2006 Highlights of Asian Women In Business

AWIB's Rebuilding Efforts in Lower Manhattan
AWIB has played a key leadership role in the economic revitalization efforts in Lower Manhattan. In 2006, AWIB wound up a project as business development partner in a Chinatown-wide marketing and business assistance campaign to bring back visitors to this once-thriving neighborhood. AWIB organized four tremendously successful Taste of Chinatown events, each attracting tens of thousands of people, created many marketing packages to promote businesses, including a 96 page guide and coupon book. This project was funded by the September 11th Fund. Prior to this, AWIB was involved in providing technical assistance to Chinatown business owners through another project funded by the Empire State Development Corporation.

DECEMBER 13, 2006
Once again Asian Women In Business held an extremely festive and lively annual Holiday Party at the lovely loft of chairperson, Julie Azuma. This eleventh annual holiday party brought an overflow of AWIB friends and supporters together for intimate conversations, tasty foods and drinks. In the spirit of holiday cheer and warmth, numerous wonderful prizes were raffled off. It is no wonder that this event is a perennial favorite. Click to see photos, and the flyer.

NOVEMBER 29, 2006
AWIB's Art, Holiday Shopping and Networking offered attendees a great way to kick-off their holiday shopping while enjoying an evening of fruitful networking. The event showcased products from members of Asian Women In Business and included a delightfully varied selection of exquisite jewelry, handbags, gourmet chips and baked treats, custom made stationery, all-natural cosmetic products, Asian inspired accessories, and more. Attendees networked over wine (provided by General Billimoria Wines), hors d'oeuvres, and between rounds of shopping. Take a look at the event flyer.

November 2006
AWIB offered another of its ever-popular series on small business ownership. Starting Your Business 101 provided a four-part comprehensive overview of the essential elements to starting and running a business. Topics covered included - 'Are You Entrepreneurial Material?', 'Legal Structures and Tax Issues', 'Marketing Basics' and 'Financing and Insurance', respectively. The series was conducted by Joyce Moy, AWIB Member, and Executive Director, Economic Development, LaGuardia Community College. Joyce has consistently earned great evaluations as workshop leader. In addition to positive feedback on Joyce's 'candor, intelligence and experience' comments included 'concise, specific format', 'good examples', 'useful information and professional manner' and more. The workshop was held at Cornell University's Institute for Women & Work and funded by State Farm Insurance. Take a look at the event flyer.

OCTOBER 17, 2006
Over 650 of AWIB's supporters attended the 2006 Asian Women In Business Leadership Awards Dinner to applaud the achievements of Asian women entrepreneurs and corporate leaders as well as celebrate AWIB's Eleventh Anniversary. AWIB honored six extraordinary women during the event with the AWIB Corporate and Entrepreneurial Leadership Awards. The 2006 AWIB Corporate Leadership Award winners are Judy Hu, Global Executive Director, Advertising and Brand, General Electric and Victoria Chu Pao, President, Platts, The McGraw-Hill Companies. The 2006 AWIB Entrepreneurial Leadership Award winners are Betty Park, President and Founder, Pier 211f0 Restaurant and Manna's Soul Food Restaurants, Dr. Zenaida Santos, Founder and Vice President, United Home Care and United Medical Clinic, Saw-Teen See, Managing Partner, Leslie E. Robertson Associates, Dr. Rani Thukral, Founder and Chairperson, Rani Salons and Spas. AWIB extends a heartfelt thank you to our record number of sponsors this year. Read more about the event. Take a look at pictures from the Gala. View the 2006 Invitation.

SEPTEMBER 21, 2006
AWIB offered a perfect 'step into fall' evening with Coffee and Conversation. The coffee tasting and networking event was a delightful evening of aromas and tastes from around the world exquisitely paired with some decadent cakes and brownies and savory roasted almonds. Our coffee passport and Coffee Masters took us through Columbian to Arabian and Indonesian blends as we slurped, swirled and tasted to our heart's content. The caffeine and treats added to our networking enthusiasm and a full house showed up for the evening. A special thanks to Starbucks for hosting the event.

