Ohio Sec. of State Frank LaRose visits Youngstown Enterprise Incubator to speak minority entrepreneurship


He met at the Youngstown Business Incubator to discuss the women’s and youth leadership program

by: Taylor Long

Posted: Apr 16, 2021 / 10:19 PM EDT
Updated: April 16, 2021 / 10:19 p.m. EDT

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose stopped in Youngstown Friday to meet about the Youngstown Business Incubator’s Women and Youth Leadership Program.

The roundtable consisted of discussions with young people and entrepreneurs about their obstacles, successes and progress here in Buckeye state.

Youngstown Business Incubator is part of a government partnership to support minority-owned businesses

LaRose said 171,000 new businesses were launched in Ohio last year.

He said it takes courage for people to take action amid all these uncertainties. So he’s trying to pass a bill that will make it easier for minority business owners to get their MBE certification.

“When business owners spend their time filling out forms and paying fees, they aren’t spending that time making shea butter, cookies or bracelets to sell to their customers,” LaRose said.

One of these young entrepreneurs is 8 year old Anya Rose Reynolds. She is the owner of “A. Rose Shea Butter Company, which sells shea butter and essential oil lotions. She started it when she was 6.

“It’s good to have my business so I can have money to buy new things for my family and myself,” Reynolds said.

Her parents are entrepreneurs too and they said it was important for them to teach their money management at a young age.

“We have a logo, a company name, so she’s in full swing and it’s very important to us as her parents,” said Tanisha Wheeler, Reynolds’ mother.

Program Director Stephanie Gilchrist said the opportunities to teach entrepreneurship to youth are endless. You can play a key role in the community.

“Then we talk about our students and our youth leaving our church. This is a great way to keep them at home here in Youngstown and expand our city just as we used to know, ”said Gilchrist.

The next goal of the program is to help the youngsters do internships this summer and eventually get a space to display their products.