May 18, 2020 — DENTON — The Center for Women Entrepreneurs at Texas Woman’s University has awarded $1 million in grants to women-owned small businesses in Texas that suffered financial losses associated with the coronavirus pandemic.
The $10,000 AssistHER grants were awarded this month to 100 businesses across the state and are being used for operating expenses, technology upgrades and for help adapting to new business models. Business owners had to demonstrate that they were adversely impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic to be eligible for the grants.
Funding for the grants came from the Center for Women Entrepreneurs at Texas Woman’s University and the program was developed by the center’s director, Shannon Mantaro, and the executive team at TWU’s Jane Nelson Institute for Women’s Leadership, headed by Mary Anne Alhadeff.
More than 5,000 women business owners applied for the grants beginning in late March, and a committee of individuals chosen by the Center for Women Entrepreneurs selected the 100 award recipients. Among the awardees is Laredo restaurant owner Mitzi Bella, who is using her grant to restock inventory.
“While we wished we could help all women-owned businesses in Texas, we are glad we were able to make a difference to many,” Mantaro said. “Through this challenging time, the Center for Women Entrepreneurs is here and will continue to assist women-owned businesses as we all move together toward a new normal.”
About the Jane Nelson Institute for Women’s Leadership
The Jane Nelson Institute for Women’s Leadership at Texas Woman’s University is dedicated to preparing more women to take on successful roles in business and public service. Through the institute’s three specialized centers — Center for Student Leadership, Center for Women Entrepreneurs and Center for Women in Politics & Public Policy — the institute ensures women have the education to establish careers as successful C-suite executives, the skills for building entrepreneurial businesses and the framework needed to run for public office.