SEPTEMBER 15, 2006
AWIB held a New Member Breakfast give our newcomers an opportunity introduce themselves and their businesses to fellow members as well as learn more about AWIB and optimizing membership with the organization. The goal of these Breakfasts is to facilitate B2B connections within a smaller group. Each member got to offer a brief overview of their business as well as share literature. The event has served as an excellent networking opportunity with attendees staying well beyond the end of the breakfast to meet with other new members. The breakfast was held at Commerce Bank in midtown Manhattan.

JULY 29, 2006
AWIB held an exclusive reception for our Corporate sponsors and supporters as a special 'thank you' for their years of unwavering support. Many of AWIB's sponsors have been with us since our inception and have stood firmly behind us each year as we have grown into a nationally recognized organization. The reception was held in SoHo at the private luxury club Drive 495. Invitees enjoyed a relishing wine and hors d'oeuvres reception, while practicing their golf swing at the club's hi-tech simulators.

JULY 20, 2006
AWIB held a workshop "What's Your Business Pitch? Strategic Thinking for your Business to attract Clients, Investors & Partners" aimed at helping business owners communicate their business ideas effectively and clearly. Often entrepreneurs have inspired business ideas, but are just not able to generate excitement among the target audience with their current pitch. The workshop, conducted by Sarah Chung of Periscope Solutions helped attendees in effectively articulating the WHAT and WHY of their business to serve as the foundation of a business pitch. Sarah also covered how to identify the key selling points of a product/service, and refine one's big thinking to better articulate and increase the attractiveness of a business. The workshop received praise for being hands on and interactive as well as the feedback participants received. As one attendee put it, 'it got me to think about my business in a different way'. It was held at Cornell University's Institute for Women and Work in mid-town Manhattan. Take a look at the event flyer.

JUNE 13, 2006
The Asian Women In Business Corporate Initiative held a panel discussion and reception to a full house of corporate Asian women. Progress Makes Perfect: Maximizing Opportunities for Corporate Asian Women, drew nearly 300 attendees. The evening began with a networking reception, followed by a top notch panel of Asian women executives engaging in an enlightening dialogue on their paths to the top and offering valuable information on achieving career success. The panelists were Sheila Hooda, Managing Director, Credit Suisse, Akiko Koh, Senior Vice President, GE Equipment Services, Wan Ling Martello, Senior Vice President, Chief Financial Officer, Wal-Mart International and Rashmini Yogaratnam, Managing Director, Citigroup Global Markets Inc. Juju Chang, Correspondent, ABC News was the moderator. Speakers shared their unique experiences and lessons learned which in turned helped them pursue and realize their dreams. Speakers also answered questions from the audience. Many stayed on afterwards to talk one-on-one with the panelists and continue networking. The event was held at Citigroup's facilities at 388 Greenwich Street in Manhattan. The evening was a follow up to our highly successful launch of the AWIB Corporate Initiative in 2005. Take a look at the 2006 event flyer and Speaker Bios.

MAY 17, 2006
AWIB members were treated to a spectacular private viewing and reception at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The members-only event featured the exhibition: Hatshepsut: From Queen to Pharaoh. Hatshepsut was the great female pharaoh of Egypt's 18th Dynasty and the exhibition included the Met's own extensive holdings and collections from other American and European museums, as well as loans from Cairo. The event was hosted by Dana Tyler, CBS 2 Anchor and featured a thrilling dance performance. AWIB's private receptions at the Met are always a big hit with our members, and are made possible by President Bonnie Wong's membership with the Museum's Multicultural Audience Development Advisory Committee.

