Articles

Columbus Ranked in Best Cities for Women in Business List

In a recent article in Forbes, Columbus was ranked the 18th best city in the US for women in business. Read more here...

Support S.2172 Fairness in Women-Owned Small Business Contracting Act of 2012

NAWBO partner organization WIPP (Women Influencing Public Policy) has issued its support for Senate Bill 2172 otherwise known as the Fairness in Women-Owned Small Business Contracting Act of 2012. WIP states:

"Two major obstacles are currently hindering the success of the Women Owned Small Business (WOSB) Federal Procurement Program:

"One, the dollar limit on contract awards of $4 and 6.5 million results in a number of opportunities being pulled back because they exceed the dollar limit, and

"Two, the requirement to find two women owned businesses who can qualify for the work is cumbersome and puts the WOSB program on unequal footing with other small business procurement programs.

"This bill will not only assist the federal government to meet its 5% goal for contracting with women-owned businesses but also allow successful women-owned companies to continue to grow their business and compete for larger contracts."  Learn more about the bill...

Please contact your senator and give him your opinion of the bill!

Sherrod Brown
(202) 224-2315
www.brown.senate.gov/contact/

Rob Portman
(202) 224-3353
http://www.portman.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/contact?p=contact-form

Do Women Run This Town? (From WIPP & Key4Women)

(This article was written for Key4Women by Ann Sullivan of WIPP Government Relations. NAWBO Columbus is proud to have KeyBank as a platinum coporate partner and WIPP as a national partner.)

Do Women Run This Town?

First some facts: there are 17 women in the US Senate and 73 women serving in the US House. That's 17% of the Senators and 16% of the House. Yet, according to the President's numbers, women make up more than half of the workforce and 60% of those earning a bachelor's degree were women.

Perhaps the story that matches this low number of women in the Congress most is the percentage of women who are executives in Fortune 500 companies and hold board seats in those companies. According to Catalyst, only 14% of these executives were women. Women hold only 16% of the board seats of Fortune 500 companies. Contrast that with women business owners. Women–owned businesses make up over 1/3 of all businesses in the country. Yet only a small number of those businesses have revenues over $1 million.

These statistics point to the fact that while we represent the workforce in equal numbers to men, women do not hold the same positions. While we represent roughly 50% of the voters, we are woefully underrepresented in Congress. There are some clues about why this is the case. A study done by Women's Campaign Forum Foundation shows that compared to men, only 31% of women make political contributions. Only 35% of women's contributions went to female Congressional candidates. The effect of the lack of giving, according to WCF Foundation, is that women who are running struggle to match their male counterparts' fundraising numbers. And in this environment, it is not possible to win unless the candidate has adequate financial resources to run.

Yet when it comes to issues important to women, the women in Congress are always the ones to step up to the plate. Who is leading the charge to change the Women Owned Small Business Federal Contracts Program? The women in the Senate and the women in the House. Who is championing an extension of the tax deductions important to women business owners? Senator Olympia Snowe and fourteen women in the Senate. Access to capital for small businesses? Senator Mary Landrieu is the champion. Who champions funding for Women Business Centers? Congresswoman Jo Ann Emerson.

Let's just imagine that many more women were elected to Congress. Would the Congress change? One change for sure would be the amount of women testifying before Congress. Women Impacting Public Policy's analysis of the hearings held in the last year in the House and Senate shows that 20% of all hearings with private sector witnesses had no women testifying. If they don't hear from us, I'm pretty sure decisions are being made without us. Would the partisan atmosphere change? A little known fact is that all the women in the Senate make an effort to go to dinner — Republicans and Democrats. I don't know about you, but it's pretty hard to call someone names that you have dinner with. It seems to me that many more women would move their families to Washington, if elected. That would dramatically change the atmosphere. When your kids play soccer with someone else's kids, it's a little tough to be hostile. In order to change the dynamic in Washington, we have to support women who are running for public office. Do women run this town? Not yet. If we all band together, the possibilities are endless.

Learn more about WIPP at wipp.org