Fortune 500 Companies Arrive in Anchorage to Promote Opportunities for Alaska Women-Owned Businesses

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Astra Women's Business Alliance, a non-profit and regional Partner for Women's Business Enterprise Council (WBENC), will be holding its Fourth Annual "Alaska Is Open For Business" event on October 20th-21st in Anchorage.

Decision makers from leading corporations and government entities will be joining Astra Women's Business Alliance and WBENC on October 20th for the "Corporate & Agency Economic Summit for WBE Development" at the Hotel Captain Cook.

You can register for this event by visiting:

Billions of dollars are spent in Alaska and the rate of growth for women-owned businesses in Alaska has been dismal compared to the rest of the nation Astra Women's Business Alliance is asking for a call to action to bring companies, federal and state agencies together to discuss various possibilities for formations of joint ventures and strategic alliances to create more viable ways to engage women business owners in Alaska. “We are delighted with the support of WBENC whose board members have traveled here from around the country to provide insights on creating more contracting opportunities for Alaskan women business owners which will positively impact women business owners around the country,” says, Diane McClelland, co-founder and President of Astra Women’s Business Alliance, host of the conference, and regional partner of WBENC.

The purpose of this Summit is to open up opportunities for contracts to women owned businesses in Alaska. Confirmed attendees include members of WBENC's National Board of Directors which include representatives from Raytheon, Johnson & Johnson, BP, UPS, Altria, IBM, Dell, KPMG, Ernst & Young, Bank of America. Special guests are Janet Weiss, BP Alaska President, Pamela Prince-Eason, President of Women’s Business Enterprise National Council and Benita Fortner, WBENC Board Chair and also representing Raytheon.

Women Business owners will have the opportunity to meet this delegation along with the Alaskan local and federal agencies for an evening reception at the Captain Cook starting at 5pm.

Gail Morrison, President of Allied GIS and the Alaska State Forum Leader for Astra Women's Business Alliance is pleased to announce to addition of two Joint Leaders of the Astra Alaska State Forum, "I am delighted that Deborah O'Leary, President of Alaska Green Solutions, Inc. and Terri Froese, President of TDL Staffing, Inc. are stepping up as leaders in our great state. They will be on hand in October to welcome WBENC's National Board of Directors and distinguished guests to our event."

On October 21st, the group will meet at the BP Energy Center for “Matchmaker & Workshops.” Women business owners can learn about new opportunities directly from Corporate and Agency Representatives as well as to meet successful women business owners who will share how they have used WBENC certification as a platform to grow their businesses.

Astra Women’s Business Alliance, is a 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation and a regional partner of WBENC. Astra provides WBENC and WOSB National certification to qualified women-owned businesses in the states of Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Northern California, Oregon, & Washington. Astra champions business growth by creating opportunities for contracts with large corporations and government agencies while providing these organizations with highly qualified strategic resources. For more information visit: For more information about WBENC visit:

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