WomenVenture's 40th Anniversary Women Mean Business Luncheon to Honor Local Fitness Entrepreneur

Connie Sheehan, owner of PUSH Fitness, to receive Emerging Business Award

MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. — For 40 years, WomenVenture has been helping Twin Cities women start and grow sustainable and profitable businesses. Each year, nearly 1,000 business professionals, community leaders, and individuals come together to recognize these efforts and invest in the economic success of women at WomenVenture’s Women Mean Business Luncheon & Marketplace. This year’s event will be held on October 13 at The Depot Minneapolis and will feature a keynote address from Anne Hed, founder of Hed Cycling, whose innovative bike wheels have kept her rolling on an inspiring entrepreneurial journey. In addition, three local women-owned businesses will be honored with Nothing Ventured, Nothing Gained awards in three categories: Emerging Business, Expanding Business, and Social Entrepreneur.

The Nothing Ventured, Nothing Gained Emerging Business Award is presented to a WomenVenture client with an innovative product or service whose business has benefited from our assistance and has shown increased sales and demonstrated consistent positive growth. The selected business must also be a newer business that has overcome obstacles along the way and has made an impact in the community they serve. This year’s recipient of the Emerging Business Award is Connie Sheehan, owner of PUSH Fitness, who offers spin, barre, tabata, and yoga classes, as well as personal training.

Connie Sheehan is on a mission to help women, especially women of color, learn to love their bodies. Having spent ten years teaching at the YMCA, Connie dreamt of opening her own studio, but fear kept holding her back. A push from her sister ultimately led her to WomenVenture, where she enrolled in the intensive, 3-month long Guided Business Plan program. “It was absolutely perfect for where I was in my life,” says Connie. Armed with a brand new business plan, PUSH Fitness became a reality in November of 2015 when Connie offered her first class in a space leased from a boxing gym. Since that time, Connie has moved into her own studio, has 5 subcontractors who work for her, and is preparing to celebrate PUSH’s second anniversary. Notes Connie, “A huge added benefit for me is to be a person of color and to see women of color come to class.”

“Connie identified a need in the market that sparked her entrepreneurial spirit,” says Elaine Wyatt, WomenVenture Executive Director. “With a little help and a lot of hard work, she was able to overcome her fears and start her own business. And thanks to the generous supporters who come to Women Mean Business, WomenVenture is able to assist hundreds of women just like Connie as they work to build and grow their own profitable and sustainable small businesses.”

Guests at the event will learn how WomenVenture helps women entrepreneurs by providing them with the training, consulting and capital they need to be successful. They will also have the opportunity to support local, women-owned businesses by shopping and networking in a marketplace with over 40 vendor booths featuring unique products and services.

WomenVenture’s Women Mean Business Luncheon & Marketplace will be held October 13, 2017 at The Depot Minneapolis. The Marketplace will be open from 11:00 am – 12:15 pm for shopping and again from 2:00 – 3:00 pm. The pavilion will open at 12:00 pm and the Luncheon will take place from 12:30 – 2:00 pm. Well-known gospel singer Jearlyn Steele will emcee the event, which will feature a keynote address from Anne Hed, founder of Hed Cycling. Tickets for the Luncheon are $160 per person or $1,500 for a table of 10. Tickets for the event can be purchased at www.WomenVenture.org/WMB .


About WomenVenture

WomenVenture is a Minneapolis-based nonprofit dedicated to helping women attain economic self-sufficiency through the creation and growth of profitable and sustainable businesses. For four decades, the organization has provided more than 100,000 women of all ages, cultures, races and income levels with the tools and resources to make their entrepreneurial dreams a reality. Last year, WomenVenture helped start or expand 185 businesses that created and/or retained 1,050 jobs and paid an average wage of $27 per hour. These businesses generated $44.6 million in revenue and contributed $5.9 million in tax revenue to the state of MN. WomenVenture also distributed and facilitated $11,120,000 in capital to our clients.

WomenVenture client businesses are fueling Minnesota's economy. They help communities grow by paying taxes, by supporting other local businesses, and by creating jobs that pay living wages. For more information about WomenVenture, visit www.WomenVenture.org .