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Dear Friends, In 2012, the WBDC refreshed its branding with a new logo and tagline, “Your growth is our business.” The tagline and icon represent the continuous growth the WBDC has experienced over the past 26 years as well as our commitment to partnering with business owners for growth throughout the business life cycle.

Now in our 26th year, the Women’s Business Development Center (WBDC) has experienced the satisfaction of helping over 66,000 women transform their lives through business ownership.

The WBDC is expanding programs for established businesses, targeting programs for women veterans and “encore” entrepreneurs aged 50 and over, and enhancing our capacity building and procurement programs in our nine state Midwestern region. Access to capital continues to be critical for the sustainability and growth of women-owned businesses. The WBDC is augmenting its ability to deliver debt capital by increasing its direct lending and micro finance programs, all with the leadership of Emilia DiMenco, WBDC Chief Operating Officer. The WBDC also redesigned and relaunched its website, The updated website provides easier-to-find resources for businesses in all stages of growth, as well as registration for WBDC events and enhanced webinar capabilities. It is a foundation to provide broader access to small business education through new technology and online/on-demand entrepreneurial training. While these changes are significant to the WBDC, they are also significant to you, the business owner, supporter or advocate, because they provide a greater understanding of what the WBDC is doing to help the advancement of women’s economic independence. Over the last 15 years, the number of woman-owned businesses has grown 54%. With your support we can work together to continue to strengthen and grow profitable woman-owned businesses!

Hedy M. Ratner & S. Carol Dougal Co-Founders & Co-Presidents Women’s Business Development Center (WBDC)


& SERVICES Start-up Entrepreneurial Training & Business Counseling Over 120 clients started their entrepreneurial journey in the WBDC’s Starting a Business in Illinois workshop in the past year. As the core of the start-up business program, workshops and business counseling focusing on business basics provide an opportunity for prospective entrepreneurs to transition from concept to emerging business. With the introduction of webinars, the WBDC has been able to expand its reach to clients that otherwise may not be able to attend in-person training. The WBDC will continue to expand online offerings through online/on-demand training to be available in Spring 2013. Additionally, one-on-one business counseling provides start-up business owners the opportunity to further develop their business ideas and strategies with expert business counselors. Business Plan Writing Clinics offer facilitated, small group settings for business owners to fine tune their business plans.

Start-up & Established Access to Capital Program Access to capital is one of the greatest barriers for women business owners, and the WBDC is working hard to open more doors to lenders and alternative methods of financing for women business owners. Through the Access to Capital Program the WBDC provided

financial counseling, business financial literacy seminars, loan packaging and direct lending and assisted clients in achieving over $1.71 in financing over the past year. The WBDC continues to provide direct lending to qualified newlyformed and established Illinois businesses and intensive technical assistance to clients. Child Care Business Program & Child Care Business Expo Since the program’s inception in 1996, new and established home and center-based child care providers have found a valuable resource in the WBDC for the business side of child care. At the bilingual, Spanish and English, 14th Annual Child Care Business Expo, over 550 attendees received insights, resources and new opportunities to grow their businesses. When financial hardships strained budgets for Illinois child care providers, the WBDC worked with key partner organizations to advocate for providers and lowered the Expo registration fee to ensure providers were able to attend. With 31 workshops and over 400 participants, in 2012, the WBDC continued to fill a unique niche offering business education to help child care providers develop sustainable and profitable businesses. Latina Business Program Through the Latina Business Program, the WBDC offers Spanish language entrepreneurial training and business and financial counseling in Chicago area communities

The 12-week FastTrac workshop organized by the WBDC provided us with a solid structure and useful resources for the business planning efforts for our new company, CiTTA Partnership. It was also a great opportunity for us to meet and learn from (and with) peer entrepreneurial women in a supportive environment and greatly expanded our network. Belinda Li and Phyllis Lee CiTTA Partnership

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Our WBDC financial counselor helped us package, prepare and submit our loans to banks she thought would fit our business. She called and wrote letters on our behalf, as well as sat down with us to create Green Beginnings’ five year plan. Katie Darcy and Kristina Ramirez Green Beginnings

