2020 WBENC National Conference & Business Fair Update
June Event Canceled; WBENC to Host Hybrid Event in November
WBENC has been closely monitoring the COVID-19 pandemic and its impacts on our network and business community.
As this health crisis has evolved, we have been carefully considering our options for the 2020 WBENC National Conference & Business Fair. There are many unknowns about the trajectory of this pandemic, and it’s unclear when our economy and businesses will be able to get back on track.
But it has become clear that hosting this event in June would not be in the best interests of our network, both for the protection of your health and safety but also to respect the financial burdens and restrictions many of you are facing as a result of this economic slowdown.
Thus, we have made the extremely difficult decision to call off the 2020 National Conference & Business Fair in Atlanta.
We are deeply disappointed we will not be able to bring our network together for our largest event of the year, but your health, safety, well-being and livelihood come first.
What comes next?
- First and foremost, we are not backing down on our mission to fuel opportunities for women-owned businesses. That work continues every day. We are working with our Corporate & Government Members and Regional Partner Organizations across the country to develop creative and innovative solutions to facilitate connections within our network and support businesses during this extremely difficult economic environment.
- We are cautiously optimistic that we will collectively weather this storm and are currently planning to host a hybrid WBENC event in November, combining elements of both Summit & Salute and the National Conference & Business Fair. Save the date: November 15 – 18, 2020. We will keep you updated on our progress in planning for November.
- All registered attendees will have the option to defer their registration to the November event, defer to the 2021 National Conference & Business Fair, request a full refund, or donate their registration fees to WBENC. An email with further information and instructions will be sent to all registered attendees within the next two weeks.
- Regarding hotel reservations, please note that all rooms reserved in the WBENC hotel block at the Westin Peachtree Plaza and the Marriott Marquis will be automatically canceled with no cancellation fees. No action is needed on your part.
This is an unprecedented time for WBENC and businesses across the country. We know there are many questions – we will continue to be open and transparent through this process and provide as much information and answers as possible. More information to come as we work through next steps.
In the meantime, we encourage you to review the FAQs here as well as our COVID-19 resources center for a comprehensive list of resources to help our network during this crisis.
We will get through this together. Thank you for putting your trust in us to help fuel business opportunities. When we emerge from this crisis, we know our network will be stronger than ever.