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Newsletter I: June 2018

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BEACON community members at the WERKIN Mentorship Platform Launch event. (Pictured Left to Right) Randy Fahmy - Founder, Makeup America!, Keri Lijinsky - Founder, Sweet Crimes, Valerie Navarre - Founder, Take2Decorating, and Julia Westfall - CEO, Hera Hub + BEACON Board Member

BEACON Joins Alice + 50 Ecosystem Leaders for Program on Inclusive Ecosystems  
BEACON joined Alice, the virtual business advisor, and 50 ecosystem builders at the United Nations Foundation to discuss strategies for building inclusive small business ecosystems. Check out Alice's new digital video series, Role Breakers, which elevates the stories of diverse founders. Stay tuned for more to come!

Support these founders during the Vinettta Project's Venture Challenge Semifinals!
On June 20th, The Vinetta Project's DC Chapter will bring together female founders to pitch and get feedback from investors. Check out the innovative companies that will take the stage:

Kimberly Moore, GoTogether: The company created Carpool2School, a product "innovating the ways parents, schools and teams safely get their children to be successful in life.

Dawn Musil, HiveLend: A platform connecting local beekeepers with farmers who rent hives. 

Ronit Avni, Localized: A platform built for professionals who want career guidance from experts. The multilingual platform offers mentorship and group learning. 

Dipanwita Das, Socero: The company offers tools to help find answers at work using artificial intelligence and training solutions. 

Looking for DC's tech resources? This woman-owned company is helping to guide the way. 
Silver Strategy, a women-led PR & Marketing agency in DC, released the "Washington, DC Tech Resource Guide" as a one-stop-shop for finding the support that DC's tech ecosystem has to offer. Check out the list and offer suggestions or changes by tweeting to @silverstrategy or emailing

Nominate a changemaker for the Women in Economic Development and Civic Engagement Awards!
Walker's Legacy is proud to partner with the African-American Mayors Association and Axios to celebrate the achievements of multicultural women who champion the development of policy and programs to advance economic development, entrepreneurial ecosystems, and job opportunities within their local communities. Nominate her by 6/15.

DC Small Business Week -  In Review 
Check out coverage of the widespread community support during DC Small Busines Week! 

Check out our feature in DCInno!
Inclusive Innovation Fellow, Deloris Wilson, was recently interview on findings from her report, "Building Inclusive Ecosystems with Intentionality." Check out the coverage here

The 2018-2019 BEACON Grant Program is launching soon!
Stay on the lookout for details on the 2018-2019 BEACON Grant Program! You won't want to miss our launch event happening later this month.

Did you miss the DC Biz Chat Presentation on Financing Your Business?
In May, the Washinton, DC Economic Partnership hosted an interactive presentation on financing your business. Missed the event? Click here for the full presentation. 

Interested in partnering with us, or have some news to share? Submit a Partnership Request Form and/or email We'll be in touch! 
Upcoming Opportunities
Funding Opportunities + Technical Support

The Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) has issued a Broad Agency Announcement for innovative proposals for initiatives that support minority business owners. Priorities include Access to Capital, Global Minority Women's Economic Empowerment Initiatives, HBCUs, virtual business centers and more. Apply by 7/11.

MADE to MARKET's cohort-based program helps DC's product-based businesses brand their products and reach more customers. Apply by 6/24

Are you the founder or co-founder of a tech-enabled social impact company? Apply to pitch for the BEACON: Social Impact Dolphin Tank presented by Springboard Enterprises. Applications are open and the live pitch event will take place on 6/28.

Do you have an idea to make DC more awesome? The Awesome Foundation will award $1,000 grants to support projects that directly benefit DC. Grants are awarded monthly but apply by 6/13 if interested in pitching at their first ever live pitch event on 6/25

The PayPal Business Makeover Contest awards three businesses with $10,000 and a complete business makeover! Apply by 6/15.

Lighthouse Labs is the premiere nationally ranked startup accelerator in Virginia. They are a non-profit, mentor-driven startup acceleration program that provides $20,000 to accepted startups without taking equity. They also connect promising founders with proven mentors, investors, support services, working space and lean startup education to move from idea to viable high growth venture in 3 months. Apply by 6/15.

Conscious Venture Lab® and SHIFT Ventures deal with companies that look to improve how we live together, find new ways to use technology to increase economic opportunities, create more livable and equitable urban environments, and provide services to issues like overtaxed civic infrastructure, high unemployment, intractable violence, transportation, access to health care and food and water shortages that making city living continually more difficult. Apply by 6/17.

Dreamit Health is an accelerator and venture fund designed to help pre-Series A startups with initial sales traction who are looking to gain customers and to scale quickly and efficiently. The program is 14 weeks, over half of which is virtual (to suit the needs of more mature startups). These weeks are filled with intensive, growth-focused programming, hands-on coaching, warm introductions to enterprise-level customers, two weeks of meetings with potential customers (“Customer Immersions”), and a two-week East and West coast investor roadshow to build relationships with top-tier VCs. And unlike most startup accelerators, Dreamit does not take a fixed equity stake for entrance into the program. Apply by 6/20.

