Twenty-Five Washington, D.C. Area Entrepreneurs to Receive 2013 Women of Color Award

Oct 22, 2013, 16:29 ET from Women Presidents' Organization

-- Hosted by 100 Black Men of Greater Washington, D.C. And Women Presidents' Organization --

WASHINGTON, Oct. 22, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Twenty-five women entrepreneurs from the Washington, D.C. area were selected to receive the 2013 Women of Color Award from 100 Black Men of Greater Washington, D.C. Presented in partnership with the Women Presidents' Organization, the awards are based upon the success of these distinguished business leaders and for service to the community. The awards reception, which will be hosted by the 100 Black Men of Greater Washington, D.C. and sponsored by IBM and UPS, will be held on Friday, October 25th at the City Club of Washington.


Privately held women-owned and –led firms provided a net increase in employment opportunities that have significantly strengthened the U.S. economy. All award recipients were identified by the 100 Black Men of Greater Washington, D.C., in conjunction with the WPO Chapter Chairs in Washington, D.C., Northern Virginia and Baltimore. To be qualified for this honor and as a WPO member, businesses are required to be owned or led by a woman and have reached annual revenues of at least $2 million (or $1 million for a service-based business).

"As an organization we are known for our mentorship of young men, but in reality we come in contact with just as many young women with dreams and high aspirations. It is important for us that we can point to high achieving women and put them in front of our youth so they may engage and model their behavior," said Michael E. Melton, President 100 Black Men of Greater Washington, D.C. 

"We are very proud to continue our ongoing partnership with 100 Black Men of America to recognize an influential group of women business owners. Each one is at the peak of her professional and personal achievement, demonstrating outstanding leadership qualities running multi-million dollar businesses that promote economic security while also lending their time and energy to local community projects.  They are truly role models for women and girls everywhere," said Marsha Firestone Ph.D., President and Founder of the Women Presidents' Organization.

"IBM is proud to sponsor the Women Presidents' Organization (WPO) Women of Color Receptions for the second year.  I applaud WPO and the 100 Black Men of America for creating and continuing these events to recognize outstanding women of color business owners and their success," said Denise Evans, IBM Vice President, Market Development. She added "According to the Census Bureau's Survey of Business Owners, the 157,000 women of color owned employer companies generated more than $122 billion in 2007 revenues and Latino owned companies are the fastest growing, in number, of all businesses.  IBM Market Development wants to ensure women of color business owners understand how to leverage information technology to accelerate the growth and success of their businesses.  We congratulate the honorees of this event!"

The following women will be honored:

  • Tracy Balazs, RN, Federal Staffing Resources
  • Michelle Bell, PHR, 1st Choice Staffing Agency
  • La Shaun J. Berrien, Ph.D., The Berrien Caldwell Group, LLC
  • Kimberly Brown, Ph.D. Amethyst Technologies
  • Maxine Clark, DDS, Maxine V. Clark DDS, PA
  • Jennifer Collins, CMP, The Event Planning Group
  • Valarie Dock, Bolana Enterprise Inc.
  • Brenda Doles, RN, HealthCare Resolution Services Inc.
  • Jean Drummond, HCD International
  • Erika Flora, Beyond20
  • Twyla Garrett Ph.D., Investment Management Enterprise Inc.
  • Amsale Geletu, PMS Parking Inc.
  • Sonja Hines, H&S Resources Corporation
  • Barbara Hutchinson, MD, Chesapeake Cardiac Care PA
  • Sheila Lee, Sheila Lee & Associates
  • Cidalia Luis, M. Luis Construction Co., Inc.
  • Natalie Luis, M. Luis Construction Co., Inc.
  • Angela Marshall, MD, Comprehensive Women's Health
  • Gina Merritt, Northern Real Estate Urban Ventures, LLC
  • Necole Parker, The ELOCEN Group, LLC
  • Shina Parker, Integrity Title & Excrow Company
  • Zerita Ross, Ross Insurance Agency
  • Nakia Stith, Top of the Clock, Inc.
  • Lorena Streb, Streb Enterprises
  • Denise Van Wyngaardt, Indigo IT, LLC

"Since 2007, UPS has partnered with the WPO to help women entrepreneurs realize their dreams.  We salute the distinguished honorees and stand ready to support the logistical needs of women-owned businesses globally," said Nicole Clifton, Vice President, UPS Public Affairs.

Women-led businesses have made significant contributions to the nation's economy*:

  • Over the past decade, the growth in the number of women-owned firms with $10 million or more in revenues has increased by 56.6%, a rate faster than the rate of growth of all $10M+ firms and nearly twice (+98%) the rate of growth of all women-owned firms.
  • The number of $1M+ women-owned firms has grown by 30.7%, just over the 28.9% increase in all million-dollar firms. But, at the highest end of sales achievement, the number of $10M+ women-owned firms has grown by 56.6% -- fully 47% higher than the 38.4% increase among all $10M+ firms.
  • The industries home to the greatest share of million-dollar firms that exceed the $10M threshold include: wholesale trade (20%), finance/insurance (12%), transportation/warehousing (11%), and arts/entertainment/recreation (10%).

*Source: State of Women-Owned Businesses Report, published by American Express OPEN, March 2012

About WPO
The WPO is the ultimate affiliation for successful women entrepreneurs worldwide, connecting women who lead and own multi-million dollar companies. In monthly meetings across the world, women from diverse industries invest time and energy in themselves and their businesses to drive their corporations to the next level. Local WPO chapters are coordinated by a professional facilitator and meet monthly to share business expertise and experience in a confidential setting. For more information, call 212-688-4114 or visit

About the 100 Black Men of Greater Washington, D.C. Inc.
100 Black Men of Greater Washington, D.C., Inc. is a 501(c3) organization founded in 1995 by an alliance of African-American men, dedicated to giving time to enhance the lives of young people in the Washington Metropolitan Area. 100BMOGW, Inc. is an affiliate of the 100 Black Men of America (100 BMOA). The 100 BMOA is devoted to improving the quality of life for African-Americans - particular young men - through the "Four for the Future" program. This consists of Mentoring, Education, Health & Wellness and Economic Development. The 100 BMOA have more than 10,000 members and 116 chapters in the US, England and Virgin Islands. Please visit our website at

SOURCE Women Presidents' Organization