2017 Seeds of GROWth Awards Luncheon


Congratulations to the 2016 Seeds of GROWth Award Winners:


2016 Seeds of GROWth Award Winners, Courtesy of Women’s Lifestyle Magazine


Lee Ann Moss Service Award Winner: Kay Staszel


GROW Leadership Award Winner: Jessica Ann Tyson


GROW Business of the Year Award Winner: Michele Venegas, Joyful Sounds Music Studio




Seeds of GROWth Awards, Courtesy of Women’s Lifestyle Magazine

Special thanks to our keynote Speaker: Gwen Jimmere



This year’s event featured keynote speaker Gwen Jimmere, founder and CEO of Naturalicious. Jimmere is the first black woman to hold a patent for a natural hair care product, as well as the winner of the 2014 Black Enterprise Elevator Pitch Competition, and one of Hello Beautiful’s 30 Under 30 Entrepreneurial Mavens.

As the founder and CEO of Naturalicious, Jimmere has grown her beauty industry start-up into one of the fastest growing hair care companies in the United States. Recently named by Black Enterprise Magazine as one of the top beauty brands in the United States, the line is sold in select Whole Foods stores, all Mustard Seed Market locations, and other fine retailers and boutiques.

Jimmere also co-owns Pitch Proof, where she coaches and trains small business owners on how to prepare for, enter, and win business pitch competitions, as well as how to successfully attract equity investment opportunities. Additionally, she consults with entrepreneurs on business strategy, marketing, advertising, and distribution.

Prior to beginning Naturalicious, Jimmere held the position of global digital marketing manager at Ford Motor Company, overseeing and executing its digital marketing strategy. Later, she went to work for Uniworld, one of the world’s largest multicultural advertising firms, where she spearheaded digital strategies for clients including Ford, Home Depot, Marriott Hotels, and many more.

Thank You to Our 2016 Sponsors

Inclusion Sponsors

GRBJ logo


Varnum Sponsor Logo
Comerica Bank Logo





Accessibility Sponsors

Chemical Bank

Flex Checks Logo
834 Design Logo_stacked-01

Women’s Business Initiative Committee

Confidence Sponsors

Bonnie K Miller
Eastern Floral
AHC Hospitality
Spectrum Health
El Vocero
Merrill Lynch
Fifth Third Bank

Award Sponsor (Exclusive)

Mercantile Bank

Equipping Sponsors

Cynthia Kay & Company
Languages International, Inc.
Old National Bank
Irwin Seating Company
Management Business Solutions
Grand River Bank
The Economic Club of Grand Rapids
Appletree & Gilden Woods Childcare
PNC Bank

Relationship Sponsors

Adventure Credit Union
El Granjero Restaurant
Express Employment Professionals
Grand Valley State University
West Michigan Women’s Expo
Legacy Trust
Muller, Myers & Farran, PC
Preferred Benefits
The Welch Law Firm. PLC
Applied Imaging
GRCC Bob & Alecia Woodrick Center for Equity and Inclusion
Sytsma Wealth Strategies
Danielle Rowland State Farm
Deborah A. Phillips & Associates
Baker Holtz CPAs & Advisors
Partners in Action, Inc.
Reagan Marketing + Design

IT Resources, Inc.
Start Garden
Rockford Construction
OnSite Wellness, LLC
Cascade Engineering
Women’s Lifestyle
Serendipity Media
KMS Group
Grand Rapids Urban League
Avanti Law Group
ITS Partners
Well Mannered Dog Center
Green Giftz by Promotional Impact
DeHoek & Company
Hungerford Nichols
Micro Visions, Inc.