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Nita Marchant 
SSN Small Business & Nonprofit Development Group (SBND) 
(773) 614-7619 


Friday December 6, 2013 from 9:00 AM to 7:00 PM CST

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Fine Arts Building, Curtiss Hall 
410 South Michigan
Chicago, IL 60605

Driving Directions 

SBND Sponsor/Partner Exhibits

SBND VIP Reception Exhibits 041612Space is limited, so register for your exhibit space today!

For more information, click the following link with no obligation.

SBND Sponsor & Partner Registration Link

awardees & Special guests

In alphabetical order by last name are expert panelist speakers and award honorees invited to attend the 2013 SBND Appreciation Awards Expo.

Lead Expert Panelist Moderator

Marc Lane

Marc J. Lane

Marc is a nationally recognized business and tax attorney and financial advisor who practices law at The Law Offices of Marc J. Lane, P.C. in Chicago.  Chairman of Illinois Task Force on Social Innovation, Entrepreneurship and Enterprise.

Twice a recipient of the Illinois State Bar Association's Lincoln Award, Marc, a “Leading Illinois Attorney” and “Illinois Super Lawyer,” has consistently earned an "AV Preeminent" rating in the Martindale-Hubbell Legal Directory, the highest ranking awarded. 

 Lead Panelist Presenters

Sakira Jackson

Sakira is a highly acclaimed keynote speaker, consultant and executive coach. She addresses thousands of men and women each year on the subjects of leadership, team dynamics, personal transformation and peak performance.

Her consulting and training firms, Brainpower Consulting and The Business Doctor has attracted clients from across the country. She is also the current Chief Operating Officer of Diversity MBA a member of the board of the Matteson Business Association.


Bral M. Spight

Throughout his career, Bral Spight has worked at the intersections of public, private, and civic interests to promote economic development.

Spight established a firm SIVIC Real Estate, L.L.C. in 2002 to pursue urban retail and mixed-use development projects in Chicago.  He is currently the CEO and founder of UrbanPonics LLC, a sustainable pesticide-free hydroponic produce grower that typically employs those with barriers to employment.  He is also Executive Director of Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Business Initiative, City Colleges of Chicago.

Vanessa Cabrera

Vanessa is Chief Creative Officer of Your Social Media Mentor, Inc.  She is also an Authorized Local Expert with Constant Contact.
As an energetic expert in email and social media marketing, she jams every seminar with countless useful tools, tips and advice in which attendees are able to implement immediately upon leaving an event.   She makes sure that the audience has action items to implement right away so that each event creates real value for the audience.


Expert Panelist Speakers:

  • Tony Blair, President, Chicago Quick Signs
  • Roger Koeppen, VP - Partner at Amata Office Centers, Broker at Amata Realty Group
  • Stacey Flint, Director of Enrollment Management, Spertus Institute for Jewish Learning and Leadership 
  • Dr. Denise Gates, Senior Consultant at Gates to Success Consulting Group (GSCG) 
  • Erika Harford, Assistant Director, Institute for Justice Clinic on Entrepreneurship, University of Chicago Law School
  • John Porter, Project Director, Information Now

Awardee Sponsors and Partners

  • Mark S. Allen, Chairman , National Black Wall Street Chicago
  • Dr. Karin B. Baird, PhD., Acting Director, Spertus Institute for Jewish Learning and Leadership, Master of Science in Nonprofit Management
  • Johnnie Blair, Founder, President & CEO, Bronzeville Chamber of Commerce
  • Naomi  Davis, President, Blacks In Green
  • Michael House, President (Retired), Chicago Defender
  • Frank Chalupa, President and Owner, Amata Office Center
  • Rochelle Crump, President, National Women Veterans United (NWVU)
  • Alan Jacobs, Area V.P. Workshop Chair, Score Chicago
  • Rev. Dr. L. Bernard Jakes, Senior Pastor/Teacher, West Point Missionary Baptist Church
  • Edmon Lighthall, Director, Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce
  • Debbie Meyers-Martin, Program Coordinator/Community, Affairs Marketing Specialist, Office of Illinois State Treasurer
  • Barry Moltz, President, Shafran Moltz Group
  • Dante L. Mosely, V.P., Business Development Branch Manager, Hyde Park Bank
  • Stephanie D. Neely, Treasurer, City of Chicago
  • Yvonne Orr, Chief Professional Officer, South-Southwest Suburban Region United Way
  • Annie Russell, Chairperson, West Point Missionary Baptist Church
  • Erica Sevilla, Multicultural Marketing Manager, Verizon Wireless
  • Mary L. Swopes, President/CEO, Mahogany Scholarship Heritage Foundation

Member & Innovation Achievement Awardees

  • Shirley Frierson, Advocates for Veterans & Supportive Housing
  • Ruby Gray, SBND Advisory Council
  • Olawale Idreez and John Smith, Africa-US Today Magazine
  • Mary Kaminski, SBND Advisory Council
  • Virgil Mathis, Inventor/Owner, Elevison-Television
  • John Porter, Innovation Now
  • Eric January, Conduit Investments, Inc.
  • Melody Walson, President , M.W.O G. Outreach, (NFP)
  • Board of Directors, Legacy Connections

2013 SBND Appreciation Awards Expo

SBND Achievement Gala Group Shot At the 2013 SBND Appreciation Awards Expo, SBND will publically recognize elected officials, small businesses and nonprofit organizations who invest in U.S. Veteran and Community Innovations that help create jobs, tax revenues and new legal enterprises in Illinois, Cook County and Chicago  neighborhoods. 

