Women-owned businesses growing in central Indiana; NAWBO conference Monday

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By Nicole Pence

INDIANAPOLIS - Hundreds of entrepreneurs will be in Indianapolis next week for the National Association of Women Business Owners conference.

It is the first time Indianapolis has hosted the event.

Jeryl Mitsch is an interior designer and the President of the National Association of Women Business Owners' chapter in Indianapolis.

"We (Indiana) are raising the bar for women business across the country," said Mitsch.

Mitsch started her business twenty five years ago in Indianapolis. Mitsch now works out of her office in the Indiana Design Center. Mitsch says business just fifteen years ago was more difficult for women.

"We wouldn`t get the work in the early years, and I would always think we were so prepared but some people just felt more comfortable working with men.  Somewhere along the line there was a cultural shift," said Mitsch.

Numbers show women-owned businesses make up about 27 percent of Indiana-based businesses.

Women-owned businesses have grown every year. In fact, 150 new businesses have popped up since 2012, according to Tim Grogg with the Indiana Department of Administration.

Monday's NWABO conference will bring nearly five hundred women from across the country to Indianapolis.

Mitsch says conference attendees will talk about what's working well in Indiana and tips for women interested in starting or expanding their business.

"Over 50 percent of the population of people working in Indiana are women, but Indiana has only 4 percent women are CEOs. You never know when you are going to meet someone that you might get a biggest of information that can transform your life or you business," said Mitsch.

Registration for the conference is still open. Attendees can join both days or specific events.