Saturday, December 08, 2018

Focus on Female Founders

Beer maker Constellation Brands plans to invest $100 million over the next ten years in businesses led or founded by women. Why?  Because they are betting that female entrepreneurs will help it grow.
The strategy is designed to help Constellation Brands make and market products that resonate with women, partner with sector disruptors and enhance its talent pipeline.
The project is called Focus on Female Founders.  So far, Constellation has invested in two women-led startups through the new initiative: Austin Cocktails and Vivify Beverages.

Learn more about how CB is investing in female entrepreneurs to help sell its alcohol.

Interesting related article:  Female founders deserve to be funded for their talent, not their gender.

Saturday, December 01, 2018

Women Entrepreneurs Are Stepping Up to the Plate With Personal Investments in Startups

While raising money is still hard for almost every entrepreneur, there's a growing sense that it's getting easier for women at long last.
Notably, women entrepreneurs are stepping up to the plate: In a survey of 279 U.S. women entrepreneurs conducted jointly by Inc. and Fast Company, a surprising 42 percent say that in addition to running their own companies, they make personal investments in startups. On the flip side, of those who have raised outside capital, 38 percent said they specifically sought out female investors. 
As of November 2017, according to the Angel Capital Association, 22 percent of angels are female.

Read more about how more female founders are going from raising cash to backing other startups as angel investors.

Photo screenshot of ThirdLove's founders.

Saturday, November 24, 2018

Joy to Your World from Escape From Corporate America

©2018 Laurel J. Delaney.  All rights reserved.
"This is my wish for you: peace of mind, prosperity through the year, happiness that multiplies, health for you and yours, fun around every corner, energy to chase your dreams, joy to fill your holidays!” -- D.M. Dellinger

Saturday, November 17, 2018

Why You Should Start a Business in 2019 No Matter What

Starting a business isn't easy and it isn't a decision you should jump into blindly. You'll need savings and a solid plan to make your dream a sound reality. But if you're prepared financially and logistically, there's a good chance you'll wind up more than satisfied with your choice.

The article below provides you with 6 reasons to move forward.
  1. You get to call the shots
  2. You can control your income
  3. You can pursue your passion
  4. You can set your own schedule
  5. You can make a difference
  6. You can shape your destiny (mine)
Read the entire on why you should start a business in 2019.

Saturday, November 10, 2018

State of Women: The Bad, the Ugly, and the Good

Below is a snapshot of a big and complex story on women’s rights and the women’s movement.
It doesn’t come close to capturing the full breadth of women’s experiences, challenges, or achievements this year—no summary could. But no matter how closely you follow the news or how much you already know about women’s progress, there’s research in here that will surprise you.
The presentation (snapshot) is fashioned into three categories, the:
  1. Bad
  2. Ugly
  3. Good
Here's to facing harsh truths and ending with hope in our hearts.

Saturday, November 03, 2018

How SHE Got it Right

According to the latest State of Women-owned Businesses report from American Express, four in 10 businesses in the U.S. are now majority-owned, operated and controlled by women.

Last year alone, 1,821 new women-owned businesses opened in the U.S. each day.

How can women entrepreneurs make sure their company goes the extra mile to become successful?

Below is advice from a handful of women business owners.
  1. Take a step-by-step approach
  2. Don't sell yourself short
  3. Learn to embrace rejection
  4. Give back to get back
  5. Learn from your team
  6. Create a culture of solution seekers
  7. Keep the end goal in mind
  8. Find a role where you own a P&L
Read the entire article about how these women business owners got it right.

