Davis explained the forum as a pathway that will help connect the region’s leaders to business owners and entrepreneurs to help make the promise of the inclusive economic development a reality for all diverse residents. “One of the goals of the forum is for entrepreneurs to connect with area business owners, technical assistance providers, and policy-makers focused on opportunities in tech, construction, urban agriculture, engineering, and architecture.”
Melinda F. Emerson, known as the SmallBuzLady and bestselling author of Become Your Own Boss in 12 Months, is the keynote luncheon speaker. The Pittsburgh native is founder of #SmallBizChat and is recognized as a social media expert as well as a small business resource. Considered America’s No. 1 small business expert, she has been a thriving entrepreneur for nearly 15 years and is an internationally-known keynote speaker. Her small business advice is widely read, reaching more than three million entrepreneurs each week on the internet. A pioneer in social media marketing, she is the creator and host of #Smallbizchat, the longest running live chat on Twitter for small business owners.
Various key local participants in the forum include Dr. Kelly Hunt, District Director, U.S. Small Business Administration, Pittsburgh District Office, Valerie McDonald Roberts, Chief Urban Affairs Officer, Office of Mayor Bill Peduto, and Bill Flanagan, Chief Corporate Relations Officer, Allegheny Conference on Community Development. Dr. Patrick Mulvihill, Rowland School of Business at Point Park University, will co-chair the event with Davis.
The Black Women and Family Summit’s Friday activities will end at CCAC’s South Campus with Youth Night activities featuring spoken-word artists, vocalists and liturgical dancers. Saturday’s workshops will be moderated by Sharise Nance, LCSW, CCTP, author and co-owner of HandinHand Counseling Services, LLC, Cecelia Ware, executive director of Infinite Lifestyle Solutions, Jaqueline Hill, business strategist and community organizer and Fawn Walker Montgomery, McKeesport councilwoman and co-founder of Take Action Mon-Valley. Workshop topics will address personal and professional development, issues relating to violence, why and how to become involved in the political process and will feature local women who have achieved getting elected to public offices.
Discussion by Melanie Campbell, convener of the Black Women’s Roundtable and President and CEO of the National Coalition on Black Civic Participation both based in Washington D.C, will tie in with current events and the results and findings of the BWR’s “Black Women in the U.S. and Key States, 2017: Moving Our Agenda Forward for a Post-Obama Era” report.
“Times are different today than they were a year ago,” Campbell said. “The time is now. We have to be fired up and ready for the fight as we move our agenda forward in a post-Obama era. Throughout the years, we have proven that we were ready for the fight and during this summit we aim to prepare participants to sustain, overcome and take action. We hold on to our theme that ‘You Are the One, You’ve Been Waiting For.’”
Keynote speaker during the Aug. 19 summit awards luncheon will be former Pittsburgher Sherrie Massie. “Sherrie is a great motivator. Her belief that there is greatness within each of us is something we all need to hear and realize about ourselves,” said Moore.
“Empowering others to become the champions God created them to be is my passion,” Massie said. “I am focused on using kingdom principles to build wealth and using wealth to build the kingdom, and I am glad to share my knowledge in my hometown.”
(For more information on the Collective Community Impact Forum, go to http://davisconsultsolutions.com. And for information on the Black Women Family Summit, go to http://www.sisterssavingourselvesnow.com.)
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