Illinois Office of Minority Economic Empowerment

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Illinois Office of Minority Economic Empowerment

The Office of Minority Economic Empowerment will focus and promote opportunities for all minority communities across the state through targeted programs, resources and advocates. The goal is to ensure minority enterprises have an equal opportunity to contribute to the growth of the Illinois economy and serve as an advocate for businesses, entrepreneurs and start-ups in traditionally economically-disadvantaged groups.

  

OMEE Grants:

As part of DCEO's ongoing commitment to supporting businesses across the state, the department has issued $11 million in Minority-Owned Business Capital Grants, otherwise known as "OMEE Grants." These grants were distributed to businesses and business incubators across the state, with 20 small businesses and 12 business incubators receiving grant funds. To view a full list of grant recipients, please visit the links below.

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Doing Business with Government: Groupon and the Illinois Department of Commerce & Economic Opportunity present Doing Business with Government. We'll discuss fostering an inclusive and competitive business environment that will help Black Business Enterprises increase their capacity, grow revenue, and enhance credentials.

Please register below. 

August 13, 2020 - 2:00 PM in Central Time (US and Canada)

Description:

Groupon and the Illinois Department of Commerce & Economic Opportunity present Doing Business with Government. We'll discuss fostering an inclusive and competitive business environment that will help Black Business Enterprises increase their capacity, grow revenue, and enhance credentials.

Featured Speakers:

Keynote Welcome: Michael Negron, Acting Director, Illinois Department of Commerce & Corey Flournoy, Global Head of Inclusion & Diversity, Groupon

Moderator: Matthew Simpson, African American Business Development Manager, Illinois Department of Commerce & Economic Opportunity

Panelists:

  • Mark Ferguson, Assistant Deputy Director, US Small Business Administration
  • Larry Ivory, Chairman, National Black Chamber of Commerce
  • Kimberly Rudd, President, Rudd Resources, LLC and BEP Fast Track Recipient
  • Freida Curry, Director, Procurement Technical Assistance Center, Women’s Business Development Center

 

This is the first in a series of virtual panel discussions in celebration of National Black Business Month. For more on the series, visit gr.pn/nbbmmerchant

Register HERE:  https://bit.ly/2XcCtQW


Black Business Lending: Access to Capital & Tax Incentives:
 Groupon and the Illinois Department of Commerce & Economic Opportunity present Black Business Lending: Access to Capital & Tax Incentives. We'll cover how Black Businesses can access financial resources and tax incentives to scale and grow a sustainable business that increases overall economic opportunity and growth in communities of color.

August 20, 2020 - 2:00 PM in Central Time (US and Canada)

Featured Speakers:

Keynote Welcome: Illinois State Treasurer Michael Frerichs

Moderator: Matthew Simpson, African American Business Development Manager, Illinois Department of Commerce & Economic Opportunity

Panelists:

  • Bo Steiner, Deputy Director, U.S Small Business Administration
  • Brad McConnell, CEO, Accion Chicago, Chairman, National Black Chamber of Commerce
  • Jonathan McGee, Deputy Director, Regional Economic Development
  • Marcus Yancy, Economic Development Lending & Special Projects Officer, LISC Chicago


This is the second in a series of virtual panel discussions in celebration of National Black Business Month. For more on the series, visit gr.pn/nbbmmerchant.


Register HERE: 
 https://bit.ly/309UUaO

 

Navigating COVID-19 and Civil Unrest: Federal and State Resources for Black BusinessesGroupon and the Illinois Department of Commerce & Economic Opportunity present Federal and State Financial Resources for Black Businesses amidst COVID-19 and Civil Unrest. We'll cover how Black Businesses can take advantage of federal/state COVID-19 grant/loan relief programs and rebuild damaged businesses post-civil unrest.


August 27, 2020 - 2:00 PM in Central Time (US and Canada)


Featured Speakers:

Keynote Welcome: Lt. Governor Juliana Stratton & Groupon Interim CEO, Aaron Cooper

Moderator: Jonathan McGee, Deputy Director, Regional Economic Development

Panelists:

  • Marc Morial, President, National Urban League
  • Mark Ferguson, Assistant Deputy Director, United States Small Business Administration
  • Matthew Simpson, African American Business Development Manager, Illinois Department of Commerce & Economic Opportunity
  • Stephanie Hart, Founder, Brown Sugar Bakery

This is the third in a series of virtual panel discussions in celebration of National Black Business Month. For more on the series, visit gr.pn/nbbmmerchant.

Register HERE:  http://bit.ly/310SHhd

To learn more about Groupon's community-building efforts, please visit: community.groupon.com


 "National Black Business Month 2020" – celebrating entrepreneurship and self determination 

  • August 10: Black Women in Business - A discussion on Black women's experience in the world of business, will include conversations on the challenges as well as success stories from Black woman entrepreneurs from across the state. Click Here to Register 

  • August 12: How to best position yourself for Government Grants -  This webinar is for black women who are interested in preparing their business for government grants. We will be discussing GATA certification, NOFO writing, as well as best practices and common mistakes. Click Here to Register 

  • August 17: Access to Capital – A conversation on business finance, and how entrepreneurs – from start-ups experienced business owners – can put themselves in position to tap into capital markets. Click Here to Register 

 

  • August 19: "Leveling up your marketing and operations for success during COVID" 
    This Webinar is for Black Women who want to learn how to market their business and improve operations for success during a pandemic. Click Here to Register 

  

  • August 24: Strength in Numbers -  Discussing the need for collaboration in business development, and how unity brings success and facilitates growth. Will also touch on the reality that we cannot do it alone. Click Here to Register 

 

  • August 26: OMEE & Illinois SBDC Presents: ADME Each month we will offer a dynamic discussion on a business topic and highlight one of OMEE's focus communities. This month the discussion is marketing and the highlight is National Black Business Month! Click Here to Register 

 

  • August 31: A Vision for Your Brand – A conversation on branding and ensuring that entrepreneurs understand how to present and position their company in the best way possible. Click Here to Register 


OMEE Events:

The webinars are open to everyone; however, please note that there are webinars that do target specific communities. We are working towards conducting more webinars; therefore, if you don’t see one that appeals to you below OMEE or DCEO’s Regional Economic Development office may have one for you in the near future. Feel free to contact us at CEO.OMEE@illinois.gov.

For information please contact:

Diana Alfaro, Latino Business Development Manager (si hablo español)
Diana.alfaro@illinois.gov
312.919.3620

Matthew J. Simpson, African American Business Development Manager
Matthew.simpson@illinois.gov
312.520.0434

Ibie Hart, Woman’s Business Development Manager
Ibie.Hart@illinois.gov
773.951.8542

Tiffany T. Hawkins, Cannabis Loan and Grant Program Manager
Tiffany.Hawkins@illinois.gov
312.793.9702

Contact the First Stop Business Information Center Helpline at: 1-800-252-2923.  Spanish speaking assistance is also available at that number.

Follow DCEO on Social Media:

Twitter: @IllinoisDCEO
Facebook: @illinoisdceo
LinkedIn: Illinois Department of Commerce & Economic Opportunity

  

  

Program Partners