (March 11, 2020) – In celebration of Women’s History Month, the National Women’s Business Council (NWBC) releases its new 2019 Women in Small Business Roundtable Series Report.

In March of 2019, the Council launched its signature Women in Small Business Roundtable Series across the country to convene women business owners and entrepreneurs and connect their voices to policymakers in Washington, D.C. NWBC traveled to states in which Council Members live and grow their businesses and tapped into their local networks of female founders, entrepreneurs, and ecosystem stakeholders for direct input on remaining barriers to women’s business enterprise.

Each Roundtable discussion focused on one of the Council’s three main policy priorities: Access to Capital & Opportunity, Women in STEM, and Rural Women’s Entrepreneurship. The feedback received served as the foundation for the Council’s FY19 policy recommendations and FY20 priorities. Recurring themes across all roundtables included a lack of financial literacy, a shortage of funding opportunities for female founders, and a gap in effective resources and mentorship.

“The Council hopes that public officials will consider the stories presented in this report as they work to shape the economic environment for our nation’s women entrepreneurs. At this important juncture in women’s history in business, the NWBC is committed to leading the way for the rising number of female business owners and developers,” said Nina Roque, NWBC Executive Director.

The Austin, TX Roundtable, which focused on access to capital, found that most participants felt that women enter a Venture Capital (VC) pitch room with a higher burden of proof than men. Several participants in the Los Angeles, CA Roundtable asserted that the funding gap for women entrepreneurs would never change until more women joined the pool of investors. Many participants in the women in STEM Baltimore, MD and St. Petersburg, FL roundtables found the need for mentorship was great, since men are roughly twice as likely to be self-employed in STEM fields relative to women.

In the Pella, IA and Nampa, ID Roundtables, multiple women said they were compelled to take ownership of their rural business to fulfill the generational transfer of a family venture or continue operations after the sudden death of a spouse.

Their stories underscored the importance of succession planning in rural communities, especially as younger generations often have a greater economic incentive to leave their hometowns and pursue both a degree and career in outside urban hubs rather than take over a family business. Necessity entrepreneurship—starting a business to supplement income or gain the flexibility to attend to other demands in one’s life—is a common thread for women business owners and an underlying reason for a shortage of high-growth firms among this demographic.

These Roundtable discussions served as the foundation for the Council’s FY19 policy recommendations as reflected in its Annual Report submitted to the President, Congress, and the Administrator of the U.S. Small Business Administration on December 20, 2019. The feedback and input received also informed the Council’s FY20 policy priorities. The recurring themes across all Roundtables—including financial literacy and improved access to resources for women in STEM and in rural communities—will serve as the Council’s focus areas for 2020.

The Council plans to continue this successful endeavor in 2020 to further engage women founders across the country. The initiative has been rebranded as the #LetsTalkBusiness Roundtable Series. Confirmed stops include San Juan, PR; Houston, TX; Gilsum, NH; Grand Rapids, MI; and more. The Council’s 2019 Roundtables laid the groundwork for the upcoming FY20 Roundtables, which will follow the same model.

ByNWBC Council

NWBC Welcomes a New Member

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact:
Temren Wroge
202-738-3523
Temren.Wroge@sba.gov

THE NATIONAL WOMEN’S BUSINESS COUNCIL WELCOMES A NEW MEMBER

WASHINGTON, D.C., March 5, 2020 — The National Women’s Business Council (NWBC) welcomes it’s newest Council Member, Dr. Susan Duffy.

“I’m pleased to welcome Susan Duffy, Executive Director of the Babson College Center for Women’s Entrepreneurial Leadership (CWEL), to the Council” said Liz Sara, NWBC Chair. “Susan’s impressive background in women’s entrepreneurial development will serve the Council well and Babson College’s research on women’s entrepreneurship will further enrich our policy recommendations to the White House, Congress, and the Small Business Administration.”

Dr. Susan Duffy is also a co-founder of the Women Innovating Now (WIN) Lab venture accelerator and an inspired educator and advocate for gender equity as a driver of social and economic growth.

“Women entrepreneurs are a key driver in local, national, and global economic and social prosperity,” said Dr. Susan Duffy, new NWBC Council Member. “The potential impact of women owned businesses represents one of the greatest economic opportunities of our time. I’m thrilled to work with the NWBC to help ensure that these women entrepreneurs have what they need to achieve that impact.”

With the addition of Susan Duffy and the Babson College Center for Women’s Entrepreneurial Leadership, NWBC will continue to focus its advocacy efforts on Women in STEM, Rural Women’s Entrepreneurship, and Access to Capital and Opportunity. NWBC remains committed to expanding opportunities for women business owners and entrepreneurs. 

Susan Duffy

Executive Director, Babson College Center for Women’s Entrepreneurial Leadership (CWEL)

Read Susan Duffy’s full bio HERE

ByNWBC Council

#LetsTalkBusiness Roundtable in San Juan, Puerto Rico

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact:
Temren Wroge
202-738-3523
Temren.Wroge@sba.gov

THE NATIONAL WOMEN’S BUSINESS COUNCIL TO HOLD ROUNDTABLE IN PARTNERSHIP WITH THE PUERTO RICO FEDERAL AFFAIRS ADMINISTRATION 

#LetsTalkBusiness Roundtable will Focus on Issues Impacting Women Entreprenuers

WASHINGTON, D.C., February 5, 2020 – The National Women’s Business Council (NWBC) will hold its first #LetsTalkBusiness Roundtable of the year in partnership with the Puerto Rico Federal Affairs Administration on February 27, 2020 in San Juan.

