2019-2020 Annual Report
MISSION Our Mission:The mission of the New Orleans Black Chamber of Commerce (NORBCC) is to support, promote, and educate our members for sustainable growth and expansion. Also, to empower and sustain the African- American business community through entrepreneurship and economic activity in the greater New Orleans region and global economy as a whole. The NORBCC Is focused on promoting inclusivity and awareness of the opportunities for local small and emerging minority-owned businesses within our 10-parish region of Orleans, Jefferson, St. Tammany, Tangipahoa, St. Bernard, Washington, St. John, St. James, St. Charles, and Plaquemines. Through our outreach efforts and programs, we work to connect the local business community by communicating policy updates, contracting opportunities, financial assistance, and educational courses focused on strengthening this viability of our minority business community. VISION The New Orleans Regional Black Chamber of Commerce (NORBCC) advocates to influence and sustain the economic viability of Black businesses and our community.
2019-2020 ANNUAL REPORT
NEW ORLEANS REGIONAL BLACK CHAMBER OF COMMERCE 2020 BOARD OF DIRECTORS
MARGARET MONTGOMERYRICHARD, PH.D. Executive Committee Chair
KELISHA GARRETT Executive Director
Josline Gosserand Frank
Executive Committee Vice Chair
Executive Committee Secretary
Chair, Finance Percy Manson
Alfonso Gonzalez II
Cierra S. Harrison, Membership/Office Coordinator 9
MESSAGE FROM THE CHAIRWOMAN Dear Chamber Members, Sponsors, Partners, and Friends: On behalf of the Board of Directors and staff, thank you for your continued support and commitment to the New Orleans Regional Black Chamber of Commerce (NORBCC). We all can agree we are living in unprecedented times and that 2020 brought its share of unique challenges and opportunities. The 2019-2020 Annual Report offers an overview of NORBCC activities for the last year and is a snapshot of the work in time of the work that has been accomplished on behalf of our members and the business community. NORBCC staff and Board has continued to serve our membership during these unprecedented times, providing advocacy, awareness, and access to opportunities through programming, resources, and support that is needed. Over the past nine months, we engaged in discussions and meetings with key business leaders of major corporations, anchor institutions, city and state leaders regarding diversity, equity, and inclusion. NORBCC represents a collective voice of approximately 330 Black-owned businesses throughout the Greater New Orleans region. This year, our work evolved into a movement focused on changing the physical position of small minority and women-owned businesses in the economic landscape of New Orleans and the entire State of Louisiana. In response to the heightened exposure of racism, economic injustice, and inequality, NORBCC issued “A CALL TO ACTION” for measurable and enforced solutions. Solutions accompanied by long-term financial investments from local, state, federal government agencies, private corporations, and philanthropic organizations. This movement is laser-focused on enhancing our member benefits of: ACCESS to information and educational opportunities through webinars -Straight Talk Series, the weekly newsletter, and partnerships with Goldman Sachs 10,000, BuildNola, InvestNOLA, Greater New Orleans Foundation, and Tulane Family Business Center. AWARENESS of procurement opportunities and technical assistance to capital such as PPP, EDIL, and the Main Street Programs. ADVOCACY on issues, directly and indirectly, impacting small businesses and the community at the local and state levels providing members with pertinent information on the legislative process and access to government officials and agencies.
A special note of thanks to the Chamber’s Board of Directors, staff, and NORBCC Partners for supporting our mission and making a “greater commitment” to the Chamber, the membership, and our business community. You need to know the New Orleans Regional Black Chamber of Commerce is here to support you. With Warm Regards, Margaret Montgomery-Richard, Ph.D. Chair
OUR PAST, OUR FUTURE AND THE MEASURE OF OUR IMPACT Our Path This has been a journey filled with growth, accomplishments, and success that have touched the lives of many and established the foundation for legacies to come.
The support shown by the board of directors, members of various committees, ambassadors and our internal team has helped to form the organization that we are today. Over the past four years, we have defined our value, impacted the business community and provided leadership within our 10-parish region to earn national recognition for the work that we have done. Our Drive The impact of the pandemic and exposure of the disparities within the minority business community has helped to force conversations regarding the systemic inequities faced by businesses operated by black and brown business owners further confirming the reason we exist and the importance of the services we provide.
