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Center for an Urban Future invites you to their webinar

Helping Brooklyn's Immigrant- and Minority-Owned Businesses Rebound from the Pandemic

About this webinar

From Brownsville and Bushwick to Sunset Park and Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn is home to a vibrant mix of immigrant- and minority-owned businesses. Roughly half of all Brooklyn businesses are owned by immigrants, and nearly one-third are minority-owned—including the largest number of Black-owned businesses of any borough. But despite major gains in recent years, these businesses have suffered stunning losses amid the COVID-19 pandemic. While some are pivoting quickly to survive, many others have been pushed to the brink, as revenues plunge and government relief remains difficult to access and often insufficient. At the same time, these businesses faced a number of growing challenges even before the crisis, which makes the road to recovery more uncertain.

This solutions-oriented discussion will delve into the specific challenges facing Brooklyn's immigrant- and minority-owned businesses and explore what can be done to help these entrepreneurs navigate the crisis and come back strong. The second in a three-part virtual forum series, the live-streamed discussion will examine what tools and strategies city and state policymakers, community and business leaders, and business owners and patrons can employ to boost this crucial anchor of the borough's economy.

Confirmed speakers include:

  • Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams
  • Senator Roxanne J. Persaud, New York State Senate
  • Aisha Benson, Executive Vice President, TruFund Financial Services
  • Sibté Hassan, Owner, BK Jani
  • Samara Karasyk, Chief Policy Officer & EVP, Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce
  • Jessie Lee, Managing Director, Renaissance EDC
  • Mary Makfinsky, Senior Vice President, National Sales Manager–Business Banking, HSBC
  • Carol Thomas, Owner, Just Because Salon

Hosted by

  • Guest speaker
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    Ray Johnson, HSBC .

  • Guest speaker
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    Samara Karasyk, Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce

  • Guest speaker
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    Mary Makfinsky, HSBC .

  • Guest speaker
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    Carol Thomas, Just Because Salon Owner @ Just Because Salon

  • Guest speaker
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    Sibté Hassan, BK Jani Owner @ BK Jani

  • Guest speaker
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    Jessie Lee, Renaissance EDC Managing Director

  • Guest speaker
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    Aisha Benson, TruFund Financial Services Executive Vice President @ TruFund Financial Services

  • Guest speaker
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    Senator Roxanne Persaud

  • Guest speaker
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    Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams

Center for an Urban Future

Center for an Urban Future is a catalyst for smart and sustainable policies that reduce inequality, increase economic mobility, and grow the economy in NYC.