ORVBDP Inaugural Class

Ohio River Valley Women’s Business Council & Procter & Gamble Partnered to Graduate the Inaugural  Class of the Ohio River Valley Business Development Program (ORVBDP)

CINCINNATI, OH, May 15, 2015 – Ohio River Valley Women’s Business Council (ORV~WBC) partnered with Procter & Gamble’s Corporate Supplier Diversity and Women’s Purchases Network to launch a new business development program for second stage woman-owned businesses. P&G spends more than $2 billion annually with diverse suppliers and is proactively partnering with ORV~WBC to create lasting economic impact through the growth of regional WBEs. “Supplier Diversity creates value in our business and our community, and ORVBDP is an innovative way we can leverage our unique skills to empower regional women-owned businesses to grow and thrive,” says Andrew Butler, P&G Corporate Supplier Diversity Manager.

The Ohio River Valley Business Development Program (ORVBDP) merges an existing business curriculum with training and coaching from P&G business leaders to provide an enriching program to a small group of women entrepreneurs. Mentor relationships were also established with female entrepreneurs from across the country that are also certified with the national WBENC organization. “The greatest challenge for business owners is stepping out of the day-to day business to truly embrace the role of planning and strategically thinking about how to grow their business,” says Sheila N. Mixon, ORV~WBC Interim Executive Director. “ORVBDP commits business owners to weekly engagement in a group-oriented environment where they can learn from not only the facilitators and guest speakers, but from each other, while building a strong support system and solid business strategies.”

The inaugural class of ORVBDP began in January with eight (8) WBENC certified women businesses (WBEs) participating from across the region. This 12 week program culminated with a graduation at ORV~WBC’s Regional Catch the Wave Conference last month, where John Pepper, former P&G Chairman of the Board and CEO, provided remarks in support of the graduates, P&G business leaders, and ORVBDP.

Congratulations to the 2015 ORVBDP Inaugural class:

  • Erin Arnold, NextStep Networking (Mentor: Julie Auslander, cSubs)
  • Tawana Bain, New Age Communications (Mentor: Andrea Schrager, Consumer Centers)
  • Brenda Beyersdoerfer, Quest Associates of Ohio (Mentor: Sandra James, Private Eyes)
  • Traci Curry, Curry Electric (Mentor: Peggy DelFabbro, M. Davis Construction)
  • Julie Holderbach, Promotions, Etc. (Mentor: Joan LaGrasse, Imagen)
  • Cathy Lindemann, Evolution creative solutions (Mentor: Karen Tate, The Griffin Tate Group)
  • Franceene McKinney, IOS Consultants (Mentor: Patti Massey, MYCA:Group)
  • Beth Radford, Allied Shipping & Packaging Supplies (Mentor: Tara Abraham, Accel Inc.)

ORV~WBC will begin the application process this summer for the next ORVBDP class beginning fall of this year. For more information, visit www.orvwbc.org or send an email to lyoung@orvwbc.org.


Ohio River Valley Women’s Business Council (ORV~WBC) is operated by the Urban League of Greater Southwestern Ohio under the authority of WBENC. The Urban League of Greater Southwestern Ohio is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization based in Cincinnati, Ohio. ORV~WBC provides a national, premier WBENC certification to women owned companies in Ohio, Kentucky and West Virginia. Major corporations and government agencies utilize the WBENC organization as a clearinghouse for women suppliers seeking procurement opportunities. Currently, over 800 women owned companies are certified through our region.