People Profiles|Felicia Slaton-Young

As the co-founder and executive director of the Greater Englewood Chamber of Commerce, Felicia Slaton-Young, a resident of Englewood for nearly 30 years, knows that her neighborhood’s future hinges on a thriving business community.  “If you have a stronger business community, you’re able to build a workforce, which leads to more jobs, which leads to the economic growth of that community. If it’s not there, build it.”

Felicia did just that and, in January 2017, officially launched the Chamber to support Greater Englewood’s new and existing businesses, and to help the community transform itself into a popular commercial and retail destination.  The organization acts as a comprehensive economic development partner by advising, developing and showcasing Greater Englewood’s established businesses.  It also helps create a favorable social environment for Chamber members by hosting monthly “Happy Hour Hump Day” networking events that connect local business owners with each other and the community.

In addition to her work with the Chamber, Felicia, who holds a BBA from Savannah State University and a MBA from Webster University, works as a financial advisor with Edward Jones.  She proactively shares her business acumen with others in the community whenever possible and, among other things, was part of the selection committee for last year’s Englewood Quality of Life Business Plan Competition presented by Teamwork Englewood.  The competition awarded Englewood-based small business owners and entrepreneurs funding for their innovative ideas.

“We want other people in the Chicago area to know that Englewood is more than what you see on the news.  That is just a small percentage of what’s here.  We are business people, educators, mothers, sisters, brothers, dads, who all want the same thing—to live in a loving, thriving community.  It takes a collective effort to get that done.  We’re here to change that voice and that vision.”

This is #EnglewoodRising.

Photography by Tonika Johnson