The AACC Newsletter

June 2013 Edition

AACC Board of Directors

{Executive Committee}


Shalimar Blakely

Executive Director 


Steven Scott Bradley



Harold T. Epps

Senior Advisor


Bilal Qayyum

Vice Chair 


Ouida Simpson



 Alonzo J. Primus



Alex King

Search Committee Chair


Lowell Thomas, Esq. 

General Counsel   


Megan R. Smith 

Public Relations Chair

Special Thanks
city of phila



New Logo Comcast

State Farm

citizes logo

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Small Business Series 2
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A Message from the Executive Director
Shalimar blakely  
I'm a fan of Esquire Magazine. 
I know, I know, it's a magazine that caters to the male audience, but I purchased it a while ago during one of my read-outside-the-box moments, and I've been hooked ever since. 
The May 2013 issue gave me yet another reason to love the magazine. It included a "2013 Guide to Fortune and Fulfillment," which, featured a section on how to be gracious, and why.
As Tom Chiarella, author of, well, How to be Gracious, and Why, stated, "In business, the little things - a favor acknowledged, a favor returned, proper introductions" are also important in business. "The return comes in kind." 
In reading the article, I realized that this idea of being gracious was much like my purchase of Esquire Magazine - outside the box. It takes a lot more than understanding the balance sheet to succeed in business. It's being genuine, building relationships and making a difference.
As the African-American Chamber of Commerce of PA, NJ and DE (AACC) continues to serve as a resource for African American businesses, we too are thinking outside the box, especially when it comes to collaborations, and helping to improve the economic development of African American communities.

In the coming months, you will see the AACC continue to provide information that will help businesses grow. In addition, you will see more partnerships with companies across industries, so we can have a greater impact on common goals. 

So far, it's been wonderful connecting with businesses across the region and meeting so many bright, innovative and passionate business owners. I'm looking forward to meeting many more in the coming months! 

Until then,

Shalimar Blakely, Executive Director
African-American Chamber of Commerce of PA, NJ and DE
Membership Spotlight



Congratulations to the following AACC members who were accepted into the first cohort of the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Business Program!
  • Steven Scott Bradley of Bradley & Bradley Associates, Inc.
  • Alex King of Defined Clarity
  • Ola O. Solanke of The Arts Garage  

Learn more about the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Business program and partnering organizations by attending the following sessions: 


10KSB Education and Access to Capital Information Sessions

10:00 AM - 11:30 AM and

3:00 PM - 4:30 PM

Tuesday, June 11

1500 Market Street, Suite 2600 West

Philadelphia, PA 19102

Get details about the 11-week business education training curriculum (the mini-MBA), business support services, and access to capital loan fund. Sign up today to attend these workshops in the series, Small Business Positioning For Growth.  Hosted by the Philadelphia Industrial Development Corporation.  

RSVP with Chamor Hollinger at 215-496-8157 orchollinger@pidc-pa.org


Workshop #2 - Underwriting

Thursday, June 27, 2013, 4:00 PM - 6:00 PM

Learn what PIDC and most lenders are requiring, the documents they review, and the standards that are applied in consideration of your loan request.  This workshop will help small business owners plan their company projects and how to present their financing request to PIDC to get the "yes" on a loan approval.   These workshops are designed for companies that have been operating at least two years.

To reserve your place, send an email to


No phone calls please.
Advocacy Efforts to Watch

Use & Occupancy Tax is Back on the Table


The African-American Chamber of Commerce of PA, NJ and DE (AACC) has been advocating hard against Bill 130161, the proposed 20 percent Use & Occupancy tax increase to raise money for the School District. While the AACC is a committed to ensuring students obtain a quality education, the organization is adamant about working with the City Council to find other ways that will not impact business development in the city. The AACC is taking a strong position to keep businesses in this city, so students have access to employment opportunities once they graduate.


Learn more by reading this Op Ed  published in the Inquirer. 



Women on Boards Legislation Moves Out of Committee


In an effort to increase the number of women serving on Corporate Boards, Councilwoman Blondell Reynolds-Brown introduced Bill No. 130177, which seeks to  require contractors seeking to do business with the City to disclose the number of women serving in executive positions and serving on their executive and full boards; all under certain terms and conditions.


The Women on Boards Bill passed out of the Committee on Commerce & Economic Development and a full vote is expected by the end of the month.


To ensure that we can present a high caliber of women who are qualified to serve to corporate boards, the AACC has developed the PECO Power Lunch Series. Women of all professional levels are encouraged to register.

Articles and News You Could Use


Philadelphia Social Enterprise Partnerships


Businesses and nonprofits are finding new ways to work together to solve social problems and Bloomberg Philanthropies is inspired by the opportunity to find and spread innovative local solutions to national problems. This year, Philadelphia was named one of the five winners in the Bloomberg Philanthropies' Mayors Challenge, a competition to inspire American cities to generate innovative ideas that solve major challenges and improve city life - and that ultimately can be shared with other cities to improve the well-being of the nation. 

4 Ways Staffing Firms Can Help Your Company  now hiring


 Each day, over three million people in the U.S. alone are working through a staffing company. A Gallop Poll survey showed that 90% of companies in Northern America use staffing services to hire temporary and permanent staff and there are many reasons to contract with professional staffing services.


2013 National Urban League Conference
Redeem the Dream: Jobs Rebuild America



The 2013 National Urban League Conference, Redeem the Dream: Jobs Rebuild America, celebrating the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington is coming to Philly! From July 24 to July 27, 2013, Philadelphia will welcome over 5,000 newsmakers, policy makers, business and community leaders, and Urban Leaguers for the 2013 National Urban League Conference presented by Comcast, Aramark, Independence Blue Cross, and AmeriHealth Mercy! Held at the Pennsylvania Convention Center, the Conference will feature four (4) days of exciting workshops and sessions, and numerous opportunities for professional development and key connections to be made. You can REGISTER TODAY to experience the entire conference!  Along with cultural events, private receptions and entertainment, the Conference boasts a line up of FREE events for the community, including:

  • A Career & Networking Fair
  • A College Fair with colleges, universities, and scholarship organizations
  • An Expo Hall with 100+ exhibitors, a Health Zone, a Volunteer Zone with on-site projects, and an Empowerment Stage with celebrity filled sessions and local entertainment
  • The one-day Small Business Matters Entrepreneurship Summit
  • A Youth Town Hall featuring special celebrity appearances
  • And a keynote address from National Urban League President, Marc Morial

With free events providing the tools necessary for individuals to live their best life - from entrepreneurship and business development, to scholarships, volunteerism, and health and wellness - these events will benefit individuals living and working in Philadelphia/Delaware Valley region, and beyond! To learn how you can be involved in this year's National Urban League Conference, visit www.conf2013.iamempowered.com, follow the National Urban League on Twitter and 'like' us on Facebook!

The AACC Welcomes 
the Following New Members!


Parx Casino

Phila. Regional Port Authority

MACCS Health Services, LLC

Citizens Bank

Mercy Douglass Human Services

The Arts Garage

Capital Recovery Services

Express Employment Professionals

Mack Duncan

Carolyn Moseley

Alex Peay

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