A consortium of Oklahoma City entrepreneurial groups and leaders will host the fourth annual Minority Enterprise Development Week, titled “Open for Business: The Economy Starts with Us,” Oct. 10-15.
The weeklong series of events are organized to spotlight, celebrate and strengthen businesses owned by people of color, women, 2SLGBTQ+, disabled, veteran and other minority entrepreneurs. The week will feature networking events, an awards ceremony and educational programming that will include topics of technology, marketing, legality, supplier diversity, access to capital, finance, e-commerce, cryptocurrency, cannabis industry and other programming organized with community partners.
Minority Enterprise Development Week is a national initiative by the U.S. Department of Commerce and the Minority Business Development Agency and was first recognized by President Ronald Reagan in 1983. Oklahoma City has hosted the annual event since 2019 when Mayor David Holt proclaimed the occasion. Oklahoma City Minority Enterprise Development Week will be a continuation in line with President Joseph Biden’s anticipated proclamation of Sept. 18-24 as “National Minority Enterprise Week.”
The awards ceremony will present $1,000 awards to four central Oklahoma minority entrepreneurs in distinguished leadership, innovative leadership, selfless leadership and charismatic leadership.
Nominations for these awards are open to the public for submission through Friday, Sept. 23. The award recipients will be honored Monday, Oct. 10 at the opening and award ceremonies for OKC Minority Enterprise Development Week. A calendar of events, submission for award nominations and more information can be found at the OKC Minority Enterprise Development Week’s website.
Oklahoma City Minority Enterprise Development Week has been hosted since 2019 with Progress OKC, Inc., a local community development corporation, as its leading partner. Organizing community partners include The Verge OKC, Oklahoma City Black Chamber of Commerce, U.S. Small Business Development Center, Mass Mutual, MyAddo, WeThePeople Consulting, Asian District Cultural Association, Calle Dos Cinco in Historic Capitol Hill, Oklahoma City Innovation District, Northeast Oklahoma City Renaissance, and OKC Latina. Presenting Sponsors are Arnall Family Foundation and First Security Bank. Other sponsors include WeThePeople Consulting, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, the Oklahoma City Black Chamber of Commerce, Metro Technology Centers, Yelp, The Verge OKC, Nominee Design, the Greater Oklahoma City Chamber of Commerce, and Cortado Ventures.