Nominations For The Black Enterprise Small Business Awards And The Entrepreneurs Conference Elevator Pitch Are Now Open

NEW YORK, Feb. 20, 2014  — BLACK ENTERPRISE will hold its 2014 Entrepreneurs Conference + Expo hosted by Nationwide Insurance on Wednesday, May 14 through Saturday, May 17, at the Hyatt Regency Columbus in Columbus, Ohio, with a powerhouse line-up of some of the nation’s most accomplished and celebrated entrepreneurs. Nominations and call for entries are now open for two of the most highly anticipated featured events of the conference, the Black Enterprise Small Business Awards and the Entrepreneurs Conference Elevator Pitch Competition, respectively.

The Black Enterprise Small Business Awards annually provides special recognition to African American entrepreneurs who embody the Black Enterprise entrepreneurial spirit. The company seeks to honor companies and individuals who are bringing new products to the forefront, redefining sales strategies, and discovering new and profitable markets. Nominations are being solicited for awards in the following categories:

  • Innovator of the Year -This award is given to the business flourishing in an innovative industry or those approaching business/entrepreneurship in a groundbreaking manner via their products and/or services.
  • Family Business of the Year -This award is presented to a family-operated business that exemplifies the combined experience and expertise needed to excel in a key industry.
  • Franchise Owner of the Year – This award is presented to a franchisee for outstanding performance and overall contribution in enhancing the growth and development of the franchising industry.
  • Teenpreneur of the Year – This award recognizes entrepreneurs, age 19 or under, committed to the tradition of black business achievement.

All entries and nominations for the Black Enterprise Small Business Awards must be received by March 31, 2014. To enter and for nomination requirements, visit and click “Awards.”

Winners will be announced at a special awards luncheon May 15, 2014 at the Black Enterprise Entrepreneurs Conference. TDJ Enterprises’ CEO T.D. Jakes will serve as the featured headliner at the Black Enterprise Small Business Awards Luncheon. Jakes will also hold a major book signing event for his highly anticipated book Instinct: The Power to Unleash Your Unborn Drive, in the Deal Makers Expo.

Entries are also being solicited for the 2014 Entrepreneurs Conference Elevator Pitch Competition. Black Enterprise is soliciting video submissions of business pitches from entrepreneurs across the nation. Those pitches will be evaluated by a panel of Black Enterprise small business content leaders to identify finalists. The top 10 finalists will be invited to the Entrepreneurs Conference + Expo to pitch their idea to judges and a live audience for a chance to win $10,000.  All Elevator Pitch Competition entries must be received by video submissions by March 31, 2014. To enter, and for official contest and on-site competition rules, go to and click “Elevator Pitch.”

“Each year the Black Enterprise Entrepreneurs Conference recognizes some of the best, brightest and most innovative small business owners in America,” says Black Enterprise SVP/Editor-in-Chief Derek T. Dingle. “We look forward to celebrating and investing in the success of this year’s nominees and winners, while also presenting them as models for other entrepreneurs and aspiring business owners to emulate across all of Black Enterprise’s media platforms.”

This marks the second year that the three-day power conference, which annually brings together more than 1,200 of the country’s leading entrepreneurs and corporate executives, will be held in Columbus. The Black Enterprise Entrepreneurs Conference + Expo (BEEC) is designed to provide attendees with the latest and most innovative strategies from today’s top business minds. The conference will also provide high-powered networking opportunities that are critical to attendees’ efforts to take their businesses from successful launch to growth and profitability. Business owners and aspiring entrepreneurs will gain insight about business plan development and start-up planning as well as tactical growth and investment strategies.

The conference will take place in the heart of downtown Columbus located in close proximity to a wide variety of locally owned eateries, theaters, and retail shops. The Columbus Convention Center, which will host the Deal Makers Expo, is situated in the center of the city’s Discovery District, Short North Arts District, Arena District and the historic African-American neighborhood, the King-Lincoln district.

For updates, follow BLACK ENTERPRISE Entrepreneurs Conference page on Facebook and search the #BEEC2014 hash tag on Twitter.

About Nationwide
Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company, based in Columbus, Ohio, is one of the largest and strongest diversified insurance and financial services organizations in the U.S. and is rated A+ by both A.M. Best and Standard & Poor’s. The company provides customers a full range of insurance and financial services, including auto insurance, motorcycle, boat, homeowners, pet, life insurance, farm, commercial insurance, annuities, mortgages, mutual funds, pensions, long-term savings plans and specialty health services. For more information, is the leading website for Money, Small Business and Career development. Providing executive and entrepreneurial resources, information, and profiles on the topics of money management, employment, career and start-up development, features expert resource articles, original video packages, and blogs, customized to empower its niche audience while consistently providing universal resource-value.

black enterpriseyour ultimate source to build Wealth for Life, is the premier business, investing, and wealth-building resource for African Americans. Since 1970, be has provided essential business information and advice to professionals, corporate executives, entrepreneurs, and decision makers. Every month, black enterprisemagazine provides 4 million readers with information on entrepreneurship, careers, and financial management. A multimedia company, be also produces television programming, business and lifestyle events, Web content, and digital media. Visit for more information.


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About Kerline K. Jules (686 Articles)
A native of Miami, Florida, Kerline Jules is one of South Florida’s leading young professionals and community leaders invested in public service and passionate about elevating the message of social and economic empowerment. Kerline believes a legacy of good intentions is no legacy at all; her very focus is on making sure that her life’s work makes an impact.

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