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The Institute for Entrepreneurial Leadership (IFEL) is hosting the 5th Annual Women of Color Connecting Virtual Summit March 7-9, which brings together thought leaders, policymakers, allies, and investors seeking to build a more inclusive entrepreneurial ecosystem.

Panel discussions will explore the unique challenges that women of color face trying to launch, grow and scale their businesses. The summit will also spotlight the entrepreneurial journeys of women of color and bring together the positive energy needed to propel systemic change.

“Bringing together Women of Color entrepreneurs and the allies, champions, and investors who want to support them is the driving force behind WOCCON 2023,” said IFEL CEO Jill Johnson. “We are coalescing an amazing group of people. The message to these entrepreneurs and founders is that we are here for you. The message to the allies, investors, and policymakers is that you must act with intentionality to open doors for women of color entrepreneurs.”

Capital constraint remains a significant barrier for women of color entrepreneurs and founders, who receive a small fraction of venture capital. According to Crunchbase News, in 2021 Black-founded startups received just $1.6 billion, a mere 1.4% out of the total $110.4 billion. Latinx companies received $1.7 billion, representing 1.5% of the total. In 2022, startups with at least one Black founder received only 1.2% of overall venture dollars invested in the U.S.

Highlights of WOCCON Summit 2023 include the panel “Insights from Women of Color Entrepreneurs,” featuring three powerful women of color founders who are making their mark on the world: Kim Roxie, founder, Lamik Beauty in Houston; Emelyn Stuart, CEO, Stuart Cinema & Cafe, Brooklyn, NY; and Robin Wilson, founder, Robin Wilson Home, New York.

To request an invitation to WOCCON Summit 2023, go here. For media sponsorship information, contact IFEL Public Relations Manager Lori Anne Oliwa at or (973) 353-0611×125.

About IFEL

The Institute for Entrepreneurial Leadership (IFEL) is a 501(c)3 nonprofit that leverages the power of relationship capital to create pathways to success for Black and Latinx entrepreneurs and small business owners. Founded in 2002, IFEL’s mission is to eradicate the systemic barriers that prevent people from historically excluded populations from being able to access the knowledge, networks, and capital required for entrepreneurial success and wealth creation.