2021 Revitalizing Our Small & Minority Businesses
Historically, small and minority businesses have been perceived as the “Soul” of our nation’s diverse communities. However, since the onset of the global pandemic, COVID-19, the “Soul” of our community has been severely disrupted and in some instances, totally devastated, especially within communities of Color, and those in rural and urban areas. Many of our small and minority businesses will experience a greater rate of failure and economic challenges than their counterparts, given the lack of the government assistance which only amplifies the downfall. The lack of access to capital to sustain their businesses causes many small and minority businesses to confront adverse impacts, marginalizing their opportunities to succeed.
In the wake of lingering and more profound economic disruptions, Alabama A&M University College of Business and Public Affairs and the Center for Entrepreneurship, Innovation and Economic Development will focus its Quarterly Business Development Series on an array of related sessions, including roundtables and town halls to better inform our small businesses and other organizations with strategies to restore and revitalize these organizations dedicated to adapting and leading communities through recovery.
These next sessions will focus on issues of “Restoring the Soul of our communities,” and will be facilitated by key agency/organization representatives, and business leaders who will provide practical guidance and support to our community through interactive sessions. Our aim is to better understand the needs of our small and minority businesses which continue to experience insurmountable disruptions, and better inform our public of the myriad of problems which confront their economic and social being. As an outcome, we expect to develop a shared vision and collectively, provide viable pathways for moving beyond our circumstances. This Session is aimed to inform small and minority businesses with information to access severely needed financial capital, so desperately needed to retain their businesses as well as to maintain the “Soul” of the community.
Panelists will discuss access to capital.
Kim Carter Evans, MBA, VP & Managing Director
TruFund Financial Services, Inc. – Southeast Region
Roderick D. Perkins, Lender Relations & Economic Development
U.S. Small Business Administration, Alabama District Office, Birmingham, AL
Jason D. Phillippe, Senior VP, Commercial Relationship Manager
Regions Bank – Huntsville, AL
Dr. Qian Ruby Shen, MBA Program Director & Associate Professor of Finance
Alabama A&M University, Huntsville, AL
Leteria Moses Waters, Assistant VP
Synovus Financial Corporation, Huntsville, AL
Dr. Teresa Merriweather Orok, Executive Director
Center for Entrepreneurship, Innovation, & Economic Development
Alabama A&M University