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with large and growing Hispanic populations including Pilsen, Little Village and the west suburbs. Working with various community organizations, such as the Little Village Chamber of Commerce, the WBDC served 300 individuals over the course of the year. The Latina Business Program hosted 46 workshops including Primeros Pasos (First Steps) and ¿Cómo Empezar Su Propio Negocio? (How to Start Your Own Business). Through these workshops individuals were able to build their business plans, marketing strategies and business financial analysis. Annual Entrepreneurial Woman’s Conference For 25 years the Entrepreneurial Woman’s Conference (EWC) has offered women business owners real-world solutions to the current problems they are facing and the opportunity to increase the profitability of their businesses by building relationships with corporate and government buyers, business experts and other women business owners. This year’s event included over 2,300 women business owners, supplier diversity professionals and buyers from the public and private sectors, and supporters of women’s economic and business development. The 26th Annual EWC took place September 20, 2012 at McCormick Place-West in Chicago. The Women’s Business and Buyers Mart featured corporations and government entities committed to buying from Women’s Business Enterprises (WBEs), and Contract Connections provided one-on-one opportunities to connect buyers and certified WBEs. The Women’s Forum Breakfast featured nationally known and successful women business owners. The Hall of Fame Awards Luncheon featured keynote speaker Lisa Price, founder of Carol’s Daughter, and awards given to successful women business owners and strong advocates for parity.

Established Entrepreneurial Training & Business Counseling Established business services assist business owners who have been in business for at least two years to build capacity, sustain and grow their business. Through business counseling, WBDC experts are able to develop long-term relationships with clients, providing guidance for next steps in business growth and access to WBDC services. Newly implemented online business counseling allowed individuals to meet with business experts from their office or home, making it convenient and accessible for a broader population. In 2012, the WBDC presented workshops, seminars, forums and roundtables that guided women in capacity building, financial planning, marketing, sales, procurement and exit strategies to help womenowned businesses to become more competitive in the marketplace.

Connection Points networking events brought together women business owners in specific industries to learn how they can do business together and hear from a panel of experienced women business owners. Special roundtable sessions with the U.S. Small Business Administration, U.S. General Services Administration, U.S. Department of Energy and the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago gave established business owners opportunities to dialogue with key officials and share their concerns and successes. Women’s Business Enterprise (WBE) Certification Program The WBDC provides qualified womenowned businesses with a nationallyrecognized WBE Certification through our partnership with the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC). The WBDC is the largest of fourteen WBENC Regional Partner Organizations, with over 1,200 WBEs certified in 2012.

Once certified, businesses gain access to a network of supportive programs, connections and events. Learning how to leverage WBE Certification and use it as the marketing tool is achieved through various workshops offered in the WBDC’s target markets of Chicago, Minneapolis, Milwaukee and St. Louis, and through webinars available to WBEs throughout the WBDC’s nine state region. The WBDC connects WBEs with corporate and government supplier diversity decision-makers through networking and special events, such as Contract Connections at the Annual Entrepreneurial Woman’s Conference, WBE Corporate Partner Panels and Procurement Meetings. PTAC Program Since 1994, the Procurement Technical Assistance Center (PTAC) at the WBDC has assisted business owners seeking federal, state and local government contracts. Through webinars, counseling sessions with experienced procurement staff and in-depth workshops, PTAC clients gain valuable knowledge about navigating the government contracting process. In 2012, WBDC PTAC clients achieved over $27 million in government and corporate contracts. The WBDC also partnered with American Express OPEN Victory in Procurement® to bring their successful Marketing to the Federal Government program to Chicago and St. Louis. Not only does the PTAC program work with clients, it also works on behalf of them – becoming the voice of WBE/ MBE/DBEs on public and private sector policy issues, initiatives and affirmative action contracting goals for certified minority and womenowned businesses, including co-hosting Procurement and Compliance Symposia and thought leadership events to enhance opportunities for women and minority-owned businesses.

Both La Clave (The Key to Business Success) and Both La Clave Pasos helped me Primeros Pasos and (FirstPrimeros Steps) helped me figure figure out marketing strategies, branding and out marketing strategies, branding and ways to ways tomy finance my business me finance business and gaveand me gave the satisfaction satisfaction of working onissomething that ofthe working on something that mine; a business is mine; a business that employes two staff that employs two staff members and is growing members every day. and is growing every day. Elvira ElviraAbarca Abarca, Tutti Frutti Tutti Frutti Coffee Shop

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The WBDC encouraged participation in WBE networking, such as the Annual Entrepreneurial Woman’s Conference, business planning/assessment seminars and WBE project leads, which led to the beginning of relationships which have or are anticipated to lead to additional project opportunities. Rosemary Sweirk Direct Steel

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The WBDC has been a great support partner by providing one-on-one counseling sessions, conferences and by offering referrals to government agencies to assist in bidding on government contracts. Debra Moore German Moore Security Services

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The effects of our WBE certification have really picked up steam in recent months. It definitely opened a door for us at one large national retailer. We’re also finding that KNOCK clients who previously were not involved in the program are now recognizing the importance of becoming [WBDC] corporate members. In addition, the WBDC-MN has connected us with entrepreneurial women, giving us the opportunity to work with start-up businesses at a very interesting stage of their business plan. Lilian Hall


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Board of



Chairperson Debra JenningsJohnson (1)

Director, Supplier Diversity, BP America, Inc.

