( ENSPIRE Community ) The Bronx Community Comes Together: A Lesson in “Being Your Own Boss”
ENSPIRE Contributor: Kelsea Campbell
The month of March is dedicated to the powerful influence women had, have and will continue to have in history. On Wednesday, March 22nd, that dedication was focused on the power of female entrepreneurs, specifically in the Bronx, New York community. “Being Your Own Boss,” was the message received from the panel discussion with women entrepreneurs, giving their real-life advice and understanding of what it took each of them during their independent paths.
The event, hosted by Assembly Member Michael Blake, took place in the Fellowship Hall of the Bronx’s Goodwill Baptist Church. Refreshments were served as audience members arrived and panelists took their seats. Assembly Member Blake kicked off the event with a brief welcome, sharing his excitement for what he hopes will be the first of monthly get-togethers with the influential panelists. He then turned the attention to the panel’s moderator Carra Wallace, Senior Vice President and Chief Diversity Officer, IMB Development Corp. Wallace had the panelists introduce themselves to the audience of future and current entrepreneurs.
Panelists included Dr. Stephannie Addo-Zuniga, Founder, Successful Power Women Network & Founder, Champs for Autism
; Victoria Flores, Co-Founder, Lux Beauty Club
; Rosa Garcia, Owner, Mott Haven Bar and Grill
; Jessica “Remo” Saul, Founder, The Art of Stepping
; Janice Saunders, Founder, One Jazzy Life Development Coaching Company
; Jacquette M. Timmons
, President & CEO, Sterling Investment Management, Inc. Among the panelists was ENSPIRE’s very own co-founder and editor Ese Ofurhie who shared with the audience her personal story of how she came to create the publication.
Through a series of questions, Wallace moderated the conversation as the panelists spoke of the successes and struggles they faced in opening their businesses. Each one had an interesting, yet relatable point of view. The bulk of the conversation focused on how they were able to acquire the money to fund their dream and the realities of being able to take care of yourself along the entrepreneur journey. From what each of the panelists discussed it takes a lot of discipline to have the mental, physical and emotional toughness to be able to do something you love that not everyone may agree with. Other topics included the balance of personal lives and family, networking, sacrifice and social media.
Following the discussion, audience members were given the opportunity to ask the panelists some questions regarding their journeys, and for some advice. Panelists shared their perspectives on the importance that mentorship can or cannot have and offered financial and personal advice. It was a great event that encouraged the audience and it gave the panelists an opportunity to be congratulated on their individual successes as they continue to build their businesses and brands while giving back to the community.
The Office of Assembly Member Michael Blake gifted panelists and attendees with a copy of Why We March – Signs of Protests and Hope: Voices From The Women’s March.Compiled by Women’s March organizers, in partnership with Condé Nast and Glamour magazine Editor in Chief Cindi Leive, Together We Rise—published for the one-year anniversary of the event—is the complete chronicle of this remarkable uprising.