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William J. Alcorn Award

WOMEN's BUSINESS ENTERPRISE NATIONAL COUNCIL (WBENC) HONORS GERI SWIFT WITH WILLIAM J. ALCORN AWARD

Highest WBENC Accolade for an Individual Bestowed at 2013 National Conference & Business Fair

Washington, DC 'July 10' the Women's Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC) honored Geri Swift, President of the Women's Business Enterprise Council PA-DE-sNJ (WBEC PA-DE-sNJ), with the William J. Alcorn Award, a singularly prestigious award bestowed by WBENC on an individual for outstanding leadership contributions to its mission. The award ceremony took place at the 'Tribute to Partners' concluding event at WBENC's 2013 National Conference and Business Fair. The annual event is the largest of its kind for women business owners. This year it successfully convened over 3,000 corporations and Women's Business Enterprises (WBEs) in Minneapolis, MN, for the purpose of the developing business opportunities that will fuel the economy.

'Geri Swift is an extraordinary leader whose dedication to preparation, process and alignment to our organization's goals has guided our growth in a changing marketplace,' said Laura Taylor, WBENC Board Chair and Vice President, Strategic Sourcing and Procurement Operations at Pitney Bowes Inc.

Swift is a member of the WBENC Board of Directors and for three years served as Chair of the Leadership Council representing the 14 Regional Partner Organizations that implement WBENC certification across the country, enable WBEs to enhance their skills and take advantage of marketplace access to major corporations and government agencies.

The William J. Alcorn Award was named in honor of WBENC's first Chair of the Board of Directors, William J. Alcorn, retired Senior Vice President and Chief Purchasing Officer of the J.C. Penney Company, for his years of dedication and outstanding leadership. This award recognizes exemplary leadership contributions made by individuals in support of WBENC's mission to open the doors of opportunity in corporate and government contracting to certified Women's Business Enterprises.

About Geri Swift:
Geri Swift is President of the Women's Business Enterprise Council PA-DE-sNJ (WBEC PA-DE-sNJ). She is the founding President of the Women's Business Development Center (WBDC). WBDC, formed in 1995, fosters the development and retention of successful businesses by delivering resources that enable individuals to start new businesses and grow existing ones.

In 1999, under Swift's leadership, the WBDC expanded its programs and created the Women's Business Enterprise Council (WBEC). WBEC, a marketing, procurement and certification assistance council, facilitates the relationship between corporations, government agencies and women-owned businesses.

A WBENC co-founder and regional partner, the WBDC with its WBEC administers WBENC's National Certification Standard in Pennsylvania, Delaware and Southern New Jersey.

Working through her own business, the community, business organizations, and all levels of government and the corporate sector, Swift has played a leadership role in supporting the growth and development of entrepreneurial business ventures.

She has received honors and has been recognized as a Woman's Business Advocate from business and professional organizations. In 1997 Geri served on the Steering Committees that created WBENC and the Association of Women Business Centers. Locally, Swift has served as an appointed member of the Governor Ed Rendell's Minority and Women's Business Opportunity Council. Swift is also an appointed member of Mayor Michael Nutter's Office of Economic Opportunity Advisory Council, the WBENC Board of Directors and the WBEC PA-DE-sNJ.

About WBENC:

Founded in 1997, WBENC is the nation's leader in women's business development and the leading third-party certifier of businesses owned and operated by women, with over 11,000 WBENC-Certified WBEs. WBENC certification is accepted by more than 1,000 corporations representing America's most prestigious brands, in addition to many states, cities and other entities. Throughout the year, WBENC and its 14 Regional Partner Organizations provide opportunities for interactions between more than 650 member corporations, government agencies and thousands of certified WBEs at business building events and other forums. WBENC is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that seeks and accepts donations from corporations, foundations and individuals that support its mission and programs.

PHOTO CAPTION: WBENC William J. Alcorn Award Winner: Geri Swift (L-R) Laura Taylor, Chair WBENC, Pamela Prince-Eason, President, WBENC, Geri Swift, President WBEC PA-DE-sNJ, Bill Acorn, WBENC Chair Emeritus, Cheryl Stevens, Energy Future Holdings

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