Co-Presidents Hedy M. Ratner

Co-President, Women’s Business Development Center

S. Carol Dougal

Co-President, Women’s Business Development Center

8 Vice Chairperson Linda Chaplik Harris (2)

Partner, SNR Denton

Secretary Pam McDonough (3)










Audit Committee Chair Norma Lauder (5)

Director, MS Tax Program, University of Illinois

CEO, DeAngelo/ McDonough Construction Management Company

Members Laurel G. Bellows (6)

Treasurer Sandra Rand (4)

Michelle Blaise (7)

Former Supplier Diversity Manager, United Airlines

Staff and

CONSULTANTS Eva Brown Deon Crayton Freida Curry Mia Delano Carolina Diaz Rebecca Diaz Emilia DiMenco Carol Dougal Natasha Fedorova Elizabeth Gardner Ellenie Girma Bethany Hartley Deborah Minor-Harvey Richard Henderson Meg Herman


Kelly Hinman Cynthia Johnson Danae Kovac Katie Lang Grace Lopez Janice Lopez Maria Lopez Debbi Lyall Georgia Marsh Teresa Prim Hedy Ratner Juanita Smith Peggy Smith Kristin Travis

Principal, The Bellows Group P.C.

VP Engineering & Project Management, ComEd

Alison Chung (8) President, TeamWerks

Risa R. Davis (9) Area Manager, Commercial Banking Group, Citibank Illinois Emilia DiMenco (10) Chief Operating Officer, Women’s Business Development Center

Shelley Stern (13) Community Outreach Director, Central and Southeast Regions, Microsoft Corporation Ex-Officio Members Mellody Hobson,

Jeanne Mandoza (11) Director of Marketing for Illinois, UPS

President, Ariel Investments, LLC

Arabel Alva Rosales (12)

Financial Analyst, President, Terry Savage Productions,

President, AAR & Associates, Ltd.

Terry Savage

Pamela B. Strobel





FUnding sources

• Served 3,300 clients. • Certified Over 1,200 women-owned businesses as WBEs.


• Provided 226 WORKSHOPS – ­ – including 18 WEBINARS.




Partnership Fees


Training & Seminars

• Conducted 2,187 Counseling Sessions. • Achieved $1.71 MILLION in financing for small business clients. • Facilitated Over $27 Million in Government Contracting.



WBE Program






% 32 Caucasian



UNDER Age 35


African American



54% 46%




Management & General



MORE than $45,000


Ages 35-54

over age 54 Hispanic

Less than $45,000

Corporate/ Foundations








Since its inception, the WBDC has stayed true to its mission and has never accepted or pursued grants or contracts which did not directly support that mission. To that end, the WBDC has maintained a diversified funding portfolio and a strong focus on the most critical needs of women entrepreneurs. The WBDC is a responsible steward of the monies put in its care. Staff is competitively compensated and provided benefits commensurate with those in corporations, and the WBDC consistently maintains a reserve equal to five months of operating expenses. In 26 years, the WBDC has always received an unqualified opinion within its annual audit, and there have never been material discrepancies in any fiscal reviews conducted by individual government entities. Finally, the WBDC is compliant with Sarbanes-Oxley guidelines as applied to non-profits. A copy of the financial statements or audit will be provided by the WBDC upon request.


Program Services

BUDGET 2005 $2.7 MILLION 2006 $2.76 MILLION 2007 $2.85 MILLION 2008 $3.54 MILLION 2009 $3.26 MILLION 2010 $3.30 MILLION 2011 $3.30 MILLION 2012 $3.45 MILLION


The Women’s Business Development Center (WBDC) extends its sincere gratitude to the following organizations and individuals for their support of the WBDC and the 26th Annual Entrepreneurial Woman’s Conference. We applaud the accomplishments we have jointly achieved towards the advancement of women business owners, and look forward to many more years of successful collaboration.