The  Inaugural PitcHER™ contest is a pitch competition that brings leading women entrepreneurs to the Grace Hopper Celebration – the world’s largest gathering of women technologists – September 26 to 28, in Houston, Texas, with the goal of supporting, encouraging, and providing new funding opportunities to these entrepreneurs. Apply by 6/30.

Pitch with Purpose is a global pitch competition celebrating and rewarding diverse founders who have committed their companies to social good. Learn more and apply by 7/31.


Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Program equips participants with practical skills in negotiation, marketing and employee management that immediately be put into action. Components include practical business education, access to capital and a supportive network of advisors and peers. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis year-round

The Greater Washington Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (GWHCC) and BloomShift will offer up to 25 hours of free digital marketing assistance for qualifying businesses. Any business registered in Washington, D.C. may apply but the program is designed to serve low and middle-income D.C.-based businesses who need marketing support to reach the next level. Learn more and apply now - rolling admissions are accepted until September 2018.

The PeaceTech Accelerator provides an eight-week structured program in Washington, DC including mentorship, sprints and tutorials for startups that apply technology to assist communities in conflict and crisis zones. The program covers all aspects of scaling up, with a focus on scaling using the cloud. Participants will receive $50k in credits for Amazon Web Services and a $15,000 cash investment. Click here to learn more - admissions are rolling and the program begins June 4th. 

500 Startups wants to train accredited, underrepresented investors. Click here to learn more about the program and scholarship offers for "Venture Capital Unlocked: The Secrets of Silicon Valley."
Community News
Upcoming Events
6.15: Boss Up! The Black Girl Ventures Pitch Competition

6.15: District Capitalized Info Session; DC Small Business Loans

6.18: 12th Annual DC Board of Barber & Cosmetology Forum

6.19: Business Insurance 101

6.19: Veteran Connect Happy Hour 

6.20: Vinetta Venture Challenge Showcase

6.20: Build a Dream Entrepreneurial Workshop - Basic Business Financials

6.20: Trademark Basics Workshop Basics presented by Washington Area Lawyers for the Arts

6.21: DC Startup Week Hackers & Founders Rooftop Social 

6.21: Como empezar su negocio en Washington, DC

6.22-24: Startup Weekend Heroes Edition

6.25: Awesome Foundation Live Pitch Event

6.26: Gateway into the China Market presented by the DC Chamber of Commerce

6.26: American Express Summit for Success

6.27: Build a Dream Workshop - Pitching in All Its Forms 

6.28: Womens Empowerment Program-Combined Master Business Pitch Event 

6.28: BEACON: Social Impact Dolphin Tank presented by Springboard Enterprises

6.28: Corporate Forms & Contracts presented by Street Entrepreneurs

6.28: Senior Entrepreneurship Program

7.14: Sip & Paint for a Cause

7.14: A Hustler's Guide to Hacking Your PR

7.18: Creating a 501(c)(3) Workshop presented by Washington Area Lawyers for the Arts

7.19: Challenge HER: Opportunities for Women in Federal Contracting

7.24: The Unplugged Series: The Builder Dinner

Ongoing: DCRA's Small Business Resource Center offers one-on-one consultation on an on-going basis. Sign-up for a time convenient for you.

Ongoing: "Guru" Sessions hosted by women founders at Hera Hub DC 

Ongoing: Register for the Made East River Directory for creative products/services based in Ward 7/8 neighborhoods 
Entrepreneur Spotlight
Tammy Hui Law + Strategy PLLC provides practical legal advice to nonprofits and small businesses in the areas of entity formation, corporate governance, legal compliance and business transactions. They are committed to providing excellent service at a reasonable price-point to help clients budget around their legal to-do lists. 

Founder and Principal Tammy Hui is a new business owner that seeks to be connected to others in the BEACON community. So, don't be hesitant to reach out! 
Resource Spotlight
Street Entrepreneurs is a community run non-profit that ignites the power of entrepreneurs by investing in grit and talent through business education, mentorship and start-up grants. 

Founder and CEO, Juliana Cardona Mejia, is an inquisitive, passionate and creative thinker that is eternally iterating community solutions that drive action. She is a student of community organizing, human-centered design, improv and creative facilitation techniques. 

Interested in supporting Street Entrepreneurs? Join the team for a fundraising happy hour on June 26th on Amazon DC's rooftop. Click here to RSVP.

Scholarships are available for Deal Camp - a four-day training institute for investors. Apply by 7/21. 

Nominations for the Women in Economic Development and Civic Engagement Awards close 6/15.

Are you interested in volunteering during D.C. Startup Week (Sep 24-28, 2018)? Various opportunities include mentors, day-of-event logistics, marketing, speaker, and core team roles. Learn more and apply today!

Are you interested in serving as a mentor? Empowered Women International is recruiting for mentors for the Entrepreneur Training for Success program. If interested in learning more, contact Alexandra Boycheck at Mentors are needed in Rockville (English) and Herndon (Spanish). 

Are you looking for a job or gig with a value-based company? Find teams that share your interests and values through

Angel Track is a masterclass and community for angel investors who are just getting started. They are specifically looking to support women and minorities interested in investing. Click here to apply for their Spring 2018 cohort.

Do you know of opportunities that could benefit the BEACON community? Share them with us via
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