NAWBO Chicago - Chicago Connects | NAWBO

NAWBO Chicago - Chicago Connects

Tuesday, October 20, 2020 - 8:30am10:00am
Registration Deadline: 
October 19, 2020 - 2:00pm

Upping Your Marketing Game with a WBE Certification

Have you been wondering about Certification but not sure if it is right for you? Do you know the different types of certification and which is worth pursuing? Are you wondering what opportunities await you?

Join us for a discussion to find out:

  • Advantages of being certified as a woman business owner
  • Different certifying organizations and what they can offer you
  • Why certification is important and valuable to corporations and government
  • How to determine if it's right for your business


Marcy Fortnow - Engaging Play


Irene Caminer - Caminer Law

Mary Davenport - TransTech IT Staffing

Karen Goldner – WBDC

Mary Lawrence – Richards Graphics





About The Panelists

Irene Caminer - Caminer Law - Irene Caminer formed Caminer Law, LLC in 2018.   Irene brings her government experience to her practice by counseling, advising, and assisting individual, corporate, not-for-profit and government clients on a variety of matters, including navigating municipal and utility matters, M/W/DBE certifications, licenses, permits and estate planning.  Prior to starting her own law firm, Irene served 20 years at the Chicago Department of Water Management as its legal counsel.  She has lived in the City her entire adult life and enjoys the outdoors, reading, spending time with family and volunteering.

Mary Davenport - TransTech IT Staffing - Mary has been the Owner and Chief Executive Officer of TransTech IT Staffing for 18 years. We’ve seen tremendous growth over the years and have added many elite clientele to our portfolio.

Over the years Mary has served on the local and national boards of TechServe Alliance, a national association of staffing firms that serves over 500 member businesses in the IT Staffing industry.

Mary is a strong advocate for all diversity businesses and ensures that when possible, TransTech engages other diversity firms. TransTech has been a financial supporter of the i.c. Stars internship program for many years.   Mary also serves on the certification committee for the WBDC in Chicago. 

TransTech has been awarded one of The Best Places to Work in Illinois (#5!) and is a Best and Brightest Company.

Karen Goldner – WBDC - Karen Goldner is Managing Director of Established Business Services at the Women’s Business Development Center. She leads the WBDC’s established business practice, providing counseling to established businesses including certified Women Business Enterprises (WBEs), as well as startup and emerging entrepreneurs.

Her passion is helping entrepreneurs reach their dreams.

Karen has spent twenty years working with, in and for small businesses. She has worked in for-profit and non-profit early stage investment organizations, including creating and managing the first for-profit technology-focused angel fund in Northeast Indiana, and supporting the creation of a statewide innovation system in Indiana. Karen served as Interim President of a $6 million defense manufacturer that was owned by her investors. Prior to that, she managed a community development loan program for the City of Fort Wayne, and served as Fort Wayne’s Director of Economic Development. 

Karen earned her Master of Public Affairs from Indiana University’s School of Public and Environmental Affairs, and her Bachelor of Arts at the University of Nebraska.

Mary Lawrence – Richards Graphics - Mary Lawrence joined Richards Graphic Communications in 1990. She received an undergraduate degree in economics from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She also attended Rochester Institute of Technology for technical and management print training.  

Following in the footsteps of her grandmother, she is the second woman in the family to run the
business. Today, working alongside her brothers, nephews and sister-in-law, the 95-year-old company is an industry leader in offering web-to-print portals, digital printing, direct mail and logistics.

Mary is Board Chair of Magdalene House Chicago, a home and enterprise for positive, personal
change in Chicago’s anti-sex trafficking industry. She is also Treasurer of the Great Lakes Graphic Association. Last month, she received the Daily Herald Business Ledger Award for Regional Spirit. She lives in Burr Ridge with her husband, Jim, and has two grown children.

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