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25th Annual Membership Meeting NAHCC

Updated: Jun 28

The 25th annual membership meeting of members of NAHCC (Nashville Area Hispanic Chamber of Commerce) was held on April 30, a significant date given that the NAHCC is the oldest and longest-running 501(c)6 nonprofit Hispanic business organization in Tennessee.

It was recognized by Mayor O'Connell for its contribution to the city via a proclamation and a video message shared during the sold out, standing room only business gathering at the Nashville Entrepreneur Center in the heart of downtown Nashville. The event was, as usual, an excellent opportunity for learning and networking, listening to panels featuring the Director of Economic and Community Development Jamari Brown and Dr. Isaac Addae Ph.D., Small and Minority Business Liaison from Mayor Freddie O'Connell's office, with guest speakers ranging from David Plazas of The Tennessean, Luis Parodi of Republic Bank, Erica Pahua of Interim Healthcare and Ruth Cante of The C&F Company, LLC, among others. It was also a chance to greet acquaintances who have become like family and, above all, to gain new knowledge.

I would like to emphasize the great opportunities that chambers of commerce can provide. The NAHCC and Holly Rachel, Executive Director of the Darrell S. Freeman Sr. Incubation and Innovation Center, signed an agreement between organizations, committing to:

1. Improve education and financial access and empowerment.

2. Promote leadership and business advocacy.

3. Boost the certification of minority businesses, such as the ones available through the Governor's Office of Diversity Business Enterprise (Go-DBE) and the Nashville Airport (BNA).

Additionally, thanks to the agreement, the organizations will provide reciprocal memberships at the nonprofit level, invitations to events, website links, positions on advisory boards, mentoring, and promote open communication. They will also collaborate on other joint activities to improve Tennessee's business environment.

Personally, I believe these initiatives greatly benefit small business owners, and I would like to share my perspective, having recently graduated from a cohort resulting from a collaboration between NAHCC and Williamson, Inc. This Entrepreneur Academy, a 9 week program offered in Spanish, was designed to equip Hispanic entrepreneurs with essential tools to create a comprehensive business plan, build work teams, develop effective strategies, and successfully launch their business ideas. The sessions were conducted via Zoom by Claudia Zuazua from Williamson Inc, Yuri Cunza, and Loraine Segovia Paz from NAHCC and the NAHCC Foundation, respectively, based on the Kauffman Fast Track. The graduates from this inaugural cohort were: Monserrat Ángeles, Omar Carmona, María Cortés, Salvador García, Yulianny Maestre, Humberto Ruiz, Perla Salas, Ana Laura Sura, and myself.

But, what is a cohort? And how is it different from regular classes? While classes fluctuate within the university and graduate environment, with a cohort, the group knows exactly who will be in their courses.

The speakers, their companies, and the topics were as follows:

- PERLA SALAS / Perla Salas PLLC / Entrepreneur Lifestyle.

- KARINA GARCÍA / International Public Management Professional / From Idea to Business Concept.

- DIANA ROSALES / Be Más Digital / Market Study.

- ANA LAURA SURA / Personal Coach / Business Model Design - Pricing Strategies.

- MARIO RAMOS / Mario Ramos Law PLLC / Legal Strategies.

- JUAN LOMBERA / MC Granite Nashville / Distribution and Sales.

- VERÓNICA SAUTO / Saltus Training Group / Finances in Small Businesses.

- DIANA SÁNCHEZ VEGA / Sánchez-Vega Communications / Organization and Team Building.

- CLAUDIA ZUAZUA / Economic Development Coordinator│ Williamson, Inc. / Business Plan.

As you can see, some of the speakers also stayed for the classes. One should never stop learning!

During this graduation season, I want to congratulate everyone who has seen their efforts crowned at each educational stage, my course mates, and above all, I encourage you to seek knowledge at every opportunity and in every form that presents itself.



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