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Latinas in Business CEO appointed by NJEDA to help NJ Economic Recovery

Latinas in Business founder and CEO Susana G Baumann has been appointed to the Entrepreneur Zone Working Group by the New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA), making her an active leader in the NJ economic recovery that is expected to take place in the next months. 

Susana G Baumann

Susana G Baumann, President and CEO, Latinas in Business Inc.

This group of policy experts will evaluate the viability of reducing unemployment in marginalized communities by establishing “Entrepreneur Zones” within existing Opportunity Zones.

“As we recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, it is crucial that we redouble our efforts to achieve Governor Phil Murphy’s vision for a stronger and fairer New Jersey economy,” said NJEDA Chief Executive Officer Tim Sullivan. “Helping innovative companies launch and grow in New Jersey is a critical driver of sustainable, equitable economic growth. It is especially important to support the growth of companies in historically marginalized communities where job opportunities and access to capital are hard to come by. Entrepreneur Zones have the potential to achieve both of these goals, and the Working Group will provide valuable recommendations on how this policy could work in New Jersey.”

The Act requires the Working Group to consider whether the establishment of entrepreneur zones in which the State provides tax incentives, regulation relief, and financial support to local entrepreneurs is the most effective way to create jobs in the State. 

Susana G Baumann called to serve by NJEDA

On behalf of her experience working with Latina entrepreneurs and Latina-owned businesses, through which she has empowered them and shown the path for entrepreneurship, Susana was called to serve her fellow citizens. Susana will serve without compensation but will be considered a Special State Officer.

As an award-winning multicultural communications expert and strategist, public speaker, journalist, published author, and small business advocate, Susana has worked extensively with communities, organizations, and government agencies both locally and nationwide. 

Previously, Susana has been named “Journalist of the Year” by the Statewide Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of New Jersey for her service and advocacy to Latino small businesses; a “Latina of Influence” by Hispanic Lifestyle Magazine; and in 2018, received the Red Shoe Movement “Leaders Who Walk the Talk” Award in NYC, among other recognitions. 

influencer, Susana G Baumann

Susana G Baumann 2017 Latina of Influence by Hispanic Lifestyle Magazine.

In 2019, she was invited to become a SheSource Expert at Women’s Media Center (WMC), a progressive, nonpartisan, nonprofit organization founded by Jane Fonda, Robin Morgan, and Gloria Steinem to raise the visibility, viability, and decision-making power of women and girls in media, thereby ensuring that their stories get told and their voices are heard.

In 2020, Susana was distinguished from a pool of candidates from Encore.org, and assigned an Encore Fellowship to work with United Way of Central Jersey in New Business Development and Branding Strategy. She is also an active member of the NJ-AARP Speaker’s Bureau. 

Susana has been featured in several national media outlets including Abasto Magazine, Huffington Post, VOXXI News, Negocios Now, Americano Newspaper, CBS, FOX, Yahoo Finance News, and has been a guest to the Joe Torres TV program Tiempo at WABCTV, and several times to Contigo en la Comunidad at Univision 41 NYC.

Latina SmallBiz Expo Pitch Competition winners, Susana G Baumann

At Univision 41 Contigo en la Comunidad (L to R) Katiria Soto, Susana G Baumann, Mary Dressendofer, Tania Molina

Her extensive experience as a Latina leader and business entrepreneur has positioned her as the perfect candidate to serve on the Working Group Entrepreneur Zone, where she will continue to help better the lives of entrepreneurs in the state of New Jersey. 

You might be interested: National Conversation with Latina Leaders to address Latina Small Business recovery in Post-Covid19 economic crisis

Other relevant NJ leaders to serve in the Entrepreneur Zone Working Group

The Entrepreneur Zone Working Group will evaluate the viability of the Entrepreneur Zone concept and consider options for implementing the policy in New Jersey. The members of Entrepreneur Zone Working Group are:

  • Dr. Dale G. Caldwell – Chair of the Working Group; Professor, Farleigh Dickinson University
  • Susana G. Baumann – President and CEO, Latinas in Business Inc.
  • Kelly Brozyna – Chief Executive Officer and State Director, America’s Small Business Development Centers – New Jersey
  • Saki Dodelson – CEO and Founder, Beable
  • John Harmon – President and CEO, African American Chamber of Commerce of New Jersey
  • Jill Johnson – CEO, Institute for Entrepreneurial Leadership
  • Kevin Johnson – K Johnson Enterprises, LLC.
  • Brandon McKoy – President, New Jersey Policy Perspective
  • Carlos A. Medina, Esq. – President, Statewide Hispanic Chamber of Commerce
  • Courtenay Mercer –Principal, Mercer Planning Associates; Executive Director, Downtown NJ
  • Damon Pennington – President & CEO, ATS Group
  • Indy Samra – Co-Founder, Punjabi Chamber of Commerce
  • Tom Szaky – Founder and CEO, TerraCycle

In addition to considering the establishment of entrepreneur zones throughout the state of New Jersey, the Working Group is also charged with identifying census tracts within the State that are suitable for designation as an entrepreneur zone.

