Save June 9 & Celebrate Women’s History Month

  • Save the Date for Annual Member Meeting
  • Celebrate Women’s History Month with Women Businesses!
  • Centro RFP due March 13, 2015. SoCal members can participate in a project to reduce TA costs by 80%. For questions, contact Shufina English.
  • The Goodies – This week’s highlight includes two professional development opportunities: 1) Aspen’s Franklin Project Ambassadors Program, a year-long leadership development program. 2) The Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco and Bay Area LISC sponsor three days of interactive and in-depth training about strategies for building a better business district. Scroll down for deadlines and more information.

Save the Date for Annual Member Meeting

Mark your calendars for June 9, 2015! We’ll be heading to Sacramento for our Annual Member Meeting. A taste of what’s on tap:

  • This year we have an active bill (SB 197), so will need your help to educate your legislators.
  • We will be championing women’s entrepreneurship in the Capitol.
  • Michael Shuman will be joining us in the afternoon. He’s the author of Local Dollars, Local Sense, but will have a book hot-off-the-presses that will help make the case for investment in the microbusiness sector. For us, it’s a game changer.
  • Our 5th Faces of Entrepreneurship Awards.

Of course, we’ve got a few other surprises up our sleeve. Stay tuned!

Celebrate Women’s History Month

Happy Women’s History Month! We’re kicking off March with a tribute to women’s business ownership. All month, we want to highlight your stories about successful women business owners, especially ones about successful women veteran businesses and women-owned businesses in agriculture. If you’ve got a great story about any client, we’re all ears. Please email or call 415.992.4484.

In the meanwhile, check out the story of Kelly Carlisle, a former Operations Specialist in the U.S. Navy and Navy Reserve. She founded Acta Non Verba in 2010 to help youth in East Oakland embrace urban farming and healthy foods. We’ve posted a host of stories on women business owners on our website.

Read Claudia’s recent blog about scaling up business assistance services to women-owned microbusiness – “Boosting Women-Owned Businesses Will Boost the Economy.” It’s gotten some attention, even spurring an interview with an NBC reporter (yes, we’ll let you know when it will air).

Finally, join Urban Solutions Executive Director Steve McCoy-Thompson on March 10, 2015, 8:30-8:45 on KPOO where he talks about women-owned businesses.

The Goodies

New opportunities for training, conference information, funding, scholarships, and other information that have crossed our desks since the last Must Know. I have posted a running tab of current Industry Goodies on the CAMEO website that lists items that were in past emails. Check it out to make sure you’re not missing anything, like grants whose deadlines are still alive!

Robert Reich has a P.S. to our ‘sharing economy‘ post from last week. He calls it the ‘share the scraps economy.’ He refers to workers, while we see people as business owners. Good food for thought is to how can the micro sector make sure that it is a sharing economy and not a share for scraps.

Take Action: Support SB 197. The bill would allow CAMEO’s microlenders to pay referral fees to consultants, non-profits (e.g. TA providers), and others who refer successful loans. It also will give your clients more information about affordable lending products. Download the SB 197 Support Letter Template and put it on your letterhead. Edit appropriately, then email to:, and cc and me! For more information check out the Must Know from February 19, 2015.

Member Kudos: Congrats to Opportunity Fund who received $3 million from Mark Leslie and his family. In partnership with Opportunity Fund, Mark, Debra, and their family have established the Leslie Fund for Entrepreneurship. Their generous pledge will help thousands of underserved entrepreneurs build sustainable businesses and create jobs.

Small Business California’s Survey: SBC received 676 responses to their annual survey of small businesses. This year small businesses seem to be more optimistic than the last few years, and more are indicating their receipts have gone up over the last year. The top six issues were the same as last year: economy, health costs and access, public education quality, regulations, infrastructure and reducing state taxes. For the first time there was more support for public financing of health insurance (46.53%) than opposition (37.16%).

Free Webinar: Last November, the Center for an Urban Future in New York City published “Small Business Success” – a report on the “secret sauce” for growing small businesses into medium-sized or large businesses. Join AEO on Wednesday, March 11, 2015 at 11:00am PT // 2:00pm ET for a webinar to discuss the report and its findings. Call-in toll number (US/Canada): 1-650-479-3208
Access code: 662 934 147.

SBA Funding Webinar: The SBA is hosting an upcoming best practices webinars for microlenders on March 12 at 11:00am PT / 2:00pm ETBest Practices for Microloan TA Grant Applications. The meeting information is – Meeting number 1-888-858-2144, Access Code: 2390263, login at Learn about other webinars throughout the year on microlending and the community advantage program.

For Your Clients: Comcast Business believes that smart, strategic use of technology can catapult a business to an entirely new level whether it be Connecting in innovative ways with customers, managing back office operations more efficiently, or creating a whole new line of business enabled by technology. They’re holding a contest to learn what your business would do with a $30,000 investment in technology. Contest winners will be able to invest the money and implement their ideas. The Deadline is March 15, 2015.

Economic Development Training: The Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco in partnership with Bay Area LISC invite you to join other community and economic development professionals for one, two or three days of interactive and in-depth training about strategies for building a better business district. The case study based training is relevant to practitioners from rural or urban settings who are looking to build expertise in commercial corridor development. The training is from March 18-March 20, 2015 at the David Brower Center in Berkeley and is open to all.

Professional Development Opportunity: Aspen launches their Franklin Project Ambassadors Program, a year-long leadership development program and local engagement strategy that will catalyze support for the big idea in communities across the country. The California regions they are recruiting during March include: Central Valley, Los Angeles, San Diego, and San Jose (Silicon Valley). Applications are due March 23, 2015.

For Your Clients: The U.S. Small Business Administration Los Angeles District Office has launched the registration for its 2015 Emerging Leaders executive-level training series for Los Angeles, Ventura and Santa Barbara counties. Nationally, the Emerging Leaders Program has trained more than 2,400 promising small business owners in underserved communities, and its impact continues to expand in helping small businesses to grow and create jobs. Participant recruitment begins in February through SBA’s local district offices and classes typically begin in April. Learn more.

Impact Data: Do you need credible data on your organization’s micro and small business outcomes to support fundraising and program management? Aspen’s FIELD is signing up programs now to join the EntrepreneurTracker client outcomes survey process in 2015. Check out the one-page summary to get a visual idea of what EntrepreneurTracker is all about. Sign up ends April 3, 2015. To learn more about EntrepreneurTracker and how your organization can participate in 2015, please contact Tamra Thetford,

Economic Outlook: Forecast LA is an annual event that combines an economic forecast for the U.S., California, and Los Angeles, with original survey research to produce a comprehensive look at what lies ahead for Los Angeles County and its nearly 10 million residents. CAMEO members receive a $25 discount off the $175 ticket (use link). The event takes place on April 7, 2015, 8:00-12noon at Gersten Pavilion, 1 LMU Drive, Los Angeles, CA 90045.

Funding Opportunity: The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families (ACF), Office of Community Services (OCS) today announced the next funding round for CED and CED-HFFI grants. These are extremely competitive grants that supports social enterprises that create jobs for low-income individuals and require a considerable amount of pre-planning. Friedman Associates will partner with a limited number of CDCs and CDFIs to write successful proposals. The grant deadlines are April 24, 2015.

Business Conference: NAWBO California ‘Propel Your Business’ Conference takes place on April 27-28, 2015 at the Sheraton Grand Sacramento Hotel. The theme is Think Bigger- Grow Strategically-Network Statewide.