It’s nice when you hear stories of successful people remembering where they came from and giving back to help others who might be in a similar situation to when they got started. Today’s industry leaders were likely the beneficiaries of some good fortune on their way to the top (not to diminish their hard work), and now they’re paying it forward by giving others a better chance to follow in their footsteps.
Take world-famous designer Tory Burch, for example. She recently announced a program that will provide resources for female entrepreneurs. The inaugural Fellows Competition will identify 10 Fellows to become ambassadors for women entrepreneurs. The Fellows will receive access to capital, education, mentorship and networking, including a three-day workshop at Tory Burch’s headquarters in New York City, a one-year fellowship program that provides guidance from the Tory Burch foundation, and a $10,000 grant for business education. In addition, the 10 Fellows will participate in a pitch competition, with a panel of judges selecting a single winner of a grant investment of $100,000.
“I’ve learned about the obstacles that women in business face, from balancing work and family to securing financing,” Burch told DailyWorth. “Many also lack the confidence, business networks and training they need to see their ideas through.”
Burch speaks from personal experience. She launched her designer fashion brand from her kitchen; it’s now valued in excess of $3 billion, according to Forbes.
According to a letter from Tory Burch on her foundation’s website, giving back to others by providing resources and tools “can level the playing field for women entrepreneurs and help them to grow their businesses, which will benefit their families, their communities and, in turn, all of us.”
If you know of a good candidate for the Fellows Competition, they can apply here. The application period closes on Jan. 12, 2016.
It’s commendable what Tory Burch is doing to provide opportunities for the next generation of women entrepreneurs. Let us know of other women you believe are doing a good job of giving back to their industries; we’d love to spotlight them in future issues of Inner Circle.