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Blog: 10000 Small Businesses


What’s Bernadette’s Why? Partnerships


BC Design Haus is a woman- and Asian-owned, design and branding agency based in Pasadena, California. Bernadette Capulong, the company’s CEO, describes herself as an accidental entrepreneur, having turned to self-employment to replace her income after being laid off during the Great Recession. Since the firm’s official launch in 2015, she has led the company to achieve double-digit revenue growth year over year. BCDH was recognized nationally for its growth, appearing for the second year in a row on the Inner City 100 Awards list in 2023. This success would not be possible without Capulong’s persistent focus on building partnerships with her clients and her team. Her nearly decade-long journey as an entrepreneur has taught her five key lessons: seek out a program like Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses, understand that owning a small business is a long game, seek advice from a mentor, hire the right people, and be good to your clients. Read More


What’s Mouji Boulanger’s Why? Access


Mouji Boulanger is the founder and president of Create, Enjoy, Inspire, Inc. (CEI), a woman-owned construction company based in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Boulanger focuses on building people first and then building the business. CEI helps tradespeople without college degrees advance into leadership roles in project management and superintendent positions. Her commitment to her mission and her community has led to the success of her business. CEI's four-year growth rate of 3,719.70% earned the company the number two ranking in its debut appearance on ICIC's Inner City 100 Awards list in 2023. While attending the awards ceremony, Boulanger was elated to find that she had finally found her community of like-minded business people. Her story is a testament to the fact that success comes when you focus on building relationships, helping people grow, and working towards a greater purpose. Read More


A Year of Recognition: Members of ICIC’s Alumni Network Receive Local and National Awards


The small business awards season is a time for entrepreneurs to be honored by various organizations, societies, and government agencies. ICIC’s Inner City Alumni Network (ICAN) members excelled during the 2023 awards season, receiving prestigious local and national awards. Among the award winners were:

  • Kimberly Black, CEO and President, Trusted Field Services
  • Cassandria Campbell, CEO, Fresh Food Generation
  • Lawrence Charles, Founder, Charles and Company
  • David Delancy, Owner and CEO, One Day Came
  • Vicki Gray, Founder and CEO, New Chapter HI Services
  • Cuong Quy “CQ” Huynh, Co-Founder, General Manager, and Treasurer, Rende Progress Capital
  • Louise Leduc Kennedy, Founding Attorney, West Hill Technology Counsel, Inc.
  • Pamela Nelson, Founder and CEO, Bracane Company
  • Caron Ng, CEO, NU-SET Inc.
  • Liseth Velez, Founder and CEO, LJV Development
The 2024 season will begin just before May and conclude in December. However, there are a few organizations that have already announced honorees. The Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC) revealed the 14 winners of its 2024 Star Award, three of which are ICAN members: Michele Adams, CEO and President of Levy Recognition; Louise Leduc Kennedy, Founding Attorney of West Hill Technology Counsel, Inc.; and Barb Smith, President of Journey Steel. Read More


What’s Chef Farrell’s Why? Creative Freedom: Finding Joy and Purpose in the Culinary Arts


Chef Saidah Farrell is the founder, CEO, and owner of Olivia Rose Confections, best known for their Marshmallow of the Month Club subscription box. The box is described as a s’more survival kit and includes chocolate bars, a house-made gourmet hot chocolate mix, freshly baked graham crackers, and the marshmallow of the month. Made from the freshest ingredients, Farrell has crafted 50 different flavors of these artisan marshmallows, spanning from traditional favorites like lemon, chocolate, and strawberry to decadent combinations like butter brandy, ginger cinnamon peach, and raspberry lime prosecco. Motivated by a desire to maintain creative freedom, the success that Chef Farrell has experienced over the last decade is the result of an unrelenting positive attitude and a willingness to learn, pivot, and adapt. A graduate of the Goldman Sachs One Million Black Women: Black in Business and the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses programs, Farrell’s journey is a testament to the power of resilience and a supportive community. Read More


Riveo Creative: A Journey of Growth, Purpose, and Positive Impact


Elin Barton's entrepreneurial journey with White Knight Productions, now rebranded as Riveo Creative, is a tale of resilience, growth, and purpose-driven impact. Faced with the challenge of expanding nationally in 2015, Elin turned to the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Program, overcoming a setback with determination and completing the program. Years later, her pursuit of social impact led to a transformative experience with the ICCC program, inspiring a partnership between ICIC and Riveo Creative. Believing in the power of connections, Elin has fostered a community of entrepreneurs for nearly a decade. In 2023, Riveo Creative embraced a renewed purpose, aligning with ICIC's values of diversity and sustainability, and amplifying the voices of small businesses and communities. The journey continues as Riveo Creative takes intentional steps toward a future of exponential positive impact, celebrating shared success in community empowerment. Read More


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