Celebrating Women Entrepreneurs Globally and Locally
We are coming off a crazy--in a good way--past couple of months, with all sorts of amazing things happening. There was the M3 1000 event in Philadelphia, our Leadership Institute in Grand Rapids, and so many great stories from community members – new and old – about how well they are growing as business owners, as well as revenue-wise. Whew!
In mid-October I headed to Deauville, France, to participate in the Women’s Forum for the Economy and Society, a two-day long international conference exploring women’s futures politically, economically, socially and technologically. I also had the privilege of being a judge at the Cartier Entrepreneurship Women’s Initiative Awards, an international business plan competition created in 2006 by Cartier. This was my second time participating and we saw some incredible businesses, and this year’s winners were from right here in New York City! Summer Rayne Oakes and Benita Singh are the founders of Source4 Style which connects brands and fashion designers to a network of global suppliers that sources sustainable, ecological materials, and believe me, these ladies are going places!
There were lectures on the role of Brazilian women in business and politics; how Japanese women are facing the countries’ post-earthquake challenges; and the role of Generation Y in the workplace. I was on a panel discussing whether it’s a good time to be a woman in various countries and regions. (My answer? In the US, a resounding, emphatic, YES!) you can see photos and learn more about the event here.
I can’t tell you how happy it makes me to know that there is such a vibrant, global community dedicated to empowering women entrepreneurs. And the support within the M3 community is also extraordinary. We saw dozens of M3 Awardees fly in from all over the country to give their time, advice and support to the women pitching their businesses at M3 1000 Philadelphia, and Kim Curtis, who just won the M3 Award in Spring 2011, trekked all the way to Grand Rapids, to share her advice, insights, and support to the women entrepreneurs there. And we’re not stopping any time soon. Coming up in 2012, we have exciting new initiatives across the country so stay tuned. I think you for your support, and look forward to sharing more of it in the next year!