The Women-In-Business Challenge is a business accelerator program for early start businesses owned by female entrepreneurs. The pitch encourages women to dream big in the pursuit of innovative, technology-driven, socially responsible as well as traditional enterprises.
Entrepreneur Tabitha Bethune with The Wild Life Reserve took home $10,000 from the Challenge hosted by the Urban League of Greater New Orleans.
The Wild Life Reserve is a retail and collaborative design space producing limited and short-run goods to support the creative community.
The organization opened its flagship store at 111 St. Charles Avenue at the end of 2014. The brand’s focus is to preserve what has been built in New Orleans for the apparel industry and continue the tradition of making quality goods domestically. With the new store, the company aims to educate customers and to ensure brand loyalty, while bring back customer service to retail, offering free alterations with all purchases.
The challenge pitch has become one of the many staples of New Orleans Entrepreneur Week (NOEW). In 2013, co-founder and CEO of The Idea Village announced it would grow to become an annual event. “It’s about bringing those diverse communities together to showcase the unique talents of our community in a collaborative way,” said Williamson.
Other participating entrepreneurs included: Lorinda Bettencourtt, The Porch dba Lemonade Parade; Juanita L. Jackson, The Duchess B&B of New Orleans; and Ariane Craig Jolla, HYPE Academy (Helping Young People Excel).