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June 12, 2015

Want to see a room full of inspiration? Visit the Veteran Women Igniting the Spirit of Entrepreneurship conference.

Want to see a room full of inspiration? Visit the Veteran Women Igniting the Spirit of Entrepreneurship conference.

Nearly 200 women veterans and military spouses unlocked their inner entrepreneur at the V-WISE conference in Washington, DC

Last week, nearly 200 ambitious women veterans and military spouses came together to explore the world of entrepreneurship. At the Veteran Women Igniting the Spirit of Entrepreneurship (V-WISE) conference at the Mayflower hotel in Washington, DC, attendees learned all about the rewarding and challenging process of launching and maintaining their own small businesses.

The women of V-WISE DC demonstrated such passion for entrepreneurship that their enthusiasm reached even outside of the Mayflower Hotel conference center, as they spread the word with a more than one million followers on social media.
En route to the conference, on May 28, attendees began sharing their excitement for the upcoming weekend on twitter.

As they started to arrive on-site, The Rosie Network helped the women feel at home with a fresh new wardrobe.

The first evening of learning and business lessons began with a networking session and was followed by the opening ceremony. Attendees heard from two V-WISE ‘First’ honorees, Maj. Gen. Irene Trowell-Harris, USAF (Ret) and CSM Michele Jones, US Army (Ret), two women who accomplished many firsts throughout their military careers.

The women later learned about resources for veteran and spouse owned businesses from Barb Carson, Acting Associate Administrator of the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Office of Veterans Business Development, a U.S. Air Force veteran and military spouse. The evening ended with some great music from CAMMO Music and the American Military Spouses Choir.

Day two of V-WISE kicked off with morning yoga, and a keynote session about believing in yourself and your business by Nell Merlino, Founder and President of Count me In for Women’s Economic Independence. Two brave attendees even pitched their businesses to the audience with her guidance.

The day continued with breakout sessions on opportunity recognition, financing, meanwhile 20 previous Boots to Business and V-WISE graduates competed in the Citi Salutes Realizing You Dream Competition semifinals.

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