SAN ANTONIO, TX – Women-owned businesses are one of the fastest growing sectors in the United States, Latinas leading the charge. And, while the pandemic caused hundreds of thousands of women to drop out of the workforce by the end of 2020, small business ownership jumped 95% from 2020 to 2021, again women were at the helm and Latinas started businesses at a rate 10% higher over the past year. (Forbes) (NWBC) On trend with this “Year of the Entrepreneur,” Latinitas, a nonprofit that empowers all girls to innovate using media and technology, is bringing their signature Startup Chica Conference to San Antonio, TX on Nov. 13, 10:00am to 5:30pm in person at the Geekdom cultivating that same spirit in young, emerging entrepreneurs. The event is open to girls/girl-identifying and non-binary students of color ages 9-14 who will work with mentors and coaches to create a business together. The event will feature presentations from local and national speakers on business development, marketing and finance including Tina Rodriguez, Associate Prepack Manager for Barbie & Girls, of the Barbie Foundation. Latinitas was one of four nonprofits spotlighted globally by The Barbie Dream Gap Project funding campaign this Fall. Startup Chica San Antonio has recruited the city’s most exciting female leaders to coach, mentor and present Latinitas “you have to see it to be it” style. San Antonio’s first lady Erika Prosper, wife of Mayor Ron Niremberg and Director of Consumer Insights at HEB alongside Honorable Judge Rosie Speedlin-Gonzales will judge pitches developed by conference attendees. This year’s keynote is Salena Guipzot, founder of The Boardroom Project, a non-profit organization that presents opportunities for girls to play an active, present and successful role in non-profit/corporate boardrooms. Jordan Maney (All The Days Event Co.), Daniela Madrigal (Fruitypoms), Tina Rodriguez (Barbie), Melanie Mendez- Gonzales (QuemeansWhat), and Samantha Najera (HeartFire Media) will be in attendance as speakers as well. This iteration of Latinitas Startup Chica Conference (it’s 13th!) walks students through the process of starting a business from concept to pitch with the help of culturally reflective and relevant curriculum, mentors and coaches from all aspects of business development. The Startup Chica Conference provides a space for San Antonio’s young entrepreneurs to use their creativity and explore a possible business venture. One of the country’s only bilingual STEAM nonprofit since 2002, Latinitas has been working with young girls/girl-identifying and non-binary students of color to combat stereotypes in media and technology not only based on gender, but also in culture. Event sponsors, all focused on building female leadership in their companies, include Google Fiber, eBay, the Barbie Dream Gap Project and Atlassian. “We are incredibly humbled and excited that San Antonio has opened its doors to Latinitas. We look forward to bringing our signature Startup Chica Conference for the first time to the city of San Antonio and getting to know the young bright minds that will be our next entrepreneurs and leaders” – Beatriz Castillo OPEN TO ALL GIRLS/GIRL IDENTIFYING AND NON-BINARY STUDENTS AGES 9-14: Register to attend or volunteer at www.startupchica.com. Available for interview: Latinitas Program Director, Liliana Cortez Latinitas Program Coordinator, Beatriz Castillo Conference attendees Salena Guipzot – The BoardRoom Project About Latinitas – Austin’s only bilingual STEAM education nonprofit for 20 years, Latinitas, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, has been empowering all girls to innovate through media and technology by providing direct digital media and technology training and esteem-boosting services not only based in gender, but also culture. Latinitas serves 2000 girls, teens and their families annually in Central Texas and 100s more with virtual programs covering 25+ states and other countries such as Colombia, Venezuela and Costa Rica. Exclusively in underfunded communities, Latinitas has partnered widely and strategically in 150+ schools, libraries, community centers and public housing sites providing hundreds of thousands of free STEAM education to many facing the most challenges to education, economic and tech access.