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The NotMom.com: An Official Bad Girl

Bad Girl Ventures offers micro-lending, business development classes and mentoring for entrepreneurial women. This year, The NotMom.com was among the program's winners.

Yes, a website for and about America's childless women was my idea, but without encouragement from other NotMoms, advertising and marketing pros, bloggers and others, I might never have uploaded the first post. Now, a group of anonymous investors has sent an even stronger message of support: $5,000.

Last February, The NotMom.com was selected as one of 10 finalists in a fabulous micro-lending program for Ohio's entrepreneurial women: Bad Girl Ventures (BGV).  It started in Cincinnati several years ago and arrived in Cleveland last fall.  Nine weeks of business development classes and coursework at Shaker LaunchHouse. I call it "Business School in less than 100 days."

Classes are open to the public at $25/class  and free for finalists. Men are welcome, though few attend. (It might be just as well -- consensus among female students was that their openness to ask questions might be squashed with men in the class.  Who said full-grown women are any different from 7th grade girls?)

At the end of the program, each finalist has a completed business plan, knows her way around funding options and can spit out a cheery 60-second "elevator speech" on command. A selection committee decides which woman will receive a $25,000 low-interest loan from BGV partner Keybank.

Luckily for me, the Spring 2012 BGV class was chosen to receive an additional $15,000 prize/loan from an anonymous giving circle called The Give Back Gang.  A giving circle is a group of everyday people who each contribute a set amount of money to be donated to a nonprofit selected by the group.  In this case, The Give Back Gang decided to make 3 awards instead of one or two.  Yay!

At graduation ceremonies on May 16th, The NotMom.com received a $5,000 low-interest loan in the 3-way tie for Second Place. Translation? We're on to something here, ladies!

First Prize went to Alison Musser's Babies Travel Too. Yep. Babies & NotMoms, winners all.

Alison's company provides name-brand baby furniture at your home or hotel when little visitors are expected. The other $5,000 winners included Anne Harnett, owner of Cleveland's first sustainably run group cycling center, Harness Cycle Studio, and Kelley Hynds of Hyndsight Productions. Through a new venture, Kelley plans to produce short, informative online videos giving background to topics in the news.  

If you think you have a Bad Girl inside you, applications for the Fall class will be open in June. 

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Mike May 25, 2012 at 10:25 PM
"Bad Girl Ventures". Oh, give me a break. What a stupid name. As for "NotMom.com", it seems to make the assumption that entreprenurial women are all single with no children.
Karen Malone Wright May 26, 2012 at 02:23 AM
Thanks, Henry. LOL, Joe.
Karen Malone Wright May 26, 2012 at 02:25 AM
Perhaps you didn't read far enough to see that Bad Girl Ventures' big winner is a company owned by a Mom for Moms.
Karen Malone Wright May 26, 2012 at 02:26 AM
Thank you!
Karen Malone Wright May 26, 2012 at 02:26 AM
Thanks, Kim!

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