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Volume 1                                                                                                                                                            June - July, 2010
 
In This Issue
Stephen Miller: An Artist with an Entrepreneurial Dream
Plan and Pitch 2010
Welcome Camille and Tawanda
Spotlight on Aarti!
Rising Tide Capital Uses MicroTest
Rising Tide Capital Entrepreneurs Showcased!
Upcoming CBA Orientations
Join Our Mailing List!
Get Involved
According to the Kauffman Foundation, there are over 550,000 new businesses launched every month in the US. Help us support more of these entrepreneurs to succeed by donating on our website, becoming a fan on Facebook or following us on Twitter.  
Sponsorship Opportunities
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Global Entrepreneurship Week (GEW) is coming November 15 - 21!  Last year, over 30 partners came together with 19 events that showcased our entrepreneurial spirit. Both local and national press covered our celebration, highlighting our local entrepreneurial culture to millions. This year, we want to make GEW even better! If you are interested in sponsoring the Week - contact us to learn more about this excellent opportunity to market your business.   
The Inspiration to Do More
Ei AlfaDuring a recent visit to the Kauffman Foundation for Entrepreneurship in Kansas City, I was amazed to learn that nearly 550,000 businesses are started every month in the United States. Each of those businesses has a unique story behind it.  Last month I heard 30 stories from competitors in Rising Tide Capital's Plan & Pitch 2010.  This intense, all-day marathon exercise helps Rising Tide Capital entrepreneurs improve their business pitches and gain advice from volunteer business coaches.
 
One entrepreneur, Stephen Miller, (see his profile below) arrived to the competition with a large covered object, leaving all of us wondering what it could be. The blanket came off revealing a truly unique creation - a clothes dresser/doll house.  Store your clothes on the inside - a miniature Jersey City brownstone on the outside.  Now that's a cool product!   
 
Have you ever had a moment when you hear an incredible musician perform or see an amazing painter at work and you hold your breath as you witness something truly unique and awe-inspiring? That's how it felt to behold Stephen's work. Knowing how hard he is struggling to take care of his family while trying to make his dream a reality, I was so proud to be counted amongst those investing in his dream. With not as many people spending in this tough economy, it will take sustained support, patience and capital to help Stephen to build his business.
 
Stephen, like other entrepreneurs in our community, will create such a huge impact when his business dream does come to life. His SJM Furniture wood workshop could bring an abandoned commercial space to life, give others jobs and the opportunity to learn valuable skills, and contribute to the return of a rich culture of local artisanship. Small businesses are the only way for many of our hard-hit communities and families to be able to lift themselves out of the economic despair of the past few years and rebuild.
 
What do the many entrepreneurs fighting for a dream and an opportunity need to get started and grow? How do we create and sustain new jobs - often in areas that are distressed with double-digit unemployment? How do we retain the small businesses that are hanging on the edge? At Rising Tide Capital, we have rolled up our sleeves and are finding innovative ways to help these entrepreneurs to help themselves. We are bringing entrepreneurs and those who support them together.
  
550,000 business start-ups is a big number.  You can start by supporting one, or ten, or thirty. Right here.  Right now.  Please join me with a commitment to make our programs possible to more entrepreneurs this coming Fall. Join us in our on-going effort to provide year-round support to entrepreneurs like Stephen Miller. Have ideas you want to share with us? Know someone you think we should meet? Email us and let us know.  These businesses and our organizations are all about relationships. We want to be in relationship with you so that you can be a part of transforming lives and communities. Visit our website right now while you have a moment, and make a difference today.

Thank you!
Alfa Demmellash
CEO of Rising Tide Capital
Stephen Miller: An Artist with an Entrepreneurial Dream
 
Stephen Miller and Alfa DemmellashWhether he's in New Jersey, New York, or even California, Rising Tide Capital entrepreneur Stephen J. Miller knows how to leave his mark, as the artistic qualities that he possesses are a rare quality. Using his experience in the worlds of fashion, design, architecture, and carpentry, Miller combines the four to produce beautiful work that anyone can truly appreciate.  His business, SJM Furniture, is a vehicle for selling his products, creating an awareness of his work, and building clientele.
 
