The BOSS Network, an online community of professional and entrepreneurial women who support each other through digital content, programs and event-based networking, and Sage (FTSE: SGE), the leader in accounting, financial, HR and payroll technology for small and mid-sized businesses, today announced the 25 awardees of the 2023 Sage Invest in Progress grant to support black women entrepreneurs in their first five years of business. The BOSS Network and Sage “Invest in Progress” grant is a three-year, $1.5 million commitment by Sage (via the Sage Foundation) to support the BOSS Impact Fund, which is focused on raising investment funding for 500+ black women-led businesses and preparing entrepreneurs to build scalable, growth aggressive companies.
In January 2023, participants were invited to apply for the “Invest in Progress” grant–which would give 25 Black women entrepreneurs the opportunity to receive a capital investment of $10,000 toward successfully starting and growing their business, in addition to an entrepreneurial mentor program in support of Black women-owned small businesses. The grant application process was powered by Hello Alice, a grant funding platform designed for entrepreneurs and small businesses.
Last year, the inaugural launch garnered an overwhelming response of more than 12,500 applicants nationwide. This year, the program exceeded its goal with over 18,000 applicants. The final 25 awardees represent entrepreneurs from around the country and in various industries, including: beauty, entertainment, education, food, healthcare, meal prep services, naturopathy, law and more.
The BOSS Network and Sage “Invest in Progress” grant includes a 12-month program of entrepreneurial mentorship, coaching, connections and education focused on knocking down barriers to business success and guiding these businesswomen to reach their full potential. Each “Invest in Progress” grant awardee receives:
- $10,000 USD in funding
- Quarterly business training courses through BOSS University sponsored by Sage, focusing on Marketing, Finance, Customer Service, and Business Strategy
- Access to The BOSS Network online community
- Complimentary Sage Business Cloud Accounting software
“Invest in Progress” Grant Awardees:
See below for a listing of this year’s twenty-five “Invest in Progress” grant awardees, including their business and location:
1. Jordan Madison, Therapy is My J.A.M. (Silver Spring, MD)
2. Kendra Payne, The Herbal Scoop LLC (Narrowsburg, NY)
3. Isaro Carter, The Carter Firm LLC (Laurelton, NY)
4. Kimberly Jones, Speak Black Health (Houston, TX)
5. Tirzah Love, Soul Box By Chef Tirzah Love (Oakland, CA)
6. Jade Parker, ROJOrganics (Indianapolis, IN)
7. Stephanie Lane, Pure Ingredients Farm, LLC (Marlton, NJ)
8. Kaylenne Brown, Plant-Based Eatz LLC (Atlanta, GA)
9. Christina Cockrell, Persist Education Services LLC (Atlanta, GA)
10. Lura Ball, Lura’s Kitchen, Inc. (Los Angeles, CA)
11. Kyndra Kennedy, Kyna Media Films, LLC (North Hollywood, CA)
12. Shekira Farrell, Jai At Play (Neptune, NJ)
13. Jasmine Weiss, iDream Enterprise, LLC (Loganville, GA)
14. Nathalie Mondesir, Ideal Mind & Body (San Jose, CA)
15. Cassandra Hill, Holistic Living Consulting LLC (Osceola, AR)
16. Cesley Fullilove, Fullilove Pregnancy Center (Atlanta, GA)
17. Karima Wilson, Forged Ed LLC (Providence, RI)
18. Briana Nurse, EH Exchange (Fort Lee, NJ)
19. Alicia Bowens, Diamond Luxury Investments LLC (Chicago, IL)
20. Chevarrie Butler, Cortney Blooms LLC (Orland Park, IL)
21. Dianne Austin, Coils to Locs (New Orleans, LA)
22. Tavia Green, Climax Hair Care (Atlanta, GA)
23. CherRaye Glenn-Flowers, Brownce (Temple, PA)
24. Brianna Hairlson, Bri’s Dance Place (Exton, PA)
25. Jon’ll Boyd, Boyd Cru Wines (Silver Spring, MD)
“The BOSS Network is extremely thrilled to partner with Sage once again for the second year of its ‘Invest in Progress’ grant.” said Dr. Cameka Smith, Founder and CEO of The BOSS Network. “This year, 25 Black women entrepreneurs will once again receive the benefit of not only receiving $10,000 towards their business, but also premier coaching and mentoring services that will put them on the road to achieving the success they desire. As the BOSS Network approaches its 15th anniversary next year—as well as the third year of this grant program—we look forward to making even more inroads to benefit this robust community.”
The funding for the Invest in Progress grant program is managed through the Sage Foundation, which was established in 2016 to bring to life Sage’s ambition for social impact. Working with Sage colleagues, customers, and partners, the mission of the Sage Foundation is to tackle societal and economic inequality through investments in education, technology, and the environment to give individuals, communities, and our planet the opportunity to thrive.
For more information on the BOSS Network and Sage “Invest in Progress” grant and the BOSS Impact Fund, visit BOSSImpactFund.com.
About The BOSS Network
Founded by Dr. Cameka Smith, BOSS™ is an acronym for “Bringing Out Successful Sisters,” and the network’s mission is to promote and encourage the small business spirit and career development of women. The BOSS Network is an online community of professional and entrepreneurial women who support each other through conversation, online, and event-based networking. To find out more about The BOSS Network, please visit www.TheBOSSNetwork.org. The BOSS Network was named as a Forbes Top 10 Career and Entrepreneurial website for Women. More than 200,000 active women members throughout the United States are engaged through its social and digital programming. The BOSS Network’s latest initiative is the BOSS Impact Fund, with a focus on grant funding for 500+ Black women entrepreneurs, over the next three years. In addition, each grant recipient will have a 1-year scholarship to its BOSS Business University, a digital mentorship program that will provide a comprehensive entrepreneurship curriculum, to assist in long-term business growth.
Sage exists to knock down barriers so everyone can thrive, starting with the millions of small- and mid-sized businesses served by us, our partners, and accountants. Customers trust our finance, HR, and payroll software to make work and money flow. By digitizing business processes and relationships with customers, suppliers, employees, banks and governments, our digital network connects SMBs, removing friction and delivering insights. Knocking down barriers also means we use our time, technology, and experience to tackle digital inequality, economic inequality, and the climate crisis. Learn more at www.sage.com/en-us/.