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Meta, Queens Chamber of Commerce host roundtable for borough-based small business owners

Meta and Queens Chamber of Commerce networking event
Small business owners from across the borough gathered in Long Island City for a roundtable discussion hosted by Meta and the Queens Chamber of Commerce. (Photos courtesy of Queens Chamber of Commerce)

Small business owners from across the borough gathered for a networking event hosted by Meta and the Queens Chamber of Commerce in Long Island City late last month.

Participants gathered for lunch at Maiella on Center Boulevard and heard from Meta’s Nicola Mendelsohn, VP of  global business group, about the company’s $50,000 investment in the “NYC Small Biz: Open + Online” program.

Meta currently employs more than 6,000 people in New York and has over 500 open positions across the city. In June, Meta announced the debut of the 2022 Black Visionaries Program, with $650,000 in grants in support of Black artists, Black designers and Black-owned small businesses.

Meta and Queens Chamber of Commerce networking event
Photo courtesy of Queens Chamber of Commerce

“Small businesses are critical and vital members of our communities,” Mendelsohn said. “Women-led small businesses have the potential to remake our societies in the best possible ways. The roundtable event brought Queens businesses together with great momentum, and I’m proud about the connections and opportunities for the businesses ahead.”

During the pandemic, Meta distributed over $6.5 million in COVID-19 grants to small businesses across New York City and gave $100,000 directly to United Way New York City to support their operations. Meta was also one of the founding members of the Queens Tech Council, which launched in February 2021.

Joining Mendelsohn at the meet and greet event were Alvin Bowles, VP of business ecosystem partnerships, and Sandra Altiné, VP of workforce diversity, equity and inclusion.

Meta and Queens Chamber of Commerce networking event
Photo courtesy of Queens Chamber of Commerce

“Ever since we launched our Queens Tech Council, Meta has been an active and engaged partner, always eager to help develop the tech ecosystem in Queens and support small businesses in our community with their tech needs,” Queens Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Tom Grech said. “We are delighted to bring these great Queens small businesses together with Nicola, Alvin and Sandra, and thank them for hosting this thoughtful and productive discussion.”

The small business owners in attendance included, Diana Manalang of Little Chef Little Cafe; Helen Ho of Queens Perennial Flower Shop; Shelly Yang of Form and Flow Yoga; Janel Rhymer of Holy Sweets NYC; Natasha Williams of Cornelius Group Real Estate; Barbara Beckford of Skin Esteem Medical, Aesthetics & IV Infusion Spa; and Condy Cortez of Newtown HQ.

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