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Urban League opens Rochester's first women's business center

Rochester's skyline from Court Street
James Brown
Rochester's skyline from Court Street

The Urban League of Rochester has opened the area’s first women’s business center.

The ROC Women’s Business Center is located in a building owned by the Urban League on Platt Street, and it was established with the help of $150,000 from the U.S. Small Business Administration. That’s funding that can be renewed annually.

Khara Grant is the center’s director. She is a Rochester native who comes from a career in business development and marketing.

Grant said that this new center is being established to provide support for women who may not have had a central location in the past where they could get various kinds of business consulting services.

“We want to do a mix of different things for entrepreneurs in this area, anywhere from an entrepreneur who wants to start a business who has no idea what they’re doing, to large corporations with staff,” said Grant. “We want to make sure that the entrepreneurs have access to technical assistance, training, workshops, (and) business development will be covered here.”

Grant said the Rochester center is one of a number of similar centers around the country.

“And just with this SBA program alone, to have 140 Women’s Business Centers across the nation is tremendous,” said Grant. “That’s going to be a tremendous footprint, and (help with) the growth of our economy.”

Grant said the new Women’s Business Center also wants to partner with the local corporate community to do things like teach workshops and sponsor various kinds of events.

Randy Gorbman is WXXI's director of news and public affairs. Randy manages the day-to-day operations of WXXI News on radio, television, and online.