02/21/21: WBE Tools, Resources, Information, Connections Bulletin February 22-26

We all know all this information is still unfolding daily so we urge you to review other resources so you can make the most informed decisions for your situation.


  • Join WBENC for a virtual event series in March celebrating Women’s History Month

    Registration is now open for a new virtual event series from WBENC — WBENC 2021 Focus on the Future. Join us for the entire month of March as we celebrate Women’s History Month and bring together our incredible network of women business owners and those who support them. 

    This event is laser-focused on providing meaningful education, resources, inspiration, connections, and conversation to help our network not only survive these uncertain times, but also grow and thrive. Attendees will have access to an exclusive virtual networking and event platform featuring the opportunity to network with corporations and women business owners, dozens of webinars and session recordings, inspirational celebratory events, industry-focused sessions, executive education, and more. 

    The virtual event series will take place each week throughout March. Explore the full event schedule, session details, and attendee pricing information at wbenc.org/march2021.To participate, register now!

    The Month will include:

    • Education | Breaking Down Barriers: Every Tuesday participate in educational sessions for WBEs and Corporate Members alike on breaking down barriers for success.
    • Inspiration & Innovation | WBE Growth & Resiliency: Every Wednesday, hear from inspirational and innovative WBEs in a weekly series of conversations, panel discussions, and WBE showcases.
    • Conversation | Real Talk: Every Thursday, participate in open but guided discussion on important topics facing women entrepreneurs and supplier diversity leaders.
    • Community & Celebration: Special celebratory events for our kickoff on March 1, International Women’s Day on March 8, and a grand finale on March 31. 


    What else to expect:

    • 31 days of exclusive content & resources
    • Networking opportunities with WBENC Corporate Members and WBEs
    • Executive education sessions with subject matter experts
    • Access to virtual networking and event platform
    • Exciting and inspirational celebratory events
    • Industry-focused spotlights and panel discussions
    • Important conversations on critical topics of importance to women business owners


    This event is laser-focused on providing meaningful education, resources, inspiration, connections, and conversation to help the WBENC network not only survive these uncertain times, but also grow and thrive. Attendees will have access to an exclusive virtual networking and event platform featuring the opportunity to network with corporations and women business owners, dozens of webinars and session recordings, inspirational celebratory events, industry-focused sessions, executive education, and more.


  • The U.S. Department of Education’s (ED) Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization (OSDBU) is hosting an online Simplified Acquisition Threshold (SAT) Conference on Wednesday, February 24, 2021 from 10:00AM-1:00PM EST. This event will cover information regarding ED purchases under the SAT ($250K). The event will also provide knowledge on how to engage with the program office designated points of contact. Please note that you must RSVP to join the webinar. Upon successful registration, you will receive an email containing a personalized access link. We look forward to your participation.To register for this event, please visit https://www.eventbrite.com/e/osdbu-simplified-acquisition-threshold-sat-conference-registration-139963728279If you experience difficulties or have questions, contact small.business@ed.gov.


  • Presidential Scholars Program Support Services | The U.S. Department of Education is seeking information on the availability and interest of qualified sources with the capability to meet the Office of Communications and Outreach’s (OCO) need for a support services contractor for its U.S. Presidential Scholars Program. See attachment (at link provided) for the draft performance work statement.OCO requires the services of a Contractor to provide technical and logistical support for the annual identification, evaluation, selection and recognition of 161 U.S. Presidential Scholars from an eligible candidate pool of roughly 5,600 graduating high school seniors from across the United States and abroad, as well as to enter data, develop reports, and provide application-related assistance to users of the program’s online application OLAS currently provided by WizeHive. The Contractor shall provide expert educational advice on current scholastic assessment practices, standardize testing and the methodology and procedures for identifying high-achieving students, and shall also support the Commission‘s annual selection and recognition process.
  • Registration is open for the 10th Annual Real Estate Women’s Online Conference 
    • March 1 – 5, 2021. Register today for the early bird rate of $75 (regular price $99). Use promo code: GREENPEARL75


Small Business Administration

  • SBA to Provide One Year 8(a) Program Extension to Participants Due to COVID-19. SBA’s 8(a) Business Development Program due to the challenges of COVID-19. The federal government’s goal is to award at least 5 percent of all federal contracting dollars to small disadvantaged businesses each year. Eligible 8(a) firms must meet the following qualifications:
      • Be a small business
      • Not have previously participated in the 8(a) program
      • Be at least 51 percent owned and controlled by U.S. citizens who are socially and economically disadvantaged
      • Have a personal net worth of $750K or less, adjusted gross income of $350K or less and $6 million or less in assets
      • Before you can participate in the 8(a) Business Development program, you must be certified
      • Demonstrate good character and potential to perform on contracts.
  • Mentor-Protégé program changes
    • As of November 16, 2020, the 8(a) Mentor-Protégé program and the All Small Mentor-Protégé program have merged into one program called SBA’s Mentor-Protégé Program (MPP). The ruling can be found in the Federal Register.
    • To stay up to date with the merger and associated changes, visit the new SBA’s Mentor-Protégé Program webpage.
  • 7(j) Management and Technical Assistance program. The 7(j) program provides assistance such as training, executive education, and one-on-one consulting in a wide range of business activities, including marketing, accounting, opportunity development and capture, contract management, compliance, and financial analysis. If you want to learn more about the 7(j) program or sign up for assistance, contact your local SBA district office. To receive assistance through the 7(j) program, a small business must be one or more of the following:
    • Located in areas of high unemployment or low-income;
    • Owned by low income-individuals; and
    • Certified as an 8(a) participant, HUBZone small business, and/or economically- disadvantaged women-owned small business.
  • Shuttered Venue Operators Grant Program. The Shuttered Venue Operators Grant (SVOG) program is Section 324 of the Economic Aid to Hard-Hit Small Businesses, Nonprofits and Venues Act (Economic Aid Act) signed into law on Dec. 27, 2020. Following are answers as of Feb. 5, 2021, to frequently asked questions about the program. These will bE updated as new information comes available and additional program details are finalized. Frequently Asked Question about SVOG.


