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Release Date: October 16, 2014

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TRENTON, N.J. — Accompanied by a group of accomplished business leaders and entrepreneurs who will receive awards for their work, Mayor Eric Jackson kicked off Trenton Business Week (TBW) on October 16. TBW officially begins on Monday, October 20 at the Wyndham with a networking and awards breakfast from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m.


“Small businesses are the lifeblood of economic development and urban revitalization,” said Mayor Jackson. “Trenton has the potential to be a new frontier of investment and economic opportunity in the 21st century that is being shaped by the type of people standing beside me. The city has been built, in part, through their hard work and commitment, and in many ways they hold Trenton’s future in their hands."


TBW runs from Monday, October 20 to Thursday, October 23, 2014, and will feature sessions and events at several sites that enable business owners and entrepreneurs to gain business know-how, network with peers and learn about resources and organizations that support their businesses and entrepreneurial activities. A complete agenda is attached.


According to the New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development, Trenton has 1,869 businesses with an annual average of 23,872 employees and an annual average payroll of $1,203,523,736. The majority of these businesses are small companies with fewer than 10 employees or medium-sized companies with fewer than 100 employees.


On Monday, Mayor Jackson will open TBW by introducing the eight recipients of this year’s Small Business and Creative Marketing Awards at a networking and awards breakfast at the Wyndham.


The first awardee is Michele Siekerka, president of the New Jersey Business & Industry Association (NJBIA). Siekerka will accept the honor on behalf of the NJBIA for service and advocacy to its 20,000 members and for its new headquarters building on Lafayette Street, which has improved the appearance of the downtown area.


The “Small Business of the Year” will be awarded to Crest Paper Products and CEO Francis DiManno. This award is given to a Trenton-based business that is at least three years old and has made significant contributions to the overall economic health of the city. Restaurateur Mario Xiloj, owner of Jireh Restaurant at 687 South Clinton Avenue, will receive the “Most Successful New Business” award for its quality Guatemalan food and service. Photographer Don Addison of Photos by Don will receive the “Trenton Business Ambassador” award, which honors people who have championed business in Trenton, for his many years of success and contributions to the community.


In addition to the business awards, four organizations will receive “Creative Marketing Awards” for their efforts in attracting thousands of people to Trenton. The recipients are Latarsha Burke and Candice Fredericks for the Trenton African-American Festival; Joseph Kuzemka for the Trenton Punk Rock Flea Market and Art All Night; Scott Miller for the Pork Roll Festival; and Estuardo Arriola of the Guatemalan Merchants Association for the Latin Cultural Parade and Festival.


Established in 1993, TBW celebrates and educates businesses and entrepreneurs, attracting approximately 4,000 people each year to the Trenton area. It provides Trenton-area business owners and emerging entrepreneurs with free seminars and workshops to assist them with starting, improving and expanding their businesses in the capital city. Industry experts who have launched and operated successful business ventures lead the seminars and workshops. Representatives from partnering governmental agencies offer advice and resources, including financial incentives, to business owners.


“Trenton Business Week presents an opportunity to support the continued growth and expansion of companies that fuel our economic development strategy, while also attracting new entrepreneurs who are considering making Trenton their home,” said Monique King-Viehland, the city’s director of housing and economic development. “It is a chance to recognize past successes and invest in the promise of Trenton’s economic future.”


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