Recap | Forging Herstory: Women in Entrepreneurship

DEPAUL UNIVERSITY COLEMAN ENTREPRENEURSHIP CENTER

DePaul's new entrepreneurship fraternity, Epsilon Nu Tau, brought us in to facilitate a three-hour experience dubbed "Women in Entrepreneurship: Forging Herstory" on January 18. This experience featured entrepreneurs, Keisha Howard and Patrice Darby, and put a spotlight on their entrepreneurial journeys as well as their WTF Moment. Yes, the real "WTF."

Keisha Howard is the Founder of The BlazeBreakers LLC and the Sugar Gamers. The BlazeBreakers LLC is a boutique digital marketing agency, using a unique formula to invent potent strategies for brands they love. The Sugar Gamers is a community for female gamers that has evolved into a passionate organization of trend-setters and communicators within the worlds of  tech, fashion and gaming. Check out Keisha in the Chicago Reader here!  

Keisha Howard is the Founder of The BlazeBreakers LLC and the Sugar Gamers. The BlazeBreakers LLC is a boutique digital marketing agency, using a unique formula to invent potent strategies for brands they love. The Sugar Gamers is a community for female gamers that has evolved into a passionate organization of trend-setters and communicators within the worlds of  tech, fashion and gaming. Check out Keisha in the Chicago Reader here!

 

Inclusion is a deliberate action with education, and is proactive.
— Keisha Howard
Patrice Darby is the Founder of GoNanny, a modern-day care service for busy parents with active kids. With over a decade of childcare experience, Patrice Darby is committed to helping families develop more balanced lives by merging childcare with technology. Her pursuit began as an assistant preschool teacher and continued beyond college as she earned her BA in Education. Patrice has operated in numerous leadership roles including: assistant preschool teacher, assistant director, camp counselor, youth director, program director, nanny, and soccer coach throughout Illinois and Michigan.

Patrice Darby is the Founder of GoNanny, a modern-day care service for busy parents with active kids. With over a decade of childcare experience, Patrice Darby is committed to helping families develop more balanced lives by merging childcare with technology. Her pursuit began as an assistant preschool teacher and continued beyond college as she earned her BA in Education. Patrice has operated in numerous leadership roles including: assistant preschool teacher, assistant director, camp counselor, youth director, program director, nanny, and soccer coach throughout Illinois and Michigan.

The most freedom in life is when you’re building.
— Patrice Darby

Soon after sharing their solutions with their fellow teams and speakers, the panel began. Keisha and Patrice were joined by two allies and entrepreneurial supporters - Jeff Beckham and Abin Kuriakose.

Jeff Beckham is the Founder and President of Black Box Creative, Inc., an information technology and innovation organization that consistently delivers results by aligning technology initiatives and marketing initiatives with customers' business goals. Jeff also sits on various boards creating opportunities for underrepresented students and communities - Good City Chicago and 100 Black Men of America, just to name a few. Abin Kuriakose serves as a Program Manager for ChicagoNEXT at World Business Chicago, which leads a portfolio of initiatives and programs to drive growth of Chicago's global technology and innovation ecosystem. Abin's strategic focus areas include venture capital, innovation in industry and government, tech talent development and building community through entrepreneurship and technology. Abin also serves as Senior Advisor for Paja Krishnamoorhi for Congress (Congressman of Illinois' 8th District elected in 2016). Abin advises multiple civic tech startups and spends much of his time advocating for communities in need across the city and beyond.

Jeff Beckham is the Founder and President of Black Box Creative, Inc., an information technology and innovation organization that consistently delivers results by aligning technology initiatives and marketing initiatives with customers' business goals. Jeff also sits on various boards creating opportunities for underrepresented students and communities - Good City Chicago and 100 Black Men of America, just to name a few.

Abin Kuriakose serves as a Program Manager for ChicagoNEXT at World Business Chicago, which leads a portfolio of initiatives and programs to drive growth of Chicago's global technology and innovation ecosystem. Abin's strategic focus areas include venture capital, innovation in industry and government, tech talent development and building community through entrepreneurship and technology. Abin also serves as Senior Advisor for Paja Krishnamoorhi for Congress (Congressman of Illinois' 8th District elected in 2016). Abin advises multiple civic tech startups and spends much of his time advocating for communities in need across the city and beyond.

Here are their top tips for entrepreneurs!

Pick your team wisely.
— Jeff Beckham
Explore your opportunities.
— Abin Kuriakose
Be emotionally fortified.
— Keisha Howard
Do not allow anyone to put you in a box or industry. Forge ahead.
— Patrice Darby