2012 WBDC Contributors* Marquee Government Partners City of Chicago, Department of Community Development Cook County, Bureau of Community Development The Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, Illinois Entrepreneurship Network, Small Business Development Center U.S. Department of Energy U.S. Small Business Administration U.S. Small Business Administration – Office of Women’s Business Ownership Marquee Contributors ($40,000+) Bank of America Charitable Foundation, Inc. BMO Harris Bank N.A. BP America, Inc. Citi Foundation Deluxe Corporation Foundation Discover Edward M. Marx Foundation Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses, Chicago The Nielsen Company Robert R. McCormick Foundation Walgreen Co. Walmart Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC) Premier Contributors ($25,000-$39,999) Allstate Insurance CDW CNA Insurance Companies ComEd Dominick’s Finer Foods Fredrikson & Byron, P.A. Lurie Besikof Lapidus & Company, LLP Microsoft Corporation OfficeMax PNC U.S. Bank United Airlines UPS W.W. Grainger, Inc. Major Contributors ($10,000-$24,999) American Express OPEN Cardinal Health Citibank, N.A.

Deere & Company Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, Kansas City, Minneapolis and St. Louis Grosvenors Holdings Health Care Service Corporation/ BlueCross BlueShield of Illinois INTREN Inc. Kayhan International Kraft Foods Macy’s National Van Lines, Inc. Northern Trust Northstar Lottery Group Office Depot PepsiCo, Inc. The Richard H. Driehaus Foundation Smead Manufacturing Company Southwest Airlines Co. Target Corporation Turner Construction Company Foundation University of Illinois Wrigley Contributors ($2,000-$9,999) 3M Ameren Corporation American Airlines American Family Insurance Ameriprise Financial, Inc. AT&T Avis Budget Group, Inc. Baxter Healthcare Corporation Best Buy Corporation Blue Cross Blue Shield of Minnesota BUNN Butler Tool, Inc. C.H. Robinson Worldwide, Inc. Cargill, Inc. Cedar Concepts Corporation Charter One Bank CHEP Chicago Zoological Society City Colleges of Chicago Cooper Power Systems Cub Foods CVM Solutions, a Kroll Company Deluxe Corporation Ecolab Edelman Elizabeth Beidler Tisdahl Foundation Evergreen Supply Company Francis Beidler Foundation Fundamental Capital Partners

General Mills Harley-Davidson Motor Company Haworth, Inc. Hospira, Inc. Integrys Energy Group/People’s Gas Jack & Goldie Wolfe Miller Fund Jewish Women’s Foundation of Metropolitan Chicago John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation KellyMitchell Group, Inc. Leo Burnett USA, Inc. McCormick Place Chicago, An SMG Managed Facility McDonald Hopkins LLC Major League Baseball Manpower MasterCard Worldwide Mayo Clinic Medtronic, Inc. Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago Minneapolis Public School District Motorola Solutions, Inc. Navistar Nicor Gas Northwestern University – Purchasing Resource Services Novation The Private Bank Rush University Medical Center SCORE Service Club of Chicago Staples, Inc. SUPERVALU Inc. TeamWerks Trinal, Inc. Union Pacific Railroad United Scrap Metal UnitedHealth Group The University of Chicago The University of Chicago Medicine University of Minnesota VWR International, LLC William G. McGowan Charitable Fund, Inc. Wisconsin Energy Corporation Xcel Energy Media Partners Black EOE Journal Chicago Sun-Times Comcast Crain’s Chicago Business Enterprising Women Magazine

Extra Newspaper Hispanic Network Magazine Hoy Newspaper La Raza Lawndale News MBE Connect MBE Magazine Minority Business News USA (MBN USA) Minority Entrepreneur Newspaper NBC5 Chicago Pioneer Press Professional Woman’s Magazine Project Eve Reflejos Newspaper Telemundo Today’s Chicago Woman U.S. Veteran’s Magazine Univision Radio WGBO – TV66 Univision Women’s Enterprise Magazine (WE USA) WVON Radio Individual Donors ($1,000+) Barbara Anasenes Ann Drake Tammie Johnson Norma Lauder Lois LeMenager Francine Manilow Marcela Orr Patricia Redzus Arabel Alva Rosales Gwen Ryan Julia Stasch Maria Wynne

The WBDC whole-heartedly thanks all of its committee members, advisors, strategic partners, clients and every individual who has generously given their support. Our strength comes from your consistent and dedicated support. *Donors listed are those committed by 11/20/12; we have made every effort to ensure that all contributors are recognized.

Women’s Business Development Center (WBDC) 8 South Michigan Avenue, 4th Floor Chicago, IL 60603 T: 312.853.3477 F: 312.853.0145 @WBDC

The WBDC is grateful to BlueCross BlueShield of Illinois for underwriting the printing of this report.

WBDC 2012 Annual Report  

The Women's Business Development Center Presents Our 2012 Annual Report