2023 HNB Program Update

By December 31, 2023Program News

Before updating you on the Habitat for Neighborhood Business program at Saint Louis University (HNB-SLU) during 2023, we must share very exciting news. One of our HNB-SLU entrepreneurs, Lavinia McCoy, owner and chef at Gourmet Soul, during Covid successfully pivoted from a catering company by expanding to include a restaurant with carry-out AND in a recent 10-minute segment of Good Morning America was voted “The Best Soul Food in America”.

HNB entrepreneur Monica Butler, owner of the Butler Group, received in 2023 a Presidential Lifetime Achievement Award from President Joe Biden and an honorary doctorate from Harvest Christian University.

HNB entrepreneur Jeanetta Hawkins, owner of Personal Touches by Jeanetta, recently was awarded the Community Collaborators Neighborhood Transformation Award from Saint Louis Mayor Tishaura O. Jones.

During 2023 our entrepreneurs and programs continue to grow:

The third HNB Mentor Forum will soon be formed, and plans are in place for the fourth HNB Mentor Forum.

The Steve N. Frank Family Fund was created by Mary Frank and her children to ensure the growth for HNB’s collaboration with our Service Leadership student program, including the addition of a second, level two course.

HNB is developing an online and an in-classroom course on the Business Model Canvas. The first in-classroom course will be taught in November 2023 in collaboration with SLU’s Center for Entrepreneurship. The online Business Model Canvas course is being developed in collaboration with the Emerson Leadership Institute in the Chaifetz School of Business and the SLU graduate students in the Global Grad Scholars Program.

HNB continues to benefit from the service of six volunteer students, undergraduate and graduate students, who staff various administrative functions.

SLU recarpeted and painted our offices, very pretty…. you’re welcome to visit!

Other newsworthy events during 2023 include:

Gladys Smith, Program Director, will be retiring following a transition for our new Program Manager, Pamela Hoskins. Dean Gupta, HNB Executive Director Linda Jones, Tom Stern, and our 50 entrepreneurs will attest to how impactful Gladys has been in HNB’s growth, not to mention her extraordinary support for our entrepreneurs during Covid. Gladys, thank you!

As we say each year, our HNB team and hard working entrepreneurs are grateful for your support and strive every day to succeed at “trading a job for a career” while making their neighborhood a safer and better place to live and to raise a family. We wish you and your family a joyous, healthy holiday season and all good things in 2024!