The signature piece of his collection is his prized dollhouse-dresser which offers the full function of a dresser, and all the fun of a dollhouse. This piece created quite an impressive impact at the recent Plan & Pitch Competition 2010 amongst entrepreneurs, volunteers and even the Double Tree hotel staff. The inspiration for this piece came from Miller's own experience of living in the city. Large amounts of living space is hard to come by, he says, so alternative furniture solutions needed to be created. Read more
Plan & Pitch Competition 2010 an Unparalleled Success
 
Beatrice at Plan and Pitch
For the past two years, Rising Tide Capital (RTC) has worked with volunteers from Goldman Sachs' Community TeamWorks, to assist graduates of the Community Business Academy (CBA) with strengthening their business plans and pitches. On June 19, 2010, this initiative was expanded into Plan & Pitch Competition 2010, which brought 30 entrepreneurs and 30 corporate volunteers together- double the size of prior workshops in which 15 volunteers would usually participate.
 
The participants worked in small groups, larger groups, and in one-on-one settings in an all day business seminar at the Double Tree Hotel in Jersey City. The day ended with an actual elevator pitch competition, as the participating entrepreneurs presented their new and improved pitches in an attempt to win one of three micro business grants worth up to $1500. 
Read more
Welcome Camille and Tawanda!
The Rising Tide Capital (RTC) team is continuing to grow to meet the increasing need for services in the community. During the month of July, Rising Tide Capital (RTC) welcomed two new staff members to the organization, Camille Parker and Tawanda Taylor. Parker steps in as Development Associate & Executive Assistant, while Taylor takes on the role of Finance & Administrative Assistant.
Tawanda TaylorCamille Parker
 
Read the full article here.
Spotlight on Aarti!
 
Aarti Jaisinghani
 Aarti Jaisinghani is a volunteer who knows that no job is too big or small for her to handle at Rising Tide Capital. As a volunteer, Aarti's tasks vary from day to day; however, she is consistently doing whatever is needed of her. A graduate from Barnard College, Columbia University, the Mumbai, India native majored in Economics and Mathematics, and has a growing passion for microfinance. Upon graduation, Aarti worked for an investment bank in the fixed income division.  She also was a junior fixed income and currency trader for two hedge funds. In November 2009, she joined the Microfinance Club of NY, and after hearing COO Alex Forrester speak about microfinance and the long-lasting, deliverable results that RTC provides, she reached out to the organization and has become an important part of the team since.
 
"Aarti has really been a great resource with the MicroTest/Client Outcomes Survey project," said Farah Omer, Director of Program Evaluation and General Administration. "She's been really available, and very responsible. She takes the project very seriously, and has been leading our team of volunteers in a very focused way to ensure that we complete this project. I have no idea how we could have done this without her."
 
If you would like to volunteer at Rising Tide Capital, click
here!
Rising Tide Capital Uses MicroTest for the First Time
Rising Tide Capital (RTC) is using industry-standard MicroTest for the first time in the organization's history. This will enable the organization to evaluate its programs and their impact on the entrepreneurs it serves.
MicroTest, a two-part management tool that measures microenterprise program performance and the changes clients have undergone since initially enrolling in an organization's programs, is an initiative of the Microenterprise Fund for Innovation, Effectiveness, Learning and Dissemination (FIELD).
For the full article, click here.
Rising Tide Capital Businesses Showcased at 2nd Annual Made in Jersey City Day
 
Betty Grant Made in JCFour Rising Tide Capital (RTC) entrepreneurs were honored at the 2nd annual Made in Jersey City Day event, held at City Hall on June 16, 2010 at 11:00a.m. The event showcased small businesses that operate in Jersey City, which, according to Mayor Jerramiah T. Healy, are "are the backbone of Jersey City." RTC entrepreneurs represented more than half of the businesses on display.
 
The RTC entrepreneurs who shared their products with the residents of Jersey City  were Bernice Bell of Innovative 5 Designs, Betty Grant of The Gran-Tea Company,  Kandice Odom of Simmy's Stitches, and Tiffany Perry of Body Caf´┐Ż.  Read more 
Upcoming CBA Orientations
 
There will be three upcoming orientations for the fall session of the Community Business Academy (CBA), which is scheduled to begin in early September:

-  Monday July 26th, 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at Grace Church Van Vorst, 39 Erie Street at 2nd Street, Jersey City, located two blocks from the Grove St. Path station.
 
-  Monday August 16, 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at the Hoboken Business Center, 50 Harrison, Hoboken, located three blocks from the 2nd Street Hudson Bergen Light Rail station. 
 
To RSVP contact Roger at [email protected].