About Women Business Owners of North FL

WBO is recognized as the premier women's entrepreneurial organization in North Florida, increasing recognition of women business owners and their successes and encouraging ownership by women in business. Our Mission is to inspire women business owners to grow through networking, education, and support.

Upcoming Events

1/6   Area Roundtable

1/13 Happy Hour *NEW*

1/24 Dinner Meeting

WBO January 2022 Insight Newsletter

President's Message

From Bonnie Vande Velde

We have a fresh start upon us!  A new day, week, month, quarter, and year all are opportunities for us to grow our businesses and opportunities to learn new things.  There are new opportunities coming from WBO and for WBO, we have said goodbye to many things in 2021, now it is truly time to soar!  We are working on a plan to make it easier for Single mother business owners to become part of WBO, we are working on unveiling a new WBO branding, new social media reaches and our spring retreat.  There are many new things coming for all of us, new children, grandchildren, employees, business deals/contracts and so much more! 

Please take time to have a look at your business goals for each quarter and for the year.  Our goals are important because they help us to set a course of action.  With a course planned out, our minds can be opened to consider new opportunities that may help us achieve even more.  If you are at the beginning of your year and don’t have a plan for at least the next 12 months, please come and talk to me at the January dinner meeting or email me and let me know you are struggling.  I will personally help or pair you up with someone else better suited to help you in your particular industry.  

We are an organization to help each other succeed and we truly want that to happen for you and your business.  If you are available to help struggling or new business owners or if you need or want help for 2022 planning here is my contact information!

Office: 904-406-7065 x104

Cell:  904-456-3981

Email:  president@wbonfl.org

I look forward to hearing from all of you!


    January Dinner Meeting

    Monday, January 24, 2022

    Dinner Program

    Topic: Build your Business by Building Relationships

    Mark Your Calendars!

    5:30 - 6:00 pm Networking  

    6:00 - 8:00 pm Dinner and Program

    WBO Members - $35
    WBO Guests - $40
    Visitors - $45

    Maggiano's Little Italy (Town Center) 

    10367 Midtown Parkway, Jacksonville, FL 32246

    The dinner registration deadline is Wednesday, January 19th


    Ceasar Salad

    Protein (Grilled Chicken with Tomatoes and Basil served with Garlic Broccoli and Vesuvio Potatoes)


    Vegetarian (Eggplant Parmesan over Spaghetti Marinara Sauce)

    Dessert (Chef's Choice)

    Rolls & Butter

    Water/Tea/Coffee Included

    Individually plated meals  *  Cash Bar until 7:15 pm *  No special orders

    Don't forget to bring your Door Prize!

    Keynote Speaker

    Mary Owens, MSW, CTACC

    Mary’s mission in life is supporting women who are experiencing a significant life change. She’s a life transitions expert with years of experience coaching women to manage all the emotions and overwhelm that come with change. She helps women develop a positive mindset, so they start to take action and move confidently toward the next chapter in their lives, be it business or personal.

    In her presentation, she’ll share three tools to successfully navigate change, which hundreds of Mary’s clients use to overcome tremendous challenges and make amazing life transitions. 

    Spotlight Speaker

    Pixie Larizza 

    Licensed massage therapist, massage director, artist & designer, Holistic counselor, certified color therapist, relaxation and mind-body expert. Business owner since 1990.

    My careers have provided me opportunities for exploration of Self.  Along this journey I have encountered many obstacles and worked with thousands of clients and students, each on their own journey.  Join me at this month’s WBO meeting for a look at lessons learned and how to step into oneself graciously.

    Area Roundtable Meetings

    Mark Your Calendars for the First Thursday of the Month!

    Thursday, January 6, 2022

    11:45 am - 1:00 pm



    Fogo De Chão (Town Center)

    4784 Town Center Pkwy, Jacksonville FL 32246 

    $21.50 (includes lunch)

    Guest Speaker:  Karen Brune Mathis, Financial News & Daily Record

    Deadline to register is Monday, January 3rd. Must pay online. NO WALK UPS



    Happy Hours

    Mark Your Calendars for the Second Thursday of the Month!

    Thursday, January 13, 2022

    5:00 - 7:00 p.m.

    Crispy's Springfield Gallery

    1735 Main Street N.

    Jacksonville, FL 32206

    Something NEW for the NEW year, WBO Happy Hours, every second Thursdays, 5:00-7:00 p.m., at different areas of Jacksonville every month.

