The Governor’s Commission for Women is gearing up for its annual initiative to support women entrepreneurs across the state.
Over the next two months, it will mark the return of the Women-Owned Business Series for 2022, in partnership with the Beacon State Fund.
Texas ranks third among all states for women-owned businesses, boasting nearly over a million. In 2020, Texas was named the number one women-owned business-friendly state in 2020 and had five of the top 50 fastest-growing women-owned and led companies.
Small businesses across the state will be able to take part in two different opportunities: the annual pitch competition and a series of free webinars.
“The wealth of knowledge we are bringing together as a Commission will inspire and empower women throughout Texas,” said Amy Henderson, vice chairwoman of the Governor’s Commission for Women. “There is truly something for all industries to take part and gain something from the experience, as well as enter the pitch competition. Opening opportunities up to the younger generation of entrepreneurs with the Junior Pitch Competition is something we are very proud of and excited to see who applies among all ages.”
Female business leaders from each region of the state have the opportunity to enter a pitch competition, and potentially receive a $7,000 award from the Beacon State Fund.
Judges are looking to identify creative ways entrepreneurs and business owners are navigating through challenges and devising creative strategies as solutions.
Click here to fill out the application.
Click here to learn more information about requirements. The deadline is July 31 at 11:59 pm CT.
The Commission is also unveiling a Junior Pitch Competition for the first time ever, in partnership with Lemonade Day and the Beacon State Fund, to promote entrepreneurship among the state’s youngest business minds. The newly forged partnership with Lemonade Day is congruent with the mission of its program, that teaches youth how to start, own and operate their own business: a lemonade stand.
The award for junior level winners is $1,000.
Finalists from each region will be invited to present a live pitch to judges on the designated day listed below. Finalists will present immediately following the women-owned business series event.
Wednesday, Aug. 31, 2022: East Texas
Wednesday, Sept. 7, 2022: West Texas
Wednesday, Sept. 14, 2022: North Texas
Wednesday, Sept. 28, 2022: Central Texas
Thursday, Oct. 6, 2022: South Texas
The Governor’s Commission for Women was established in 1967 to serve as a champion and resource for women throughout the state of Texas. It specializes in providing leadership through outreach, education, research and referral services. Specifically, the commission focuses on advancing opportunities for women-owned businesses in Texas.
This year, the commission will host a series of informative webinars for each region of Texas with the intention of sharing information about resources for women-owned businesses and women entrepreneurs.
The first four events in the series will take place in a virtual format, with the fifth and final event culminating in person. Each session focuses on a primary topic, as well as spotlighting available resources for women-owned small businesses and entrepreneurs that may be untapped or unknown by community members.
“We wanted to be able to reach as many women and business owners as possible to give them resources and tell them that there’s hope and help – and provide great resources through our webinars series,” said Nathali Parker, chairwoman of the Governor’s Commission for Women. .
The webinars are free and open to communities across the state covering the following topics:
- Wednesday, Aug. 31, 2022: Legal & Accounting Considerations for Small Businesses (virtual)
- Wednesday, Sept. 7, 2022: Finance & Supply Chain Planning for Small Businesses (virtual)
- Wednesday, Sept. 14, 2022: Marketing Your Small Business (virtual)
- Wednesday, Sept. 21, 2022: Managing Burnout & Employee Retention for Small Businesses (virtual)
- Thursday, Oct. 6, 2022: In-Person South Padre Island Governor’s Small Business Series – Honoring Women-Owned Businesses
Click here to register for the webinars.
Parker said it’s important for small business owners to seize the opportunity for resources from the commission, especially as the pandemic and rising inflation present more challenges.
“I’m a fellow woman entrepreneur. And I understand just how intense in everchanging, especially now, it is to own a business,” she said. “It’s never easy but it is a time that we need to fortify together. Be a community. We have to come together because the only way small businesses can survive is if the community supports their neighbors.”
She encourages female entrepreneurs across Texas to also find help through the new Governor’s Small Business Resource Portal, which launched March 2021.