MAY 4, 2006
AWIB Annual Conference: Procurement Opportunities for Minority/Women-owned Business Enterprises was a magnet for business owners from industries as varied as food products to technology to construction. Over 400 clamored to attend the event, including some from Massachusetts, Georgia and Alabama, all vying for the last few spots to attend a packed-to-capacity conference. The high demand conference, a leading event for M/WBEs, included something for all business owners.
Conference Highlights:

Corporate & Government Procurement Panels: Three informative panels covered "Doing Business with the Federal Government", "Doing Business with New York-New Jersey/New York City and Public Authorities", and the always popular one on "Selling to Corporate America". Attendees got a comprehensive overview of the procurement process, tips to get a foot in the door and examples of winning M/WBE strategies. In addition, the opportunity to network with the speakers afterwards was mentioned as invaluable by several attendees.

Corporate Matchmaking: A&P Supermarket, Aramark, Bank of New York, CBS, Con Edison, Enterprise-Rent-a-Car, FedEx, HBO, IBM, Merck, New Line Cinema, Time Warner and Wal-Mart met one-on-one with nearly 100 pre-qualified M/WBEs offering products and services the companies were looking to source. Many M/WBEs reported excellent meetings with the corporations and we wish them luck on turning those to full-fledged contracts.

Construction Opportunities: With so many huge construction projects slated in New York, we felt it only appropriate to hold a forum on potential it holds for M/WBEs. AWIB's special session on construction opportunities featured representatives from Bovis Lend Lease (New Mets Stadium), The Darman Group (Brooklyn Rail Yard/Nets Arena) and Phoenix Constructors (World Trade Center Transportation Hub) discuss how M/WBEs can be a part of these projects. Again, the opportunity to meet the key players and ask questions was cited as a valuable opportunity.

Conference Exhibitors: In addition to the panels, corporate matchmaking and construction opportunities sessions attendees met with over 20 government and local authorities who were exhibitors throughout the conference. Attendees picked up information on doing business with these agencies as well as on M/WBE certification. Agencies included Empire State Development Corporation, Internal Revenue Service, International Trade Administration, Jacob K. Javits Convention Center, Lower Manhattan Construction Command Center, Lower Manhattan Development Corporation, Metropolitan Transportation Authority, NJ Transit, NY Dormitory Authority, NY Power Authority, NYC Board of Education, NYC Department of Environmental Protection, NYC Department of Small Business Services, NYC Housing Authority, NYS Department of Environmental Conservation, Port Authority of NY/NJ, U.S. Department of Commerce-MBDA, U.S. Department of Labor, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, U.S. General, Services Administration and U.S. Small Business Administration as well as ConEdison, Enterprise-Rent-A-Car, IBM and Merck.

The conference was held at The Bank of New York in Lower Manhattan and a special thanks to them for hosting the event and providing breakfast and lunch for the well over-booked event. Despite having more people than the space could hold, we had to close registration days in advance and many M/WBEs couldn't attend. Please make sure you register early next year. Here's a look at the event flyer and pictures from the conference.

APRIL 22, 2006
Taste of Chinatown
AWIB organized the Fourth Taste of Chinatown and thousands of visitors filled the streets to get their hands on $1 and $2 tastings of the lip smacking delicacies Chinatown offers. Over 50 restaurants, tea houses, bakeries and specialty food shops took part in the event, offering a mouth-watering sampling of Chinese, Malaysian, Japanese, Vietnamese and other cuisines that have made NYC's Chinatown a true food mecca. Peking Duck, vegetarian snails, sautéed shrimp with pumpkin sauce, dim sum platters, grilled beef and papaya salad, ginger lemon cider - just a handful of the hundreds of choices that greeted Taste-goers. The rain played spoil sport towards the end, but our brave tasters just opened up their umbrellas and stayed put to get their tasting plates. With Mott Street closed to vehicular traffic for several blocks, visitors could leisurely spent the afternoon strolling, shopping and taking part in some of the fun activities we had lined up. There was a Wonton Food Fortune Cookie Writing Contest, where the best fortunes make it into fortune cookies. Visitors could also vote for their favorite tasting stations, the top three choices receiving the "Best of Taste of Chinatown" award. There was lion dancing, a colorful and noisy display of artistry and a perennial crowd favorite, and for the kids the Metropolitan Museum of the Arts, the Children's Museum of Arts and the Museum of the Chinese in the Americas offered fun arts and crafts activities to keep them busy and out of trouble. The crowd loved the luau themed seating area, where many families chose to sit down, relax and savor their tasting plates.
AWIB organized this event as part of a post 9/11 project to bring back visitors to Chinatown. Click here for tasting Take a look at pictures from the event.

