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New Orleans Business Alliance - Most Innovative Woman of the Year

Gold Stevie Award Winner 2018, Click to Enter The 2019 Stevie Awards for Women in Business

Company: New Orleans Business Alliance, New Orleans, LA
Company Description: A public-private partnership, New Orleans Business Alliance (NOLABA) is the official economic development agency for the City of New Orleans. Now an accredited economic development organization (AEDO), NOLABA was formed in 2010 through a coalition of business and civic leaders to employ the best practices in economic development to reposition New Orleans as the ideal intersection of commerce and c
Nomination Category: Individual Awards Categories
Nomination Sub Category: Most Innovative Woman of the Year - Government or Non-Profit

Nomination Title: Alejandra Guzman, Vice President of Performance Management & Strategy

Describe for the judges the activities and accomplishments of the nominated woman since the beginning of July last year (up to 525 words):

Alejandra serves as VP of Performance Management & Strategy for theNew Orleans Business Alliance (NOLABA),a public private partnership with the City of New Orleans focused on promoting economic development.

Alejandra works hard to innovateprograms that achieve equitable and inclusive economic growth by attracting new businesses, supporting our workforce and small businesses, and connecting people toopportunity. Innovation is an imperative when it comes to social and economic progress, particularly when working with communities with barriers to access resources. Alejandra has excelled in finding new ways to design programs and connect communities to opportunities.

Her innovations have been catalytic for achieving significant progress in creating enhanced economic security nationally and internationally.In the last 12 months her work has benefited approximately 13,000 people and communicated best practices to an audience of 5 million.

In the last yearher work has been recognized with4 different awardsincluding theIEDC Young Economic Development Professional of the Year, the Biz New Orleans MagazineNew & Notables Recognition, theBest Millennial in Economic Developmentand the“Excelencia” Young Leader Awardby the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Louisiana.

Her key accomplishments in the past 12 months:

-Innovatedthe “New Orleans at the Center” program, a partnership withNext Cityand theAspen Institute, to elevate the New Orleans brand as a place to do business. The program will directly benefit375+ participantsthis year.Through our partner networks the New Orleans brand will reach5+ millionpeople.

-Supported micro-entrepreneurs through her role as President of the Board for

-Fund17.Through this work250+ micro-entrepreneurshave received business services and an affordable Community Business Incubator will be launched serving75+ clients per year.

-Promoted sustainability best practices through her role as Vice President of the Board ofUSGBC Louisiana.Successes this year include theFORWARD conferencethat benefits200+ participantsalong with theGreen Schools Initiativethat has supported over100 schools,300+ teachers and over 35,000 studentsduring the past four years.

-Supports the Hispanic community through her role as Board member for theHispanic Chamber of Commerce of Louisiana(HCCL).This year she was instrumental to secure sponsorship to expand capacity of the Bilingual Workforce Training and Development Program with current capacity toserve 100 workers and 100 small businesses per year.

-Promotes economic and community development best practices through various channelsincluding a monthly column withVIVA NOLA MagazineandForbes blogsreaching50,000+ people annually.

Provide a brief biography of the nominated woman (up to 125 words):

Alejandra is an expert in social responsibility, community development, and new business development. Her main professional focus has been to create and analyze inter-sectorial partnership programs combining non-government organizations (NGO), government agencies, and private sector companies focused on solving community and economic development challenges.During her tenure at CEMEX (NYSE: CX) she designed, implemented and promoted community and economic development programs benefiting 52,000+ people per year in Latin America.

In 2016 she began targeting her efforts to the 350,000+ members of the Greater New Orleans Community whom she serves daily through the New Orleans Business Alliance. Alejandra remains connected to the Latin community via the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and also by writing a monthly column with VIVA NOLA Magazine.