By Rolf Boone
The Olympian (Olympia, Wash.)
WWR Article Summary (tl;dr) Female Business ownership is alive and well in Olympia where Beverly Vines-Haines and Charlotte Clary (founders of Ice Chips Candy) have made quite a name for themselves. The two grandmothers who have 41 grandkids between them received a major boost after their Shark Tank appearance for their sugar free candy. Now they are being recognized by the U.S. Small Business Administration for their achievements.
Business owners in Tumwater and the executive director of a nonprofit in Olympia have been recognized by the U.S. Small Business Administration with two awards, including financial services advocate of the year.
The founders of Ice Chips Candy, which makes a sugar-free candy infused with a natural sweetener called xylitol, won the encore entrepreneur award. It recognizes those who started a business after the age of 50, as well as for demonstrating growth, innovation and the potential for more growth.
The founders, Beverly Vines-Haines and Charlotte Clary, have 41 grandchildren between them. They also have appeared on the TV show “Shark Tank,” in which business owners pitch their ideas to a panel of investors.
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The business employs 36 and sells its product throughout the country.
The financial services advocate award went to Lisa Smith, executive director of Enterprise for Equity, the longtime nonprofit in Olympia that helps those with low-income backgrounds become business owners. The program has launched more than 180 businesses.
Those who qualify and complete Enterprise for Equity also are eligible for small loans up to $25,000. Loans are as small as $1,000.
“When these business owners hear their loan has been approved, they hear that someone has believed in them,” Smith said in a statement. “That’s an amazing thing to be a part of and make happen. It brings tears to my eyes.”