By C. Lambert

The Women in Business group will hold its 1st Annual Women in Business Expo, Thursday, Nov 4, 2010 at the Atrium Restaurant in Bay City from 4:00-8:00pm. Hors d’oeuvres and a cash bar will be available for all who attend with a raffle for baskets containing items from various shops that are owned and operated by the Bay Area professional women in the group. Donations for the baskets will go to the Coats for Kids project.

"We are very excited about the expo," says Mona Partlo, founder of the group. They are putting on the expo to coincide with the Downtown Art Walk to get the best possible exposure to promote their businesses. There will be 24 booths showcasing what they produce from each company in the cooperative which include, Dancing Glass, Revitalize Yourself, Little Muffin, The Loft, Time for a Change, Second Debut, to name a few.

Says Partlo, "A year ago I decided that women in business needed inexpensive advertising so I put out a flyer and sold advertising to 20 to 30 businesses owned by women for the small fee of $10. Today we have a wonderful group of 28 members who are all leaders and have guts…they are truly go-getters. We are women supporting women and a lot of our businesses interconnect…we have become the glue of our community. When you have a business of your own you are isolated but in our group we get together and share ideas."

Partlo insists that in these hard economic times anything done to help each other to provide services to the community with their unique shops that offer services as well as merchandise at an affordable price will help. Women tend not to compete with each other as men do, they are more respectful and don't cross onto someone else's territory… there's a great deal of comaraderie, so women are happy to refer customers to each others' businesses.

"Networking is the key for business success and the women in this group all have a lot of get-up-and-go. I love business, its creative and has no ceiling, it can grow and grow and grow…its all what you put into it…and these women have done well and they love what they do," says Partlo.

The expo is open to the general public and you don't have to own a business to attend as the group is hoping for customers as well as contacts.

The Women in Business group meets the second Wednesday of each month and are held at each others businesses so they can see each others' products and services. For more information on the group or the expo, contact co-presidents Nancy Schafer 894 4501 or Margo Charlevois 895-4420.