Birmingham Black-Woman-Owned Businesses You Need to Know!
I've been lucky enough to get to know some absolutely amazing black women business owners right here in Birmingham who are doing some seriously impressive things. And since we're celebrating Black Business Month, I thought it was the perfect time to introduce you to a few of these remarkable individuals!
So, keep reading to meet these awesome friends of mine and learn a bit about what they're up to.
Tanesha Sims-Summers, owner of Naughty But Nice Kettle Corn.
I have such a business crush on Tanesha and admired her from afar before we ever met. When a mutual friend invited her to one of my networking events, I'm pretty sure I acted like a fan girl who was trying to look cool!
Tanesha had a successful corporate career, but she felt there was more out there for her. With zero popcorn or kettle corn know-how, she, along with her awesome husband Clem, took a leap of faith and launched Naughty But Nice Kettle Corn right here in Birmingham almost a decade ago. And guess what? It's been a roaring success! It's actually one of my go-to recommendations for corporate gifting projects.
Tanesha's creative flavors (yep, green apple kettle corn is a must-try, and my kids adore it!) alongside the classics, are such a treat. If you can start a bag of Sweet & Salty and not eat the whole thing, I want to meet you. You can check out Tanesha and the amazing company she's building at https://shopnbnkettlecorn.com/.
Martha Underwood, Founder, Prismm.
Martha is hands down one of the smartest people I've ever met, especially when it comes to all things tech. When she starts talking passionately about her brainchild, Prismm, I can't help but be both fascinated and a tad intimidated.
From Silicon Valley to IBM and ultimately landing as the Head of Retail Software Engineering at BBVA Compass right here in Birmingham, Martha is the master of all things digital transformation.. In 2020, she put her tech genius and understanding of human needs to work, and that's how Prismm was born.
If you've ever found yourself digging through piles of papers looking for that one critical document, you've probably wished for an easier, better way. Well, that's exactly what Prismm is – a safe, encrypted, firewalled filing cabinet where all your information is stored in one place, ready to be retrieved safely, easily and quickly– for you and your designated loved ones.
See? I told you she was the smartest person I know! I use Prismm myself and cannot recommend it strongly enough (I get nothing, zip, nada for recommending it). Learn more about Martha and Prissm at https://getprismm.com/
Shella Sylla, Founder, SisterGolf
If you notice a slight resemblance between Shella and Martha (above), you're not imagining things because they are sisters. I'm not sure what I love most about Shella - her business smarts, her mad golf skills or her bold Miami fashion sense. She combines it all into her fab company, SisterGolf.
Shella knows that so much business goes down on the golf course, and she's here to make sure women don't miss out on those opportunities just because they don't feel they have the skills and the savvy to hold their own. SisterGolf teaches women everything they need to know – from skills to etiquette – so they can confidently build professional connections and take their careers to the next level.
How genius is that? One my goals before 2023 is over is to sign up for the next group class Shella offers. Want to learn more about SisterGolf and join me? Just pop over here: www.sistergolfonline.com.
Keyani Washington, Founder CHAT Skin & Hair Co.
I met Keyani when she was president of Alabama Women in Business, and we hit it off instantly. We even jokingly call ourselves twins because we're so much alike! Keyani isn't just a successful business owner; she's also a veteran, a chapter leader for The Rosie Network, and a dedicated mom to an energetic 11-month-old.
You only need about half a minute with Keyani to feel her passion for healthy hair and skin. And that passion drove her to create CHAT – a line of all-natural hair and skincare products that are absolute game-changers. To me, what sets Keyani apart is her in-depth knowledge of how all kinds of skin and hair actually work. So, if you've got a skin or hair concern, she's got you covered with insights and solutions customized specially for you.
I'm literally hopping onto her website right now to snag a mason jar of her decadent Butter Lotion. (Get some. Your skin will love you.) If you want to know more about Keyani and CHAT check out https://www.chatshco.com.
Darlene Wilson, Founder & Managing Principal, RAM Firm
By now, you've probably caught on – I'm surrounded by brilliant women, and Darlene is no exception. Not only did she kickstart RAM, a dynamic accounting business, but she's also Chairman of the Board of the Birmingham Airport Authority, and a close advisor to organizations across the city. Yep, she's that incredible!
Darlene took RAM from small beginnings to one of the fastest-growing accounting firms in the country. What's even cooler is that she's using her entrepreneurial know-how to help her clients grow successful and sustainable businesses. She's like having an accountant and business consultant all rolled into one!
Just a heads up, if you chat with Darlene, be ready for some seriously thought-provoking questions that might send you on a research spree. Every time I talk to her, I leave feeling smarter and more equipped for my business journey. You'll definitely experience the same. Curious to know more about Darlene and RAM Firm? Dive into the details at https://ramfirm.com/.
So, there you have it – a glimpse into the lives of these extraordinary black business women who are making waves in Birmingham and beyond. It's truly such a pleasure to have them in my life, and I hope you'll be just as inspired by their stories as I am.