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New program to boost Buffalo’s Kensington-Bailey business district

By Jacqueline Ghosen

Release Date: March 14, 2014

BUFFALO, N.Y. — A new program will benefit entrepreneurs in Buffalo’s Kensington-Bailey business district, thanks to a $75,000 grant from the Allstate Foundation and a partnership between the University at Buffalo School of Management’s Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership (CEL), the Bailey Avenue Business Association and UB’s Office of Government and Community Relations.

Entrepreneurs enrolled in the Allstate Entrepreneur Support program will benefit from seminars, networking, mentoring and additional resources to help grow their businesses. The group will meet select Wednesdays from March through July at the Gerard Place education building — at the heart of the district where their businesses are located.

The program is modeled after the successful Allstate Minority and Women Emerging Entrepreneurs program (MWEE), a joint venture with the CEL and UB’s Center for Urban Studies. CEL has run the program since 2004, and The Allstate Foundation has funded it since 2005.

However, instead of having business owners come to the CEL, as they do for the MWEE program, the new pilot program brings the meetings into the community. In addition to the added convenience, the program will help create a support network between neighboring businesses to create a larger impact in the area.

The Kensington-Bailey business district includes more than 150 businesses spanning Bailey Avenue from Winspear Avenue to Genesee Street. Any individual with a business along this corridor is welcome to become a member of the Bailey Avenue Business Association, which also gives participants a discounted tuition rate for the Allstate program.

This year’s Allstate Entrepreneur Support program participants include:

  • Sheila Clemcy, owner of Crowns of Glory;
  • Civic Davis, owner of New Style Records;
  • Paul and Linda Diamond, owners of Bailey’s Furniture;
  • Pearl Hammond, owner of West African International;
  • Damone Henderson, owner of Barber Business;
  • Brian Lewis, owner of Zion’s Beauties;
  • Hyacinth Patterson, owner of Caribbean Experience;
  • Darrell Shepherd, owner of Shepherd’s Liquor; and
  • Annette Watts, owner of Ann Rhod’s Tailoring.

The Allstate Foundation, a charitable organization funded by subsidiaries of Allstate Insurance Corp., provides philanthropic grants to nonprofit organizations. With a focus on teen safe driving and building financial independence for domestic violence survivors, The Allstate Foundation also promotes safe and vital communities; tolerance, inclusion, and diversity; and economic empowerment.

Established in 1987, the CEL provides participants with individualized and interactive education in entrepreneurship. More than 900 CEL alumni employ more than 22,000 Western New Yorkers, and their businesses are worth more than $2 billion to the local economy. For more information, visit mgt.buffalo.edu/cel.

The UB School of Management is recognized for its emphasis on real-world learning, community and economic impact, and the global perspective of its faculty, students and alumni. The school also has been ranked by Bloomberg Businessweek, the Financial Times, Forbes and U.S. News & World Report for the quality of its programs and the return on investment it provides its graduates. For more information about the UB School of Management, visit mgt.buffalo.edu.

Media Contact Information

Jacqueline Ghosen
Assistant Dean and Director of Communications
School of Management
Tel: 716-645-2833
ghosen@buffalo.edu