Thursday, November 30, 2023
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CEO Chatter LIVE: Boss Chat w/ Dr. Cameka Smith of The BOSS Network

On CEO Chatter LIVE this week, Fancy is joined by Dr. Cameka Smith of The BOSS Network. The BOSS Network is a digital platform for black women entrepreneurs. Dr. Smith launched this community almost 15 years ago. As an event planner and marketing executive, Dr. Smith was looking for resources and opportunities to network with other minority women who wanted to start businesses. So she decided to create her own series of events around entrepreneurship for Black women. “During those events, women just kept asking me, “How can I join your community? ” And I would be like,  “Oh, it’s not a community,” Dr. Smith shares. “As any good entrepreneur would do, I just started doing my research on communities and how I could best engage these women.”


Dr. Smith and her team saw that less than 1% of Black women get access to venture capital funding. She explains, “There’s this disparity when it comes to getting traditional bank loans because of racism and all types of biases that happen. And so I said, “You know what? If I can go to my sponsors- my partners, and we can launch our own fund, maybe we can support some of these women to help get them through this period.” That’s how we created and launched the Boss Impact Fund.”


The BOSS Network’s goal l was to raise $10 million over the next five years to invest in Black women entrepreneurs. They launched their first investment progress grant program with $1.5 million with a partner called Sage. So far, they’ve invested in 48 Black women. At the time of this interview, The Boss Network had received over 15,000 applications for the 2023 grant, which was marketed across social media and business/entrepreneurship platforms, including Hello Alice.  The grant closed on February 25, 2023, but Dr. Smith says it will return next year, so be ready. 


Skip to the good part


3 Takeaways from the Interview:


  • Do your research when considering partnering with companies or pursuing sponsorships. 


  • Relationships are essential for growth. 


  • Know how you plan to utilize your funds. 


Connect with Dr. Cameka Smith & The BOSS Network:

To learn more about The BOSS Network, visit https://www.thebossnetwork.org.

Instagram: @thebossnetwork | @iamCameka

For more CEO Chatter LIVE and blogs, click here.

Francheska Felder
Francheska Felderhttp://swagheronline.com
Francheska "Fancy" Felder is the founder/publisher/EIC of SwagHer Magazine. She is a -Single mother of 3 -Libra - Trapping scribe -Lover -Mental health advocate - Country girl -Proud, liberated Black goddess ________________________________________ Long Bio: Francheska “Fancy” Felder is the owner of Fancy’s Thoughts and the award-winning publisher and editor-in-chief of SwagHer Magazine, a lifestyle and empowerment publication for the Black woman who likes to keep it real in life and business. The magazine doubles as a PR boutique offering public relations services and visibility coaching, and Fancy strategically executes brand campaigns for Black women CEOs, coaches, and authors. The former teen mom started the company in 2010 while working as an exotic dancer, but soon after, her love for empowering Black women led her to abandon that lifestyle. She has received awards for her work as a positive news publisher and journalist telling the stories of Black women and other informative news that the Black community finds relevant, including the severe topics of Black mental health and domestic violence. The podcast she co-hosts with Arnya T.M. Davis, Theories & Thoughts, also continues these conversations. Fancy publicly speaks about her battle with bipolar disorder with hopes of helping others begin their wellness paths. She also shares her mental health story in contribution to the I Am a Black Woman- Next Level anthology, an Amazon Best-Seller. In the summer of 2022, RallyUp Magazine, a mental health magazine, featured Fancy as their cover story, where she opened up about receiving her diagnosis. The McComb, Mississippi native is part of Facebook’s independent journalism project, Bulletin, where she publishes The Higher South, and she was a member of the NABJ Entrepreneur Academy powered by CafeMedia in 2021. The Glambitous Guide to Self-Love, Peace, and Confidence contributor is an avid learner and creative. Currently, she is attending Southern University A&M College, completing her bachelor's degree and rearing her three young adults. Fancy enjoys learning more about spirituality, Black history, and feminism in her free time, along with yoga and walking.

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