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Monthly Archives: August 2019

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State of Women-Owned Business

This report focuses on women-owned businesses, which are defined as businesses that are at least 51% owned, operated, and controlled by one or more females. Over the past 46 years, women of all ages have become business owners in droves – from baby boomers and Gen Xers to millennials and younger generations. The number of women-owned businesses increased a dramatic 31 times between 1972 and 2018, rising from 402,000 (4.6% of all firms) in 1972 to 12.3 million (40% of all firms) in 2018. Employment surged from 230,000 to 9.2 million, growing 40-fold. Revenues rose from $8.1 billion (representing 0.3% of all firms revenue) in 1972 to $1.8 trillion (4.3% of total firms revenue) in 2018 — a breathtaking multiple of 217. In-depth analysis of the period 2007-2018 showed that overall growth in women-owned businesses has continued unabated for the last 11 years:

  • The number of women-owned businesses surged 58%, while all businesses increased only 12%.
  • Total employment by women-owned businesses rose 21%, while for all businesses it declined 0.8%.
  • Total revenue of women-owned businesses jumped 46%, while revenue for all businesses increased 36%.

In the meantime, while the number of all firms increased by 1.0% annually between 2007 and 2018, the number of women-owned businesses grew 4.2% each year. There was an uptick in the annual growth rate for the most recent year: 6% for women-owned firms and 1.6% for all firms. Four out of every 10 businesses (40%) in the United States are now women-owned. These businesses employ 8% of the total private sector workforce and contribute 4.3% of total revenues. The combination of women-owned businesses and firms equally owned by men and women — 14,622,700 — account for 48% of all businesses. These firms employ 16,155,900 people or 14% of the workforce and generate $3.1 trillion or 7% of revenues.


Meet the Chair - Nicole Vonetta

Welcome Members and Visitors,

Thank you for your membership and commitment to the women in our community. On behalf of the DeKalb Chamber of Commerce, I am humbled and honored to be the Chair of the Women Executive Leadership of DeKalb.  

Growing up in Guyana, South America, I watched my mom live an aggressively enterprising life as a teacher, women activist and Union President. My admiration of her strength and versatility ignited the passion for women empowerment and entrepreneurship.

Before establishing Makeda Woman, I explored entrepreneurship with several small businesses. This experience has afforded me opportunities to understand the challenges and gratification of women entrepreneurship. 

According to Alex Camardelle, Women Mean Business, 2019, “Entrepreneurship clears a path to wealth through business ownership”.

Small business ownership, when done well, is wealth-building beyond the individual. It is also wealth-building for the community.

Today, Georgia ranks second in the nation for the growth of women-owned businesses. I believe that such growth empowers women living in the fourth largest county in Georgia to explore their fullest potential as individual wealth and community builders.

We all can benefit from this next step in evolution, enriching and growing our women business community. By being an active member of WELD, you play a very important and rewarding part in supporting our Chamber and the women business community.    

Besides being business owners, as women, we possess gifts and talents that can empower each other as well as the young middle and high school entrepreneur. By coming together through networking, story sharing, and community–building, we can help lead and grow the women of DeKalb. 

With so many challenges, you may be asking yourself, “what can I do to help?” It just so happens that there are very simple things that you can do as we rebrand Women Executive Leaders of DeKalb:

  • Invite a business owner, a manager or a salesperson to a Chamber event.
  • Meet and speak to someone you don’t know at every event you attend.
  • Meet with other members one-to-one at least weekly. This does not have to be a formal business meeting. Make it fun. Play golf, go bowling, meet for lunch or happy hour. Engaging in other activities besides work builds value in business and business relationships.
  • Get involved and encourage others to get involved. Joining committees and volunteering at events is the easiest way to promote your business or your cause without even trying.
  • Share our Chamber events on social media. This costs nothing and takes less than one minute. Imagine what would happen if we do this for WELD and each other. Just do it.

We are part of a great community. We are part of a great Chamber of Commerce. It is going to be an awesome year as we each play a role in growing and improving WELD, the Chamber and our community.

Thanks in advance for joining me in meeting our challenges as we embark on making WELD and the Chamber a hub of resources and empowerment for businesswomen living, working and thriving in DeKalb.

All the best,

Nicole Vonetta.

Women In Welding


DeKalb Chamber Hosts Business Roundtable with Congresswoman Lucy McBath

DeKalb Chamber Hosts Business Roundtable with Congresswoman Lucy McBath

DECATUR, Ga., – Aug. 2, 2019 – DeKalb Chamber convened more than 20 business owners, entrepreneurs and business advocates for a roundtable discussion with Congresswoman Lucy McBath on July 30 at Corporate Environment Risk Management (CERM) in Tucker.

“We are appreciative for the opportunity to have hosted this business roundtable and tour CERM with Managing Director and Founder, Al Edwards. Congresswoman McBath’s intentional actions around business in the 6th District are not only great for the DeKalb business community, but it creates a platform for more substantial work and advocacy to get done,” said Katerina Taylor, President & CEO of DeKalb Chamber. “As we look for ways to stimulate and diversify our business community, we know these ongoing conversations will help us focus on crafting and supporting the right policies.”

The group voiced their concerns around finding a qualified and ready workforce and specialized job training for niche markets; creating a funding model for entrepreneurs, small businesses and scaling businesses; securing government contracting opportunities for women- and minority-owned businesses; identifying possible legislation that close a gap for women and minorities that are A(8) certified businesses and more.

“I want to thank Katerina and the entire DeKalb small business community for convening today’s discussion,” McBath said. “I was grateful to hear from so many representatives of the thriving business community here in Georgia’s sixth district. I look forward to championing more legislative priorities that will deliver more federal dollars and resources to the district and ensure our small businesses have the tools they need to succeed.”

Congresswoman McBath also toured CERM, an environmental engineering firm, and learned how the small business started with three employees in 1995 and grew to employ more than 100 employees with work in Alabama and Florida. The roundtable also served as an opportunity for Congresswoman McBath to learn about the work of other businesses in her district.

To download a photos from the roundtable, please click here.


The DeKalb Chamber of Commerce is a membership-based organization with the mission to support, promote and sustain business development in DeKalb County. With 81 years of service in the community, DeKalb Chamber focuses on four critical areas including education, workforce and economic development, public policy, and business member services. We are the primary resource for businesses in DeKalb County. For more information on DeKalb Chamber, please visit their website at www.dekalbchamber.org or call 404-378-8000.