  • You can apply for a First Draw PPP Loan until Wednesday, March 31, 2021. SBA is currently accepting First Draw PPP loan applications from participating lenders. Lender Match can help connect you with a lender. You can also view all lenders near you on a map. All new First Draw PPP Loans will have the same terms regardless of lender or borrower. If you wish to begin preparing your application, you can download the following PPP borrower application form to see the information that will be requested from you when you apply with a lender: PPP First Draw Borrower Application Form.


  • SBA Shares Resources for Black-Owned Businesses During National Black History Month By Victor Parker, Deputy Associate Administrator for the SBA Office of Field Operations
    This National Black History Month, we commemorate the 100th Anniversary of the destruction of Black Wall Street where hundreds of small business dreams were deferred in the town of Greenwood, Oklahoma. Today, Greenwood’s 1921 Commission and other small business leaders join forces to help this community rebuild and regain economic equity. SBA also celebrates the immeasurable contributions black business owners have made to entrepreneurship in this country. From key historical figures like Madame CJ Walker to well-known innovators like Oprah Winfrey, black business owners throughout history have shaped U.S. entrepreneurship and paved the way for today’s small business owners.


  • Looking for more information about the Targeted EIDL Advance? Earlier this week, the SBA added a new frequently asked questions which includes information about the application process, eligibility and program criteria. Learn More.


New York

  • NYC Restaurant Week To Go has been extended through Sunday, February 28, 2021. Registration is still open for restaurants who are interested in participating. The deadline for registration is Tuesday, February 2 at 5pm. Please click here for more details and to sign up. Diners may search for participating restaurants by visiting nycgo.com/restaurantweek.  



  • Thursday, February 25 | 11:00 am | Efficient Business: Serving Customers and Saving Energy
    & PPP

    During this webinar, Alex Sopelak, small business customer program administrator forEversource, will provide insight on how improvements to your heating and cooling system can impact customer comfort, safety and energy consumption. Together, we will also explore best practices and the resources available to help you pursue these and other energy efficiency opportunities in your business.

    • HVAC in Small Businesses
      • Identifying your system
      • Incentives for HVAC improvements
    • Best practices for minimizing the spread of COVID-19
      • IAQ Technology and Methodology
      • Employee & Customer Behavior
    • Case study/studies
    • Other ways to save energy
      • Virtual assessments
      • Financing options
    • Payment assistance
    • Residential HES



  • Maryland Washington Minority Companies Association Contracting Opportunities
  • To be eligible, a business must have between two and 25 employees, less than $7 million in annual revenue, a demonstrated need for support, a strong plan for moving forward, and be in good standing with the state of Maryland. For more information contact Allyson Black, Manager, State Affairs and Economic Development, BGE Allyson.Black@bge.com 410.269.5286


  • Wednesday, February 24th | DOs and DON’Ts for Measuring and Proving Your ROI A six-week series kicks off on Wednesday February 3 at 1:00pm CT. Ever wish you could read journalists’ minds? Are you making the best use of social media? Does ‘proving your ROI’ feel like an impossible task? If you’ve ever had these questions, this webinar series is for you. Reflect, reset and revisit some industry best practices that will keep you thriving. Let this be the year of more proactive and less reactive.


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Record number of contracts announced between WBENC certified Women Business Enterprises (WBEs) and Corporate Members, between WBEs and with the Public Sector; a fraction of contracting activity taking place within WPEO https://t.co/waBtLqBvE2 https://t.co/dTiugH70QZ
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Registration is OPEN for #WPEONYDC's first Virtual Breakthrough Breakfast! Visit our website for more information https://t.co/cxdqi6WEev
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@macysnews: Scale up and grow your business with Macy’s retail development program, The Workshop at Macy’s. Now accepting applications for its 2021 class, it was developed in 2011 to foster up-and-coming diverse and women-owned small retail businesses. https://t.co/0gwm5yvDpn https://t.co/xeGeT6UmtO
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Do you have a consumer products that is ready for retail? @WBENCLive and @Target will host a Women Owned in Retail session on 10/15/20 on12:30 PM! Learn more & register https://t.co/HE43bzw8DP #WPEO #womenowned #wbencnetwork
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@WBENCLive: 12 amazing NextGen #WomenEntrepreneurs will advance to the Live Pitch Competition on October 5, featuring $10K in grant awards! Check out the NextGen Pitch Intensive https://t.co/4lLvHHCkdL . #WBENC #NextGenWBE #WBENCnetwork #businesspitch #femalefounder #startup #femalefounders https://t.co/HIJgRTnlGD
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