To honor the contributions that female business leaders make throughout the Sacramento Region and support efforts to recover from the impacts of the pandemic, Republic FC and Suncrest Bank are once again looking to award $10,500 in grant prizes to local, women-owned businesses through the Republic FC Kickstart program during Women’s History Month.
The third edition of the small-business support program, powered by fan and community nominations and voting, will provide another $10,500 in cash grants, as well as additional educational resources and services to every nominee from Suncrest Bank. To close out 2020, the program awarded $21,000 to ten organizations that were facing challenges related to the pandemic that provide a wide array of services to the community, demonstrating the diversity of the region. The Sacramento Metro Chamber is joining this edition of Republic FC Kickstart as the largest and longest-tenured business advocacy group serving the region.
Anyone can nominate a business, beginning today, at SacRepublicFC.com/SuncrestBank through March 5.
This region is rich with bold, brave and intrepid women who lead by example and embody the Indomitable spirit and they are essential to the health, wellbeing and success of our community and economy,” said Republic FC Controller and judging panelist Sarah Schubert. “Thanks to the support of Suncrest Bank and the advocacy efforts of the Sacramento Metro Chamber, we can highlight the issues women’s businesses face, provide some relief through grants, and use our platform to highlight the women using their business to impact our community every day.”
“We have been humbled by the public’s support for the Kickstart program and we are grateful for the opportunity to continue shining a light on some amazing businesses in the greater Sacramento region along with our partners at Republic FC and the Sacramento Metro Chamber,” said Suncrest Bank President and CEO Ciaran McMullan. “We intend to continue collaborating with the small business community and celebrating its diversity – not only because it is the right thing to do – but also, because inclusive and equitable recovery will create stronger and more resilient local economies for our region.”
In March, Republic FC and Suncrest Bank are collaborating with the Sacramento Metro Chamber President and CEO Amanda Blackwood who will serve as a member of the judging panel. The Sacramento Metro Chamber is the region’s largest business advocacy group, serving as the voice of the business community in the six-county Greater Sacramento region. Amanda is the first full-time female President and CEO in the organization’s 126-year history. She is one of the over 30 female chamber leaders in the region, guiding how business shapes and impacts the community.
“The generational gains of women-owned businesses and workforce have been devastated by the economic disruption created by the pandemic,” said Sacramento Metro Chamber President & CEO Amanda Blackwood. “A full economic recovery must focus on intentionally supporting women and minority owned businesses that have not historically been afforded the same resources and opportunities as others. Suncrest Bank and Republic FC have taken a great step forward to provide this support to local businesses. I am proud to be a part of this important work.”
The pandemic is creating economic catastrophes for women and minorities across the country. According to the National Women’s Law Center examination of Bureau of Labor Statistics data, over 2.3 million women have left the workforce since the beginning of the pandemic, with nearly 45% of the jobs lost (over 22.3 million) due to the crisis have not returned.
Examining data before the pandemic, a 2020 study ranking Sacramento 6th best in the country’s 50 biggest cities for working women, examines data including earnings gaps, rates of women-owned businesses and rates of female leadership and more.
Similar to Black- and Latinx-owned businesses, Women-owned organizations face similar challenges accessing resources, obtaining capital, and unique scenarios like market saturation, as well as restrictions resulting from public health orders.
Following the nominations window, voting will open on March 8 and run through the 15th. The top five businesses as selected by an open will have one final opportunity to make their case for the $5,000 grant and present to a panel of local leaders including Metro Chamber President & CEO Amanda Blackwood, Clutch & BOLD Speaker Series co-founder Anne Descalzo, KCRA’s Michelle Dapper, Suncrest Bank’s Elizabeth Zennadi and Republic FC Controller and CPA Sarah Schubert.
Throughout Women’s History Month, Republic FC will profile women making a difference in the region through sport, organizations that work to support girls and women, and highlight ways fans and the community can support Women-owned businesses in the region.
For more information, visit SacRepublicFC.com/SuncrestBank.
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