CINCINNATI — November 30, 2023 – The Cincinnati Chamber Foundation, in partnership with the Duke Energy Foundation, awarded a total of $75,000 in grants to small minority, veteran and women-owned businesses. The awards were distributed in increments of $5,000 to the selected businesses listed below.
“The Chamber is fully committed to fostering the growth of the local small business community,” said Brendon Cull, President & CEO of the Cincinnati Regional Chamber. “All of these small businesses are building communities, growing our economy, and contributing to the overall strength of the entire region.”
“With the holidays upon us, our local small businesses are working tirelessly to serve their customers,” said Amy Spiller, president, Duke Energy Ohio and Kentucky. “We hope these funds bring a little extra cheer to those business owners who continue to navigate the current economy. And, as always, we encourage everyone to shop small.”
The grants will be used for various operational expenses to help these businesses recover, support employees, and grow.
Sweet Sistah Splash – Sheba Mama – Jacquelynn Byrd, owner
A Boutique, bookstore art gallery that also coordinates large-scale community art events.
Waverly’s Hope Child Care LLC – Ryan Caldwell, owner
A childcare service that offers personalized learning strategies, cost-effective services, and the capability to support and nurture children with disabilities and health challenges.
Blossoms Florist Inc – Carol Ruffin, owner
An award-winning florist that has served the Cincinnati area for more than 30 years providing consistently reliable service, with outstanding floral planning, design, and execution.
Lentz & Company – Leigh Ann Lentz, owner
Located in Clifton, Lentz & Company offers vintage home goods, furniture + local art and handmade gifts.
Minks By Marie LLC – Sydney Huntley, owner
Minks by Marie, LLC, creates job opportunities for young and up-and-coming beauty experts. Owner Sydney Marie Huntley creates a community and idea of safety.
KOFINAS Olive Oil – Evengelia Semertzides, owner
Owner, Evengelia Somertzides, has brought her olive oil from Crete, Greece to Cincinnati – sharing an important part of her heritage with friends and neighbors.
OTR Funplex – Frank Hailstock, owner
OTR Funplex offers fun experiences such as: Escape Rooms, Splatter Painting, Smash Room, Private Karaoke Rooms, Party Rooms, Slime Making, and a Board Game Lounge. Owner and Cincinnati native, Frank Hailstock, takes pride in bringing this first-of-its-kind entertainment to the Tri-State area!
Mad Cheese, LLC – Heather Donaldson, owner
Offering, 100% plant-based meats and cheeses. Mad Cheese hopes you will lover their products, vegan or not!
Cream + Sugar Coffeehouse – Taren Kinebrew, owner
Cream + Sugar is a place where every walk of life is welcomed and encouraged to engage and offers eating a space perfect for business meetings, catching up with friends and family, and a place to refuel or to simply be inspired through the eclectic and artistic vibe that they house.
Olive Tree Catering LLC – Ibtisam Masto, owner
With a challenging journey from Syria and Lebanon to the United States, owner Ibtisam Masto showcases the cuisines of her family lineages, bringing people together through the flavors and dishes she grew up with.
RushFit Studio – Russia Edwards, owner
RushFit Studio is a Black-owned boutique fitness studio, located in the Pendleton District of Cincinnati. Offers services that are inclusive, personable and achievable, building confidence in all who join no matter the shape or size.
Bonus Golf – Elisha Herrmann, owner
Bonus Golf is a high tech simulated indoor golf facility that focuses on family interests. We welcome all to come enjoy our space to play golf rounds, have date nights and host parties.
DEFINE Oakley – Jill Fishburn, owner
DEFINE Oakley is a group fitness studio with multiple class methods: Barre, Cycle and bounce. DEFINE helps members find length, strength and balance in their body and their mind.
DJX Construction Company LLC – James Stocks, owner
DJX Construction is a privately held minority-owned general contracting firm operating in the heavy civil construction industry. DJX performs general construction and property maintenance for both the public and private sectors.
Love on Fourth – Ricardo Grant, owner
LoVe was started to create a one-of-a-kind experience for Cincinnati. Pairing a nightclub with hospitality. Love was started as a LoVe letter to the city that has always believed in the owner, Rico Grant, ad helped him grow.