As a small business owner, I uniquely understood the journey of our members and the impediments we each have to conquer on a day to day basis in effort to remain visible, viable and capable of delivering the services we provide. As a leading chamber in our region, we identified that our members required unique service offerings that included the ability to provide 1:1 support to our members and assistance to our corporate partners. Our Accomplishments Since 2016, we have welcomed over 300 new businesses as members of NORBCC, grown our corporate partners from five to twenty, increased the attendance of our annual policy luncheon to over 1000 business leaders, hosted over 150 events including new members orientation, educational seminars, virtual webinars , candidate forums, round table meetings, and participated in legislative discussions focused on removing barriers of entry and boosting awareness of opportunities available for response from our membership.
In addition, we created the Ladies With Drive golf clinic and have trained over 50 participants introducing one of the oldest networking sports to our membership. Our Inspiration In 4 years, we have seen the creation of businesses, formation of joint venture partnerships and acquisitions of new businesses by our members.
Our advocacy has shown increases in the responses by member businesses and resulted in multi-year, multi-milliondollar contracts provided by our members to organizations within our 10-Parish region. The success obtained by our member businesses and increase in utilization by our corporate partners identifies the need to continue providing service and support for our business community. Next steps The path forward is one of infinite opportunities. As I pass the baton to the next leader of NORBCC, my prayer is that you continue to maintain our core commitment to advocate on behalf of our minority business community, stay relevant, and expand membership ensuring that every minority owned business in the 10-parish region is a member of the NORBCC. While my focus will transition to building the foundation of strong business chambers across our state, it will be with the intent to strengthen our voice, train our workforce, build the capacity of our small businesses but above all to ensure that Louisianaâ€™s economy is one that is both equitable and inclusive.
Sincerely, Kelisha Garrett Executive Director
Board at work
The NORBCC Board of Directors work on the strategic plan to enhance the organization's structure and its growth of membership.
THANK YOU TO OUR NORBCC PARTNERS
Over the last year, NORBCC has had the opportunity to work with and advocate for its members via community boards, commissions and committees including: LED Alliance for Economic Inclusion Committee, City of New Orleans â€“ COVID-19 Business Leaders, Resilience Louisiana Commission, Louisiana Economic Recovery Task Force, Main Street Recovery Grant Program, Business Council, City of New Orleans Economic Advisory Board, PowerMoves NOLA, UNCF Advisory Board, Tulane LePage Center, JEDCO, SBA, FICO, and the Urban Land Institute.
NORBCC's programatic engagement included partnerships with:
NORBCC's membership participated in the following events hosted by the chamber: Annual Policy Luncheon, Crescent City Golf Classic, Straight Talk Series, Chamber Chat and Chew, and the Annual Members' Winter Extravaganza.
330 60 85 new members in 2020
3,291 2,967 instagram facebook followers
Black Businesses Matter. PJ's Coffee serves a wide variety of hot, iced & frozen coffee beverages using the top 1% of Arabica beans, as well as organic tea & fresh breakfast items. Recently, due to her membership to the New Orleans Regional Black Chamber of Commerce, owner Stephanie Chambliss was awarded a contract from the City of New Orleans to provide and deliver food to first responders.
One of the best decisions we've made for our business is to become members of the New Orleans Regional Black Chamber. Through NORBCC we were introduced to and became members of the US Black Chamber and the Black Directory. These organizations offer us the opportunity to network with businesses all over the United States. Also, thanks to NORBCC, we are made aware of every funding opportunity, educational webinar and other resources offered to businesses, ALL businesses. We receive notices far in advance of deadlines which gives us time to register for online opportunities, gather information, reach out for assistance in completing applications, etc. The staff at NORBCC are professional, knowledgeable and most of all accessible. Kelisha and Cierra will promote a relationship of support and encouragement with you and your business.
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NEW ORLEANS REGIONAL BLACK CHAMBER OF COMMERCE 2019-2020 ANNUAL REPORT