Why are there so few women entrepreneurs and top-ranked female business executives? According to the New York Times, women are such a relative rarity in the corner office that there are more CEOs named John in the United States than female CEOs.
That needs to change, and the College believes there is a huge potential for innovation and economic expansion for women and by women. To address the shortage of female entrepreneurs, the College of Charleston will host the Celebrating Women Entrepreneurs Summit on March 18, 2016. Attendees to the statewide summit will learn how a number of dynamic, female entrepreneurs have secured funding, found mentors and cultivated the elements needed to launch and grow their businesses. The program is sponsored by Think Ideally and will showcase inspiring speakers and a live pitch competition.
The day starts with a welcome from College of Charleston President Glenn F. McConnell ’69. Then the director of the Office of Innovation at the S.C. Department of Commerce, Amy Love, will take over as master of ceremonies for the summit. Erin Andrew, director of the Office of Women’s Business Ownership at the U.S. Small Business Administration, will present a keynote speech on “Trending Now: Sparking New Opportunities for Women Entrepreneurs.”
A panel of female entrepreneurs will speak on creativity in business, including:
- Jeni Britton Bauer, founder and CEO of Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams,
- Natalia Castillo, founder and CEO of Escapada Living,
- Carolyn Hunter, president and owner of several South Carolina McDonald’s franchises,
- Krissa Watry, co-founder and CEO of Dynepic, Inc.,
- and Nina Sossamon-Pogue, vice president of media for Benefitfocus.
Anita Zucker, chairperson and CEO of The InterTech Group will close the summit with a keynote speech entitled “Love the Journey.”
Registration for the event is open now. Tickets are free to current College of Charleston students and $25 for all others. For more details, check out the event’s website or contact Gibbon Miler at 843.953.2111.
Additional sponsors for the event include: S.C. Department of Commerce, The McNair Center for Entrepreneurship at Columbia College, Skirt magazine, and the Town of Mount Pleasant.
Apply here for a chance to compete in the pitch competition.