Happy International Women’s Day!
Today celebrates of the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women the world over. And I am HERE for it! Truly, walking the winding road of entrepreneurship alongside fellow females counts as one of the most gratifying achievements of my life.
According to the State of Women-Owned Businesses Report, women-owned businesses totaled 12.3 million in 2018. Over the past two decades, the number of women-owned businesses has grown 114%. Compare that to the national growth rate of 44% for all new companies!
We’re also fortunate to have based our company in one of the best regions for women-owned businesses. DC and Maryland boast the highest percentage of women-owned businesses, relative to men-owned and equally-owned. It’s fertile soil for continued growth.
But it’s not just about our success. It never has been. It never will be. The collective achievement of women (and men) is essential for a brighter future.
The theme of this year’s International Women’s Day is Balance for Better. While we wholly believe that honoring the ingenuity, initiative and individuality of women ought to be an everyday activity, we are thrilled to take today to share a handful of female entrepreneurs we admire most.
From food truck vendors to nonprofit leaders, please join us in celebrating and supporting these outstanding female entrepreneurs:
Ari Antonelli, partner of Amedia Strategy, has built a strong media agency and sustained long-term success over the years. She provides her customers with solid results in strategic planning and media buying, which is why she has grown organically year-over-year.
Stacey Brown of Signarama truly understands the value and meaning of brand. She infuses that expertise into everything she does. Stacey is a huge supporter of small and diverse business and gives back whenever she can. Whether she is guest speaking at conferences for emerging businesses or championing the efforts of the National Minority Supplier Development Council, Stacey is always promoting small business growth.
Kristina Kern started the first popcorn truck in DC, Stella’s PopKern, six years ago. She has since generated a following like you wouldn’t believe. She started Stella’s to show her daughter that anything is possible. And it is true. Follow her schedule and grab a bag, or 3, of some of her awesome flavors.
Susan Schaefer, owner of Resource Partners, has carved a niche in nonprofit program development and foundation relations. Susan has strengthened the nonprofit industry with stronger business models, programming, messaging and income streams. Board service has always been a big part of her personal and professional life, so Susan devotes a good deal of her time to strengthening boards of directors.
Jeannie Esti, Principal at Compagna Enterprises, is like Oprah-light. The name of her business says it all. Compagna is the Italian word for partner—a person who takes part in an undertaking with another. As a corporate consultant and executive coach, she truly has innate gifts to help people do the hard work to live their best life.
Go deeper: See the best experiential marketing campaigns celebrating women and girls.