A Platform of Benefits

  • Meet prospect sponsors, investors, bankers, consumers and contractors who are interested in empowering your enterprise for success
  • Free $25 Dollar Gift Certificates for Registered Guests (Limited Offer)
  • Free guest passes for first 50 veteran business owners and business college students

This exclusive awards expo event will be held on Friday, December 6, 2013 at the historic Fine Arts Building, Curtiss Hall, 410 South Michigan, Chicago, IL 60605.  Affordable parking rates for early bird registrants at ABM Parking Services, 401 S. Wabash Avenue, Chicago, IL 60605. 

Check in begins at 9:00 AM.  Network, expand your market base and build long-term relationships with new prospect consumers, contractors and sponsors.

Learn from expert panelist speakers the characteristics of community enterprises that thrive in a poor economy.  Empower your community enterprise for success.


Morning Session: Expert Panelist and Sponsor Presentations.

Introduction and presentation from SBND sponsors, community vendor exhibits and expert panelist speakers will begin at 9:30 AM and end at 2:30 PM.   During this segment of the event, prominent community and business leaders  will provide practical insight on how to grow and maintain a prosperous small business or nonprofit enterprise.

Theme: Treasure Map to the Mainstream of Success

  • Characteristics of Enterprises that Thrive in a Poor Economy
  • Infrastructure of Successful Enterprises (Governance, Finance and Resource Development)
  • Market Your Way to Success (Branding, Public Relations and Social Media) 

Evening Awards Ceremony

During the evening awards ceremony that begins at 5:30 PM and ends at 7:30 PM, U.S. Congressman Danny Davis will make opening remarks in honor of 2013 SBND Appreciation Awardees. 

Special Guest Speaker Honoree

Barry Moltz

Barry is a nationally recognized expert on small business who has given hundreds of presentations to audiences ranging in size from 20 to 20,000.  - See more at:

Special Guest Performance Honoree

A special culturally enriched and creative tribute will be presented by artists from “Images - Dare to Hope,” an inspirational short film, Executive Producer, Mahogany Scholarship Heritage Foundation. Click "Images" to see more.

During the ceremony, enjoy a buffet of delicious treats with your friends and business associates.

Register today by clicking the "REGISTER NOW" link here.

SBND Vet Initiative Free Guest Passes

Veterans, social enterprises, community organizations, college students and individuals are invited to register as volunteer SBND Community Enterprise Ambassadors.

SBND Ambassadors will volunteer as stage hands, set-up crew, VIP hosts, and phone bank call assitants.


  • Free guest pass to SBND Appreciation Awards Expo
  • Gain experience in event planning
  • Meet and mingle with prospect employers, investors, sponsors and customers
  • Free all day bus pass on day of event
  • Recognition as SBND Ambassordor during event and on SBND website
  • Free access to one 2014 SBND strategic organization development workshop
  • 60 Day Free Trial Constant Contact Email Marketing

If you are interested in learning how you or your organization can benefit from registering as an SBND Community Enterprise Ambassador and gain a free entry pass to the event, phone (773) 614-7619 or email

Sponsor & partner Opportunities

SBND Sponsor-Member Group Shot 07/16/12SBND's mission is to create platforms where entrepreneurs can gain the education, skills and financial resources needed to start and grow successful enterprises.

Register to be an SBND sponsor or vendor and be publicity recognized for your investment in development of new legal enterprises, jobs and tax revenue streams in Illinois, Cook County and Chicago communities.

Benefits: Gain access to high profile recognition in SBND's souvenir business program directory, link to your website on all social media marketing outlets, deliver your business presentation on SBND video commercial, access over 16,000 prospect consumers, and secure an opportunity to speak at the 2013 SBND Appreciation Awards Expo.

Our list of distinguished sponsors and exhibit vendors is growing, but space is limited!  Learn more about sonsor or vendor exhibitor opportunities by clicking here NOW.

Nita Marchant PhotoThe 2013 SBND Appreciation Awards Expo promises you an enjoyable learning experience, an opportunity to expand your market outreach and to engage with trend setters in community enterprise development.

 Space is limited, register today.

Ah, you say, I have plenty of time to register and meet these decision making change agents. But READ CAREFULLY!  SPACE IS LIMITED and YOU MUST REGISTER TO ATTEND.

This opportunity may never come again. Tomorrow is not promised!

Click the "REGISTER NOW" button below.  You will glad you did. 

Register Now!

  To learn more about SBND, visit our website at or phone (773) 614-7619.

Pre-registered 2013 Sponsors

We thank our early bird registered sponsors for investing in community enterprise empowerment.  Click the logo to learn more about our sponsors.  Learn more about sonsor or vendor exhibitor opportunites by clicking here NOW.