HEZBA Presient, Reggie Hales. guest speaker OC Issac, VP with VEDC in NY. Photo by Bill Clark

H.E.Z.B.A. Annual Minority Luncheon Bout ‘Business loans’

H.E.Z.B.A. Annual Luncheon-Feb 2016

By Jocelyne Hudson-Brown-Inquiring News-CT

Hartford, CT – (2-26-16) – The 2016 Hartford Enterprise Zone Business Association (HEZBA) annual luncheon exceeded all expectations. This year’s attendance was the largest approaching 150 people to include minority business owners, politicians, government officials, civic and community leaders. This year’s theme. “Your Business. In the Red or Black?”

HEZBA Presient, Reggie Hales. guest speaker OC Issac, VP with VEDC in NY. Photo by Bill Clark

HEZBA President, Reggie Hales, Guest Speaker OC Issac, VP with V.E.D.C. in NY. Photo by Bill Clark

The premier networking event brings also pays homage to Black History Month (BHM) by honoring the African-American experience of the past and paving the road for the future.

A longtime HEZBA supporter Lt. Gov. Nancy Wyman was a guest speaker who talked about the importance of BHM and saluted the Veterans in attendance. On an equally serious note she touched upon topics being discussed at the recent and ongoing Town Hall meetings being held in cities around the state. HEZBA president W. Reggie Hales then presented her with a special award.. A beautiful glass plaque to “Express Our Sincere Appreciation & Salute  Lt. Gov. Nancy Wyma a, Champion for Hartford’s Northend”. Lt. Gov. Wyman was visibly moved by the unexpected gesture.

Hartford’s newly elected Mayor Luke Bronin is also no stranger to HEZBA members as he has attended the luncheon before even becoming mayor. He spoke about what he hopes to get accomplished in Hartford and how the Northend neighborhood will benefit.

Seth Goodall Regional Administrator for the Small Business Association introduced the business owners to the “National African-American Small Business Loan Fund” and encouraged people to contact the SBA directly to get involved.

V.E.D.C. representatives came in from New York to personally present the “Tri-State Business Opportunity Fund” another new opportunity for minority business owners. Hosheus “OC” Issac VP National Strategic Initiatives addressed the crowd.

Another highlight of the HEZBA luncheon was the presentation of an award to Connecticut State Trooped Fred Abrams to “ Express Our Sincere Appreciation & Salute Connecticut State Trooper Mr. Frederick M. Abrams”. Abrams commitment to the community and his fellow minority officers is tireless and has spanned over a 30 year career in law enforcement.

Songstress Barbara Fowler is a always a crowd favorite singing songs full of inspiration and soul as only she can.

The annual HEZBA luncheon continues to get larger and more expansive every year. For those who look forward to attending it seems a bit of a homecoming. “ It feels like family here.” said Lt. Gov. Wyman and that is exactly as it should be! Staring a business or need a loan. Call HEZBA 860-897-5171 or e-mail: inqnews@aol.com

HEZBA 2016 was Sponsored by: Inquiring News-CT •V.E.D.C. •SBA •HEDCO •H.C.T.C. •Uptown Vibz Uptown •Cozy Spot Restaurant •Destiny Awaits Restaurant •Dunns River Restaurant •Pizza-Liquor Outlet •Scott’s Jamaican Bakery •JHB Media & Public Relations •DJ Super Joe

Jocelyne Hudson-Brown is a Society of Professional Journalists Award winner and longtime correspondent for Inquiring News. She can be reached at jhbmpr@yahoo.com.