It’s a great honor for Latinas in Business to have Susana in such a position where she is called once more to serve the New Jersey community and help better the quality of life for New Jerseyeans, as she has been doing for many years. 

About NJEDA 

NJEDA, Working Group

The New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA) grows the state’s economy and increases equitable access to opportunity by supporting high-quality job creation, catalyzing investment, and fostering vibrant, inclusive community development.  NJEDA works in partnership with a diverse range of stakeholders to implement programs and initiatives that improve quality of life, enhance economic vitality, and strengthen New Jersey’s long-term economic competitiveness. Their vision is to make New Jersey a national model for sustainable and equitable economic growth by investing in communities, fostering innovation, and supporting industries with high quality-jobs in the State.

Latinas in Business partners with Rutgers’ Entrepreneurship Pioneers Initiative (EPI) Program

Jasmine Cordero is the director of Rutgers’ award-winning Entrepreneurship Pioneers Initiative (EPI) Program where she manages the 9-month training program focused on helping entrepreneurs in NJ grow their businesses and attain resources, financial coaching, peer-mentoring, and networking opportunities. 

Entrepreneurship Pioneers Initiative

Apply today! Deadline March 31.

The Entrepreneurship Pioneers Initiative (EPI) offered by Rutgers University’s Center for Urban Entrepreneurship & Economic Development (CUEED) is an exclusive program that has helped countless entrepreneurs grow and improve their businesses for over 13 years. 

Now, Latinas in Business is becoming Strategic Partners with Rutgers’ EPI program to bring our Members more support and resources and help them get their businesses to the next level. Latina in Business Members will receive an exclusive discount on the program, paying only $300 instead of $550. 

Additionally, Rutgers will be sponsoring 3 scholarships for Latina in Business Members each year. 

“We are grateful and excited that Rutgers EPI program has partnered with Latinas in Business to give access to better knowledge, support and resources to our members. Latina entrepreneurs are a hard-working community that can use all the help they can get,” said Latinas in Business President and CEO, Susana G Baumann. 

Susana G Baumann with 2019 Latinas in Business Pitch Competition winners.

How the EPI Program will help you grow your business

Speaking with Jasmine, she explains what the EPI Program does, what participants can expect and gain from the program, and how to apply. 

“The EPI is an award-winning program and has won several national and international awards for its innovative curriculum and aiding economic development. The goal is to help entrepreneurs have thriving, sustainable and profitable businesses.

Participants receive intensive business training, individual business and financial coaching, peer mentoring, networking opportunities and mentoring over a 9-month period to help them grow and improve their businesses. The program also helps participants develop the skills and tools needed to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic and any other crisis that their business may face.” 

Jasmine Cordero as one of the judges at the 2019 Latinas in Business Pitch Competition.

What do small Business owners take away from the program? 

“Entrepreneurs leave the program with a road map, actionable, and measurable plan on how they are going to grow their business within the next three years. They also leave with an expanded network, a support network, and increased business knowledge to help them with their business growth.”

How do they graduate, and what are the requirements for graduation? 

To gain the full benefit of the EPI program, all participants must commit to:

    • Half a day training sessions biweekly on Fridays (Virtual via Zoom)
    • Additional hours (approximately 6-10) over the nine-month program for business development and financial coaching 
    • Developing and presenting a customized growth plan for your business
Entrepreneurship Pioneers Initiative

Visit https://www.business.rutgers.edu/cueed/epi for more information on the program and how to apply.

Is there funding involved?

Each participant will have their own business and financial coaches. As part of the coaching, the business coach will help them identify opportunities to grow and the financial coach will help them find funding. 

Who can apply? 

In order to be able to apply to the program you must be in business/fully operational for at least a minimum of 2 years and located in NJ.

Registration is now open for the 13th cohort. The deadline to apply is March 31. You can complete an application at https://www.business.rutgers.edu/cueed/epi.