Sorry, you need to enable JavaScript to visit this website.


Health Benefit Exchange Authority

DC Agency Top Menu

-A +A
Bookmark and Share

DC Health Link Continues to “POWERUP” DC Small Businesses Amid COVID-19 Pandemic

Friday, June 26, 2020
5th Annual Small Business Forum, designed to celebrate and support the small business community, goes virtual in 2020


DC Health Link in partnership with the Washington Business Journal, the Washington Informer, DC Chamber of Commerce, Greater Washington Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, the Restaurant Association of Metropolitan Washington, and the POWERUP DC Small Business Brain Trust partners are hosting POWERUPDC 2020, a virtual small business forum.

The 5th Annual POWERUP DC National Small Business Forum—“A New Era – Resilience and Opportunity”—will focus on how small businesses can adapt and succeed amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The format of the virtual session is designed to provide small businesses, women-owned businesses, non-profits and young entrepreneurs with information, tools, tips, and opportunities to be resilient as they re-imagine and innovate ways of doing business in a new era. Opportunities to support the revitalization and stability of small businesses through COVID-19 will also be shared along with updates on DC Health Link’s response to COVID-19, including working with DC small businesses to ensure their employees get covered and stay covered during the pandemic.

DC Health Benefit Exchange Authority Executive Director Mila Kofman will provide opening and closing remarks for the forum and will moderate the opening session.

The speaker lineup includes distinguished business leaders:

  • John Falcicchio, Interim Deputy Mayor, Planning and Economic Development (DMPED)
  • Karima Woods, Acting Commissioner, DC Department of Insurance, Securities and Banking (DISB)
  • Kristi Whitfield, Director, DC Department of Small and Local Business Development
  • Antonio Doss, Director, U.S. Small Business Administration, Washington Metropolitan Area District Office
  • Liz Sara, Chairwoman, National Women’s Business Council
  • Margo Dorfman, CEO, US Women’s Chamber of Commerce
  • Rosie Allen-Herring, CEO and President, United Way National Capital Area
  • Andrea H. Evans, Intellectual Property Attorney, Andrea Hence Evans, LLC
  • Necola Y. Shaw, M.C.A., AASBC, Business Consultant, District of Columbia Small Business Development Center

A Youth Entrepreneurs Panel designed to provide young people with tips and resources to turn a business concept into a reality will feature Nya and Zuri Byers—ages 11 and 6 respectively—who started Hunnybunny Boutique, an all-natural bath and beauty products company, and Gabrielle Jordan, 20, who is the owner and founder of Jewelz of Jordan, a luxury jewelry business she started when she was 9 years old.

Local businesses owners who will share their inspiring COVID-19 resiliency stories include, Stacie Lee Banks, President/Co-Owner, Lee’s Flowers and Card Shop; Paola Moya, CEO and Founder, Moya Design Partners; Patrick Flynn, Founder, Patrick’s Pet Care; Denise Rolark Barnes, Publisher, Washington Informer Newspaper; and Vida Ali, President, Ben’s Chili Bowl Foundation.


Tuesday, June 30, 2020, 10 am—11:30 am

FREE Registration (Zoom Platform)

To register for POWERUPDC 2020, go to


Small businesses are major contributors to the strength of the American economy. Every year they employ more than half the private work force nationally, create new jobs, and drive a majority of American innovations as well as increase U.S. competitiveness. The small businesses of Washington, DC are no exception and it is important to support their growth as they contribute to our local economy and community. “POWERUP DC” is an initiative developed by DC Health Link to provide access to various business support systems and networking opportunities through a range of cutting edge seminars, panel discussions, and focused presentations from experts in business.

DC Health Link’s small business partners are the Greater Washington Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (GWHCC), the DC Chamber of Commerce (DCCC), and the Restaurant Association Metropolitan Washington (RAMW). DC Health Link Small Business Brain Trust participating partners are the Capitol Hill’s Chamber of Commerce (CHAMPS), DC Department of Consumer & Regulatory Affairs (DCRA), DC Department of Insurance, Securities and Banking (DISB), DC Department of Small and Local Business Development (DSLBD), DC Small Business Development Center Network Howard University, Department of Housing and Community Development (DCHD), DC Main Streets Program, DC Women’s Business Center, Latino Economic Development Corporation (LEDC), Life Asset, Great Streets Program, The Mayor’s Office on Volunteerism and Partnerships (Serve DC), Office of the Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development (DMPED), Mayor’s Office on African Affairs (MOAA), Mayor’s Office On Latino Affairs (MOLA), U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), Washington Area Community Investment (WACIF), and Washington DC Economic Partnership.