If you missed this year's Sistahs in Business Expo then I hate to tell you that you missed out on a day filled with gems, tasty treats, phenomenal businesswomen, skin and hair care products, dope authors, change agents, and the list can literally go on.
When Aisha Taylor Issah launched her expo back on April 14th, 2018 in Newark, New Jersey, she understood the assignment by creating space for Black women to understand and cultivate their assignments as well. This expo is known for connecting like-minded women and boosting one's hunger for entrepreneurship.
Even though this pandemic changed many individuals' plans, Aisha refused to let the postponement of the 2020 expo stop her from doing what God called her to do in 2021. She spent time brainstorming how she could still serve women despite the health crisis that shook the world. As a result, she debuted 'Marketplace Mondays' and opened up her own store. This is truly an illustration of what Aisha stated, "When you do the work, God will do the rest". Aisha doingthe work is what made this year's expo another success story in the books.
Bevy Smith is an Author, Business Woman, the host of SiriusXM's Bevelations on Radio, and Television Personality. Her warm and nurturing deamanor was greatly received at the expo. She shared with attendees her journey, the purpose of her book, "Bevelations" and even provided us with a lesson about the importance of pitching ourselves whenever an opportunity arise.
The gems continued when Yandy Smith arrived and shared about the importance of faith, the importance of dreaming big and having a vision, and her professional goal. She did not hold back and provided attendees with tangible tips on how they can get to the next level.
Not only were the features amazing, so were the vendors! I am going to highlight some of the businesses/entrepreneurs I had the privilege to speak with.
SheCasso is an art and candle business that is based out of New Jersey. Whitney shared that she began painting back in high school since it was a soothing outlet for her. Little did she know that the joy she found in art, would lead her to create beautiful art pieces for numerous customers. Whitney's creative side was only heightened from there. Years later, she would later explore teaching herself how to make candles after attending an expo that positively changed her life.
Jamiyl (pictured left) and Tracy-Ann (pictured right) Samuels are a couple that is determined to bring awareness on topics such as autism, the impact that autism can have on siblings, and children's loss of a father. They have eloquently written children's books, based on their personal lives, that not only educate but also empower many families.
Tracy-Ann, who is the Director of Social Services shared that their mission is to give back to the community. She and her husband have been fortunate to have done so through various partnerships with schools in NJ and NYC.
Blue Counseling And Wellness Center is based in New Jersey and founded by sisters: Chesney Blue (picture above) and Chanta Blue. The practice began 5 years ago with the goal to "transform the mindset and physical health in order to get people whole". What I found to be unique about the Black-owned practice is that there is a nutritional component. When speaking with Chesney, she shared that some of the trends she has seen in clients are: eating disorders and diabetes. Mental health is an invaluable investment that is slowly but surely becoming the norm in the Black community. Chesney stated that she has seen a rise in the number of Black individuals who are currently seeking Black health professionals since George Floyd.
Precious L. Williams is the definition of "it is never too late for God to use you". She is known as "the killer pitch master" and has trained over 150 pitch winners. Her commitment to helping women up their pitch game has positively impacted her business and led to several features such as Shark Tank, Forbes, Black Enterprise, Google, and more. She even wrote her books in her 40s.
Overall, this year's expo was truly a success. I left feeling empowered, creative, and most importantly with bigger faith through the stories and gems that I learned from other women.
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