High-level government officials, U.S. Small Business administration (SBA) resources partners, lenders, women business owners and entrepreneurs, and other key stakeholders will convene to discuss one of the Council’s key policy initiatives: Access to Capital & Opportunity.

The discussion will feature remarks from Puerto Rico Governor Wanda Vázquez Garced and center on issues impacting women business owners and entrepreneurs in Puerto Rico, particularly in the wake of ongoing recovery efforts following devastating natural disasters such as Hurricane Maria and the most recent earthquakes. Participants will also be asked to share with NWBC Council Members in attendance how financial education and creditworthiness impact an entrepreneur’s ability to access credit or capital to start or grow an enterprise. The group will also dedicate some time to exploring these important topics within the framework of recent federal disaster recovery efforts and available lending tools to small business owners.

This Roundtable will serve as the springboard for the Council’s policy recommendations to Congress, the President, and the Administrator of the SBA.

To attend this event, register HERE.

NWBC is an independent federal advisory committee established to provide advice and policy recommendations to the U.S. President, Congress, and the Small Business Administration (SBA) on issues related to women’s business enterprise. In doing so, the Council regularly convenes women business owners and entrepreneurs from across the country to connect their voices to policymakers in Washington, DC.

Media are invited to attend and can RSVP directly to NWBC Communications Manager Temren Wroge at Temren.Wroge@sba.gov.

Event Details:

Thursday, February 27, 2020

 Puerto Rico Convention Center – 100 Convention Blvd. San Juan, PR

9:00 AM – 12:00 PM AST

ByNWBC Council

New WBC Grant Opportunities

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact:
Temren Wroge
202-738-3523
Temren.Wroge@sba.gov

THE NATIONAL WOMEN’S BUSINESS COUNCIL: NEW WBC GRANT OPPORTUNITIES

WASHINGTON, D.C., January 30, 2020 – Today, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) announced a Women’s Business Center (WBC) grant opportunity in the Los Angeles area.This comes as part of an SBA priority to open more doors for women entrepreneurs and increase access to SBA resources in underserved communities.


Earlier this month, SBA also announced a WBC grant opportunity in the state of Maryland. NWBC Council Member Shelonda Stokes attended the roundtable to discuss the upcoming funding opportunity in Baltimore, MD.


“The National Women’s Business Council is encouraged that SBA has chosen Morgan State University, a Historically Black College and University (HBCU) and my alma mater, as the venue to announce a funding opportunity for a new WBC,” said Shelonda Stokes. “Underserved communities and rural areas are lacking in adequate resources for women business owners and entrepreneurs to start and grow their enterprise. It is important that the SBA is working to find ways to connect women to the resources that programs like Women’s Business Centers offer.”

NWBC expressed the following WBC-related recommendations in its 2019 Annual Report:

WBC Grant Allocation

  • SBA should consult with the AWBC when announcing a new WBC funding opportunity and conduct a national market scan to determine sustainable grant opportunities.
  • SBA’s Office of Women’s Business Ownership should allocate any supplementary grant money to high performing WBCs for the specific purpose of providing accessible, offsite trainings in underserved rural communities.
  • The Council recommends that SBA avoid the overcrowding of agency resources in certain urban areas and give first priority for WBC grants to rural communities identified in the market scan. According to the most recent data available, Mississippi and West Virginia are among the top 10 most rural states and do not have WBC grants. These states should have first consideration.

WBC Economic Impact Data

  • Congressionally mandated economic impact data should also include —the average duration of assistance to clients, regions in which the new concerns are located, and whether the women served plan to continue to operate and invest in that specific community.
  • The measure of a WBC’s reach (the number of women served) should be scaled relative to the capabilities, circumstances, and population in that region.
  • SBA should be required to share available WBC data with AWBC and the public.
ByNWBC Council

INVESTING IN WOMEN-OWNED BUSINESSES

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact:
Temren Wroge
202-738-3523
Temren.Wroge@sba.gov

THE NATIONAL WOMEN’S BUSINESS COUNCILISSUES POLICY RECOMMENDATIONS ON INVESTMENT IN WOMEN-OWNED BUSINESSES

WASHINGTON, D.C., January 16, 2020 – In its new Annual Report, the National Women’s Business Council (NWBC) has issued policy recommendations on angel investment tax credits with the aim of incentivizing new investments in women-owned firms.

Read More

ByNWBC Council

THE PASSAGE OF ‘BUILDING BLOCKS OF STEM ACT’

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact:
Temren Wroge
202-738-3523
Temren.Wroge@sba.gov

THE NATIONAL WOMEN’S BUSINESS COUNCIL APPLAUDS THE PASSAGE OF ‘BUILDING BLOCKS OF STEM ACT’

WASHINGTON, D.C., January 06, 2020 – S. 737, the Building Blocks of STEM Act, was signed into law by President Donald J. Trump on December 24, 2019. Sponsored by Sen. Jacky Rosen (D-NV), the bill instructs the National Science Foundation (NSF) to more equitably allocate funding for research with a focus on early childhood education. It also directs NSF to support research on factors that discourage or encourage girls to engage in STEM activities, including computer science.

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