    Our FIRST WBO Happy Hour will be on Thursday, January 13th at Crispy’s Springfield Gallery. The agenda is simple - MAKE CONNECTIONS and get to know one another. We have a section with a fabulous server, Ashley, in the back right corner. No RSVP needed. Pay for your own drinks/food and tip our server. All drinks are $1.00 off. Check out the menu HERE.  


    Save the Date

    Spring Speaker Series 2022

    The Spring Speaker Series (formerly known as the Spring Retreat), will be held on April 8, 2022 from 9:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Check-in begins at 8 a.m. 

    We are currently reaching out to members who we would like to have speak. We have secured a keynote speaker, Mary Owens, who will also be our January speaker, so we’ll all get a taste of her then. 

    We have secured the venue for the Spring Retreat:

    Hyatt Place St. Johns Town Center

    4742 Town Center Pkwy, Jacksonville, FL 32246

    (904) 641-7200

    Strategic Partnerships

    Jim Moran Institute

    Small Business Executive Program

    The Jim Moran Institute for Global Entrepreneurship is accepting applications for the Small Business Executive Program (SBEP). This program helps business owners and CEOs to think differently and be more efficient in their decision making. Focused on growth, leadership expertise and financial success, SBEP participants explore a broad range of topics: marketing, human resources, exit strategy, intellectual property, and strategic planning. 

    ·   What you can expect - You will assess your company's position, develop long-term strategies, and create practical action plans. You will reinforce business fundamentals and examine strategies and best practices from an executive’s perspective.

    ·   Who is right for the program - Ideal for CEOs, presidents, business owners and entrepreneurs. Candidates must be actively involved in running the business.

    ·   Build your network - You and your peers will learn and work together, creating a powerful network that can last a lifetime. SBEP graduates have the opportunity to join a peer-to-peer group, and are regularly invited to programs, conferences, and other events.

    Businesses operating for three years or more and with five or more employees are eligible to apply. Up to twenty participants from non-competing businesses will be accepted into the four-month program. Sessions will take place once a month for four hours. The first session starts February 24 and runs through May 26, 2022. The deadline to apply is Feb. 4. There is no cost to participate. 

    Click Here for More Information or to Apply


    Welcome Melinda!

    Melinda Powers

    Business Consultant

    SBDC at UNF

    Technology Tip

    "Microsoft Launched Windows 11...

    Now What?"

    As the Windows 11 Operating System is rolling out and you don’t want to do it, as stated previously, you don’t have to.  Windows 10 will exist in a supported version until at least October 14, 2025.  For those of you who may have purchased new equipment recently with W10 on it that means 4 years of use at a minimum for that new equipment.  That is a little more than the average life span of a windows laptop that gets daily use. It also exceeds the typical depreciation schedule for computer equipment for tax purposes and you don’t have to worry about being cutoff prematurely.

    If you are curious about Windows 11 and its 64-bit applications-only environment, here is a good article to read: CLICK HERE

    Worth Mentioning

    2022 Top Entrepreneur

    Are you a Top Entrepreneur?

    Owning a business is like walking a tricky tight rope. It takes smarts, drive, a healthy helping of guts plus the ability to lead others to help achieve your vision.

    CLICK HERE for more information or to nominate. 

    Spotlight Opportunities

    Want to put a spotlight on your business?

    Take a few minutes before one of our dinner meetings to let us know what you do, why you do it, and what you have to offer.

    The cost is only $50 for the 5-minute spot. Your photo and bio will appear in the newsletter as well as on the website.

    All you need to do is contact your Programs Director, Diane Faulkner, at ProgramsChair@wbonfl.org. Include your high-resolution photo and up to 100-word bio.

    Current open dates are:

    February 28

    March 28

    May 23 (we need 2 Spotlight Speakers for this meeting)

    June 27

    July 25

    We look forward to learning more about you and your business!


    Member Birthdays

    Happy Birthday to You!

    1/1   Kerstin A. Chelius

    1/6   Barbara Freeland

    1/10 Nonie Larson

    1/16 Melinda B. Powers

    1/19 Teresa Mask

    1/21 Alicea Cosmos

    1/22 Demika Jackson

    1/25 Vicky Zelen

    1/25 Katharyn Woods

    1/29 Stephanie Royal

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    P.O. Box 16372, Jacksonville, FL 32245 | Phone: 904.701.2564