Saturday, October 27, 2018

A National Conversation on Board Diversity in Chicago 11/15

Where can you find all of the following individuals -- 4 CEOs and 40 corporate board directors -- in one place at one time?  At the 2020 Women on Boards Chicago 7th Annual National Conversation on Board Diversity, November 15, 2018, 4:30 PM-8:30PM (Central time), The Mid-America Club, Aon Building, Chicago, Illinois.
  • Anne Pramaggiore, CEO, Exelon Utilities; Board Director: Motorola Solutions, Inc., Babcock and Wilcox Enterprises—both NYSE-listed companies; Chair, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago
  • John W. Rogers, Jr., Founder, Chair, & CEO of Ariel Investments; Board Director: Exelon, McDonald’s, NY Times—all NYSE-listed public companies
  • Ilene Gordon, retired CEO, Ingredion; Board Director: International Paper, Lockheed Martin—both NYSE-listed public companies
  • Jennifer Sherman, CEO & Board Director, Federal Signal—NYSE-listed public company & Board Director, Franklin Electric—NASDAQ-listed public company
  • Donna Zarcone, CEO, The Economic Club; Board Director: CDW—NASDAQ-listed public company, CIGNA—NYSE-listed public company, & The Duchossois Group—private company
  • Kapila Anand, retired KPMG Partner; Board Director: ESH Hospitality—NASDAQ-listed public company & Extended Stay America, Omega Healthcare Investors, & Elanco Animal Health—all 3 NYSE-listed public companies
  • Sally Blount, former Northwestern University Kellogg dean; Board Director: Abbott & Ulta Beauty—2 NYSE-listed public companies
  • Adela Cepeda, Managing Director, PFM Financial Advisors; Board Director, BMO Financial Corp, a Bank of Montreal—TSX/NYSE-listed public company—& The Mercer Funds, The UBS Funds—2 private mutual funds
  • Carol Ward, Corporate Secretary to the Board, Mondel─ôz International—SWX/NASDAQ-listed public company
  • Rodrigo Garcia, Chief Investment Officer & CFO, Illinois State Treasury; Board Director: The Thirty Percent Coalition
  • Diane Aigotti, CFO, Ryan Specialty Group; Board Director: GATX—NYSE-listed public company
  • Holly Bailey, President, Howell Paving; Board Director, First Mid Illinois Bancshares—NASDAQ-listed public company
  • Dan Bayston, Managing Director, Cognient Advisors; Board Director: Prime Line Products, Besser Company, KLJ Solutions—all 3 private ESOP companies
  • Carrie Bienkowski, CMO, Peapod; Board Director: ConforMIS—NASDAQ-listed public company
  • Barbara Bowles, retired Chair, Kenwood Group; Board Director: WEC Energy Group—NYSE-listed public company
  • Donald Carley, SVP, GC, Chief Compliance Officer, & Corporate Secretary to the Board, Horace Mann—NYSE-listed public company
  • Lynn Clarke, former CEO for 3 companies; Board Director & Chair: Nielsen-Massey Flavorings & Talalay Global Mattresses & Board Director: Abarta Coca-Cola & Top Notch Distributors—all 4 private companies
  • Candace Duncan, retired Partner, KPMG; Board Director: Discover Financial Services—NYSE-listed public company, FTD Companies—NASDAQ-listed public company, & Teleflex—NYSE-listed public company
  • Vicki Dudley, CFO & Treasurer, TTX—largest NA railcars owner; Board Director: Seacube Container Leasing (owned by Ontario Teachers Pension Plan); Raffles Insurance & EPIC—2 captive insurance firms—all 3 private companies
  • Venita Fields, Partner, Pelham S2K Managers; Board Director: Derry Enterprises, LifeSpace Communities, VSA Partners—all 3 private companies
  • Jill Goodman, Managing Director, Foros; Board Director: CBOE Global Markets—NASDAQ-listed public company
  • Judy Greffin, former EVP & CIO, Board Director:  Allstate; Board Director: Associated Bank—NYSE-listed public company
  • Gail Durham Hasbrouck, retired SVP, GC, & Corporate Secretary, Advocate Health Care; Board Director: Advocate Health Care—largest IL health system
  • Linda Jojo, Chief Digital Officer & EVP, Technology, United Airlines; Board Director: Exelon—NYSE-listed public company
  • Barbara Klein, Board Director: Cabot Microelectronics—NASDAQ-listed public company & Ingredion—NYSE-listed public company
  • Delores Kunda, former CEO, Leo Burnett Puerto Rico; Board Director, Finish Line—NASDAQ-listed public company recently sold!
  • Alice Peterson, COO, Curadux; Board Director: SP Plus—NASDAQ-listed public company & Williams Partners—NYSE-listed public company
  • Cynthia Plouche, Mutual Fund Director: Northern Institutional Funds/Northern Funds & Barings Funds—all private mutual fund companies
  • Donna Smith/Wanda Baum/Linda Lin/Anna Maria Viti-Welch; Board Directors: First Bank of Highland Park—one of 5 largest privately held Chicago banks, Crain’s named 2018 Top 100 Best Places to Work in Chicago
  • Dany St-Pierre, one of World’s Top 100 Most Influential Women in Wind Energy; Board Director: Boralex—TSX-listed public company
  • Jane Warner, retired EVP, Illinois Tool Works (ITW); Board Director: Brunswick, Regal Beloit, & Tenneco—all 3 NYSE-listed public companies
  • Michelle Warner, GC and Corporate Secretary to the Board, USG Corporation—NYSE-listed public company
  • Mary Westerhold, CFO, Madison Communications; Board Director: First Mid Illinois Bancshares—NYSE-listed public company
  • James Wooten, Jr, Board Director:  Hyatt Hotels—NYSE-listed public company & Morae Global Corporation—a private company.
2020 Women on Boards is a national campaign to increase the percentage of women on U.S. company boards to 20 percent or greater by the year of 2020.  Check out their progress and register your support at

To learn more and to register for the November 15th program, visit here.  Better get on it fast for tickets are selling like hotcakes.