APRIL 12, 2006
AWIB's workshop Speak Up And Speak Out: Expressing Yourself with Power and Confidence was held to a packed house. Attendees, a mix of business owners and professionals, picked up the key techniques to talking confidently, concisely and credibly. The workshop offered vital information on how to accentuate one's strengths and overcome weaknesses when speaking in public - in contexts ranging from office briefings to big presentations. This workshop was conducted by corporate trainer and AWIB member, Tessie Tiaba, whose dynamic training style is always a hit with participants. The workshop was partially funded by the JP Morgan Chase Foundation. Take a look at the event flyer.

MARCH 29, 2006
AWIB celebrated Women's History Month with a networking reception featuring filmmaker Georgia Lee. Georgia made quite a splash with her debut feature film, the multiple-award winning Red Doors, which she wrote, directed and co-produced. Red Doors won Best Narrative Feature Award at the 2005 Tribeca Film Festival among others. Excerpts from the film were shown and was followed by a talk with Georgia. Her story - giving up a lucrative career and dropping out of Harvard Business School to pursue her passion as a filmmaker - struck a chord with the nearly 250 attendees leading to a lively Q&A session. For guests, it was a perfect evening - in addition to an inspiring story, they enjoyed a sushi and wine reception and a 30% shopping discount from Esprit, where the event was held. Here's a look at the event flyer.

MARCH 2006
AWIB's popular seminar series on small business ownership Starting Your Business 101 attracted a new round of budding entrepreneurs, who received a four-part comprehensive overview of setting up and running a business. Topics covered were 'Are You Entrepreneurial Material?', 'Legal Structures and Tax Issues', 'Marketing Basics' and 'Financial Resources'. The series was conducted by Joyce Moy, AWIB member and Executive Director, Economic Development, LaGuardia Community College, who as usual received plaudits for her knowledge and ability to convey information in a down to earth manner. This series is partially funded by the JP Morgan Chase Foundation. Take a look at the event flyer.
If you didn't get a chance to attend this time since the class was sold out, stay tuned and register early when AWIB offers the series next.

FEBRUARY 28, 2006
For budding restaurant owners, AWIB's workshop "How To Start A Restaurant" was a valuable one-stop learning experience covering all aspects of setting up a restaurant business. The workshop featured two Asian women restaurant owners providing real-life advice to attendees while industry experts offered a step by step overview of the process, rules and regulations and financial aspects of starting a restaurant. Lan Tran Cao, Owner/Chef of Viet Cafe discussed her transition from Chief Technology Officer at Deutsche Bank to art gallery and restaurant owner. Jennifer Maeng, Owner, Korean Temple Cuisine who co-founded her East Village restaurant with her sister as a 20-year undergraduate, provided a succinct and down to earth account of her experience and her secrets of sustainability in a cut-throat business. Other speakers were Chuck Hunt, EVP, NY State Restaurant Association and Christina Uleano, Assistant Vice President, Commerce Bank. The workshop, which was held at Viet-Cafe in Tribeca, included a delicious 3-course dinner and wine. Though we lingered over our dinner a little too long, it was a good networking opportunity for the attendees from different industry backgrounds but a common goal of restaurant ownership. Here's a look at the event flyer.

JANUARY 18, 2006
New AWIB members were invited to this first event of 2006. Attendees made good use of the opportunity to introduce their businesses and open up a dialogue for potential business partnerships with other participants. They also got an in-depth look at AWIB as an organization and ways to make the most of membership. As in the case of previous New Member Breakfasts, the networking continued well after the event was over. The event was held at North Fork Bank in Manhattan.

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