Woman Entrepreneur Fellowship

With our focus on advancing the wellbeing of women, the Junior League of New Orleans believes that increasing women’s business opportunities improves the local economy. One way to cultivate entrepreneurial success is access to mentors and advisors. JLNO’s membership includes a diverse, professional cadre that can motivate and guide women wishing to scale their businesses. Combining our mission tenets of developing the potential of women and improving communities, JLNO has created the Woman Entrepreneur (WE) Fellowship. This yearlong program will support a female business owner with mentoring and in-kind services sourced through JLNO’s membership. Guidance will include

  • Legal / Human Resources
  • Accounting / Financial Analysis
  • Investor Development
  • Marketing / Communications
  • Management / Organizational Consulting

Collaboration with the WE Fellow will determine focused goals within these broad areas for a plan addressing her business’s specific needs. The WE Fellowship also provides a $2500 grant, access to work/meeting space, nonprofit board training, and marketing opportunities with JLNO’s membership.


Eligibility

  • The business-owner should be a woman who is
    • The majority stakeholder in the enterprise and functions as its daily manager
    • Aged 21 years and older
    • A legal resident of the United States
  • The business can be in any industry and should
    • Have been formed under U.S. law and is currently operating within 40 miles of New Orleans, Louisiana
    • Have between 1 and 5 years of continuous operations
    • Be generating annual revenues of less than $500,000
    • Have a documented business plan
  • The following are not eligible:
    • Nonprofit organizations
    • Subsidiary or franchise businesses

The WE Fellow should represent the same personal and professional commitments as the Junior League, namely it embraces diversity and reaches out to all women who demonstrate an interest in improving their community.


Application Process & Timeline

The WE Fellow is selected via is a multi-step process as indicated below.

Step 1 – Attend the Application Info Session.

While not required, we recommend that every woman-owned business interested in the WE Fellowship attend the Application Info Session at 6:30 pm on Wednesday, January 11, 2017.

Step 2 – Complete the WE Fellowship application.

If interested, female business owners must submit an application by 11:59 pm on Friday, February 3, 2017.  Please note that you will not be able to save the application and come back to it. The application period is closed.

Step 3 – Present at PitchNOLA event during New Orleans Entreprenuer Week.

The WE Fellowship Selection Committee will review the submitted applications and select up to five women-owned businesses to give a 10-minute presentation at the PitchNOLA event during New Orleans Entrepreneur Week.  Prior to their pitch, they will meet with an expert who will help them craft their presentation. The PitchNOLA event will be Monday, March 20, 2017 from 9 to11 am at the Contemporary Arts Center. Click here to RSVP to attend.

The five WE Fellowship finalists for 2017 are:

  • Kismet Cosmetics is a beauty brand that manufactures affordable cosmetics in on-trend colors.
  • Passion Lilie brings fair trade and eco-friendly materials to fashion through the company’s apparel and accessories lines.
  • The Puddin’ Shop specializes in single serving bread puddings in creative and innovative flavors.
  • Saint Hugh is a hunting and outdoor leisure apparel company that seeks to change how people picture hunters by making field apparel for women.
  • Two Girls One Shuck delivers a travelling oyster bar to a party near you.

Votes from the public will secure an audience prize of accounting services from LaPorte CPAs and Business Advisors, and a judging panel will award the fellowship.


Fellowship Components

  • Mentoring and support services from Junior League of New Orleans Members
  • Grant in the amount of $2500
  • Technology budget of $2500
  • Work and meeting space in Uptown New Orleans (please note this cannot be used as retail space)
  • Tuition to JLNO’s Get on Board nonprofit board training program (a $250 value)
  • Feature in Lagniappe, JLNO’s quarterly magazine to 5000 readers
  • Opportunities to market to JLNO members