Dionne McCray is the founder, designer, and owner of Iva Jewell by Dionne. She makes accessories for the daring, brave, and beautiful woman who likes bright colors and big prints. “I’ve always been happiest when I am making things,” she said.
In 2010, the dream of Reem’s was born at the doorstep of a street corner bakery in Beirut, Lebanon. Founder Reem Assil says, “The scent of za’atar, yeasted bread, and sweet orange blossom syrup right out of the oven and the sounds of laughter and chatter in Arabic all around me conjured up memories of my childhood and my yearning to create home and community in the US.”
Pioneering music technology company ElectroSpit makes the world’s only lightweight, fully-portable, tubeless talkbox. This technology allows musicians to play various instrumental sounds and voices through their mouth. This creates a unique ability to “sing” with limitless range and creativity. Every device is hand-crafted at the company’s headquarters in West Oakland, California, a historically Black community.
Bernadette Aguirre is a first-generation Filipina American from San Francisco, California. She is the founder of INA Botanicals & Tea, an herbal and specialty tea company that is dedicated to supporting personal growth and wellness.
FiestaBowls, located between 18th and 19th streets, is an example of the tenacity of the Mission’s business community. In challenging times, this community found ways to carry on in the pursuit of their dreams. This year, the Mexican snack business was one of the initial recipients of a loan from the Racial Equity Lens (REL) fund.
After a trip to Ethiopia to visit family, Dagne Tedla brought a leather messenger bag as a gift for his daughter Xiomara. After countless compliments and inquiries from friends and strangers about the bag, Dagne suggested the two should start a business. Initially, Xiomara resisted as she was focusing on her corporate career and busy personal life. Soon after, friends and co-workers asked when Dagne was heading back to Ethiopia and asked if they could place pre-orders!
Tana Harris had been in the construction industry for nearly 20 years when she started thinking about starting her own business. In 2013, she attended Renaissance Entrepreneurship Center’s introductory business class. What started as just an idea came to fruition as Harris Hoisting, the only African-American woman owned hoisting company in the city of San Francisco.
Wanda Blake’s cooking apprenticeship started in her mother’s kitchen. It then continued in the kitchens of great aunts, aunties, grandmas, and cousins. In 1981, Wanda attended City College of San Francisco to study hotel and restaurant management. In 2015, she launched Wanda’s Cooking.
In 2010, Monica Martinez had a vision for a highly sustainable, insect-based snack company. She wanted to honor the indigenous, pre-Hispanic culinary traditions of Mexico. Over the course of the next decade, Monica got the company off the ground mostly with her own funds. She worked as the sole employee of Don Bugito.
A leading importer of the finest Italian Ceramics from Italy, Biordi Art Imports offers hand-painted dinnerware and home décor from artisans in Italy. Biordi Art Imports has been a historical treasure in San Francisco’s North Beach for 75 years.