Aisha Taylor Issah is the founder and CEO of the Sistahs in Business Expo, a multi-city event highlighting and celebrating Black women entrepreneurs. (Courtesy Photos)

By Megan Sayles, AFRO Business Writer,
Report for America Corps Member,
msayles@afro.com

The Sistahs in Business (SIB) Expo, an event celebrating and educating Black female entrepreneurs, is returning to the Washington Metropolitan area this year at the Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center in College Park on Aug. 13. 

The multi-city small business expo will boast over 75 diverse vendors displaying their products and services and feature keynote speakers including actress, producer and life coach, AJ Akua Johnson, and motivational speaker and best-selling author, Dr. Cheryl Wood. 

Seasoned entrepreneur and minister Aisha Taylor Issah founded the SIB Expo in 2018 out of a desire to create a space for women of color entrepreneurs. 

“It was during that time that a lot of talk came out about how women of color were the largest and fastest growing demographic of entrepreneurs in the country, but when you dug a little deeper, you learned that yes, we were the largest, fastest growing but we were also the least earning, the least funded and the least supported,” said Issah. “That didn’t sit well with me, and I wanted to create something that would help to change that and to close that gap.” 

This year, the SIB Expo began its tour in Philadelphia and will continue to College Park, Maryland, Atlanta and Newark, New Jersey. It’s also the first time that the expo will be hybrid, allowing those who cannot attend in person to stream the event and shop from vendors virtually.

The SIB Expo will bring back its superpower panel, in which a group of local businesswomen will share their journey and how they grew their brands, and its passion to profit panel, which teaches attendees how to turn a passion or hobby into a profitable business. 

It’s also a family event so all are welcome, and the first 100 attendees will receive a VIP gift bag filled with free swag and merchandise. 

Along with the SIB Expo, Issah also runs the Sistahs in Business University, which provides extensive training for entrepreneurs on how to start, grow, and scale their businesses. She established the school the year following the first expo after numerous attendees reached out to ask for more resources. 

Issah said she’s grateful to be able to provide her “sistahs” in business with a platform that gives them the opportunity to advance their businesses, and she hopes people save their coins, so they’re ready to shop at the expo. 

“We always tell people to come ready for whatever God has in store for them,” said Issah. “Be open, be a sponge, be ready to soak up and take in every experience and every opportunity. 

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