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  • Interview with admirable Maria Solano, Executive Director for the National Latina Business Women’s Association, Inland Empire

Interview with admirable Maria Solano, Executive Director for the National Latina Business Women’s Association, Inland Empire

November 07, 2022


Maria Solano generously shared her admirable professional story, and how her growing membership organization is using SmartMatchApp matchmaking software to increase the quality and quantity of connections for mentoring, education, training and networking. Maria maintains an innate passion for the growing Latina Entrepreneur and the Latino Business Community in which she thrives at building the financial platform of community sponsorships to enable the success of the organization. Maria is also known for her diverse well rounded professional background in the banking industry with over 20 years of experience to speak of. More info about NLBWA-IE, below:

About Maria Solano

Maria began her 20 year banking career with Wells Fargo as a teller working in two locations; Pasadena, and El Monte, California she then earned her way up to a personal banker, business banker then branch manager. As a branch manager, she was tasked with the oversight of operations, sales, and a staff of 30. While working on sales, she exceeded sales expectations which placed her in the Top 10 within the district and Top 25 statewide. Communally she has participated as an advocate for the Hispanic population, having served on the California Hispanic Chambers of Commerce, Procurement & Education Committees, Los Angeles Unified School District, Procurement Advisory Board, Los Angeles Minority Business Opportunity Committee, Procurement, Access to capital, and Education Development, Chaired the Transportation Board Advisory Committee for the Los Angeles County MTA and served as an Advisory Board Member focusing on procurement and access to capital for the Women’s Transportation Coalition.

The National Latina Business Women Association Inland Empire Institute

The National Latina Business Women Association Inland Empire Institute (NLBWA-IE) is a regional nonprofit organization with the purpose of strengthening the success of Latina Entrepreneurs in the Inland Southern California region by offering capacity building, technical assistance, and mentoring services to Latina business owners and professionals. The NLBWA-IE Institute provides professional development that is designed for local businesswomen who are interested in taking their businesses to the next level. Its mission is to enhance the culture, contribution and profitability of local businesses by creating an environment of success through mentoring, education, training and networking.

‘Our members become part of our ever-growing familia and connect with like-minded entrepreneurs’, Maria said.

NLBWA Programs

As an NLBWA member you can participate in many mentoring and networking programs, and events:

- Connect & Elevate is a networking event for the entrepreneur community to connect with other members of the organization and support each other’s endeavors

- Latina BizCon provides resources to Latina & Small Business owners to grow their firms. This in-person & virtual experience offers attendees up-to-date business insights presented by industry experts and fellow entrepreneurs

- The Emerging Latina Entrepreneurial Leadership Program seeks to enable and empower new small business owners with the skills, knowledge, and support necessary to build and maintain a thriving business. The program is offered in both English and Spanish. It consists of 8 weeks, 2-hour sessions per week, which includes some time for networking.

- Latina BizMatch: Inclusive Business Matchmaking at the Latina BizCon is designed for economic development advocates of minority, women, LGBT small businesses located in underserved communities to improve supplier diversity and inclusion by creating meaningful jobs, buying and selling goods and services with other small businesses, increasing economic opportunity in the Inland Empire Region.

- Latina Entrepreneur In Leadership Awards - LEILA is an annual awards gala where local government leaders and the Inland Empire business community come together to recognize local Latina entrepreneurs and celebrate their success, achievements, and their impact on our communities.

- Business Management & Leadership Academy / UCR Micro Mba Program, this highly practical course will be taught by university instructors and will provide entrepreneurs with the key fundamentals of business.

We want to thank Maria for sharing her story and we're proud to have such an amazing client like NLBWA!

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