17th Annual National IES

You're Invited!

17th Annual National IES

About the Event:

You are cordially invited to the 17th Annual National Immigrant Entrepreneurs Summit (IES)!

The Immigrant Entrepreneurs Summit’s mission is to bring businesses of diverse backgrounds together to share, learn, and celebrate the immigrant entrepreneurship experience and contribution to the overall community. 

IES is a one-day summit and community gathering of businesspeople of all backgrounds and expertise, getting together in one event to highlight the important aspects of running a successful business.

Join in with 800 attendees, representing 50 different counties of origin!

What You Can Expect:

  • 21 Seminars – Multiple tracks of workshops for people to gain practical knowledge that can be applied to their business, including Spanish.
  • Exhibitor Hall – A platform for networking and knowledge exchange.
  • Luncheon Awards – Discover role models in our community who are an inspiration for others to follow, showing the diversity of success.
  • Underwriting Exposed  – Business pitch competition of small, immigrant-owned businesses in their startup business by offering a grant of $5,000 per winner and showing the thought processes of loan underwriters.

View the workshop and speaker schedule below.

Sponsorship & Exhibitor Opportunities are available. Contact us to learn more!


Catherine Tran
Executive Director
(515) 732-8433

Workshop Schedule

Immigrant Entrepreneurs Summit is going to show how bankers think out loud before giving you a loan for your business.

Three new immigrant business owners will compete and show the judges why they deserve $5,000 by presenting their personal story, business plan, and three year business projections.

To apply for the Pitch, go to Compete – Immigrant Entrepreneurs Summit (iesusa.org)

Past Speakers

Governor Kim Reynolds

Governor of Iowa

Governor Kim Reynolds is the 43rd governor of Iowa and has the distinction of being the first woman elected to the state’s highest office. She was elected in November 2018 to her first full term in office and re-elected in November 2022 to a second term. Governor Reynolds is proud of her Iowa roots. A small-town, rural Iowan at heart, she grew up in Madison County, married her husband Kevin Reynolds in 1982, worked and raised three daughters, and completed her bachelor’s degree from Iowa State University.

Terry Branstad

Former U.S. Ambassador to China

Terry Branstad is the former U.S. Ambassador to China (2017-2020), and the longest serving governor in the history of the United States (1983-1999/2011-2017).  He is a founding partner of the Branstad Churchill Group, a strategic consulting firm that provides advice, guidance and solutions to organizations, corporate leaders and investors seeking to navigate the complexities associated with conducting business in China and the United States.

Bill Adamowski

Drake University

Bill Adamowski is a proven CEO/President/Catalyst of Entrepreneurial Ventures with a track record of growing revenue and driving successful exits. He currently serves as Executive Director of Entrepreneurship, innovation, and human centered design at Drake University’s College of Business and Public Administration (CBPA). He oversees the Drake Business Accelerator, New programs aim to bring world-class entrepreneurship education to underserved small business owners.

Jayne Armstrong

SBA Iowa District Office

Bill Adamowski is a proven CEO/President/Catalyst of Entrepreneurial Ventures with a track record of growing revenue and driving successful exits. He currently serves as Executive Director of Entrepreneurship, innovation, and human centered design at Drake University’s College of Business and Public Administration (CBPA). He oversees the Drake Business Accelerator, New programs aim to bring world-class entrepreneurship education to underserved small business owners.

Anthony Arrington

Top RANK Culture

Anthony Arrington is a Certified Diversity Executive (CDE)®, Certified Diversity Facilitator (CDF), and Certified Culture Assessor (CCA). He has over 25 years of leadership, training, and consulting experience across multiple industries. Anthony has worked with organizations to motivate a change in culture through crucial dialogue. He skillfully uses facilitation, consulting, coaching, assessments, and storytelling to help organizations transform their thinking, understand the value of DEI&B.

Jacki Boldt

Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Iowa

Jacki Boldt is the Executive Director for the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Program in Iowa and has worked with the program since it originated in Iowa in 2019. She joined Des Moines Area Community College in 2008 and most recently worked as a Business Consultant where she assisted small businesses with workforce development and employee training initiatives. Jacki earned her MS in Business Analytics from University of Iowa and holds bachelor’s degrees in Business and Secondary Education.

Igor Cavlovic

Two Rivers Bank & Trust

Igor Cavlovic is from Bosnia and Herzegovina. He is the AVP Commercial Banking Officer for Two Rivers Bank & Trust, and specializes in business lending, SBA lending, and business banking. He is also an experienced senior branch manager with a demonstrated history of working in the banking industry. He is skilled in loans, consumer lending, business lending, coaching, banking, and sales. He serves on the IES Planning Team.

Eve Durand

Fredrikson & Byron, P.A.

Eve Durand has experience strategically navigating global patent portfolios encompassing a variety of technologies. She works closely with clients to understand the scope of their intellectual property, their priorities and goals, and maximize their intellectual property protection. Her engineering background and business-focused approach allows her to understand emerging technologies and inventions, as well as counsel clients in different strategies to safeguard their intellectual property.

Lori Day

FocusFirst, Inc.

Lori Day is known for business leadership, management, coaching and consulting. A three-time entrepreneur, she’s held executive positions in sales, service, and operations in Fortune 500 corporations. In 2002 she launched FocusFirst, Inc. to bring right-sized solutions to organizations and individuals that are typically accessible only to large firms. A recognized leader of entrepreneurship and leadership, Lori understands how to drive sustainable results incorporating vision, people and processes.

M Alomgir Hossain

Solidarity Microfinance

Alomgir Hossain, with over 35 years of international experience in microfinance and development, began his career in Grameen Bank alongside Nobel laureate Professor Muhammad Yunus. He played key roles in establishing microfinance organizations in the USA, Guatemala, and Puerto Rico. Alomgir holds an MBA and an MS degree. He assumed the role of Executive Director of Solidarity Microfinance at Iowa Community Capital in March 2015.

Christy Jones

SCORE Des Moines

Christy Jones is a successful business coach with the Accelerate ActionCOACH team and a dedicated volunteer mentor with SCORE. Growing up in the body shop, she watched her dad, mom, and uncle provide a necessary service to those in need. In 2015, Christy became the first female-owned body shop owner in Des Moines when she purchased the business from her family. In March 2021, Christy sold all three shops and briefly retired before joining the Accelerate ActionCOACH team.

Colleen Kinsey


Colleen Kinsey is a Des Moines native, co-founder and CXO of Softvoya. Her mission is to help lower the barriers of entry for tech entrepreneurship through design thinking and iterative development releases. She’s an avid traveler, having been to 46 countries to date, and passionate about innovatively solving user problems at a global level across industries. 

Paul Koeniguer

Paul Koeniguer

SCORE Des Moines

Paul Koeniguer is a business owner, entrepreneur, and partner in FocusFirst, Inc. A recognized leader across all aspects of sales, sales management, motivation, training, and incentives, Paul has developed national sales champions in diverse industries. His exceptional expertise helping businesses and individuals achieve business and sales goals. A SCORE volunteer since 2009, Paul is passionate about helping entrepreneurs make informed decisions for their business.

Grace Manzione

Fredrikson & Byron, P.A.

Grace Manzione represents clients of all sizes, ranging from startups to large private and public companies with business formation and organization, corporate governance, capital raising transactions and general corporate matters. She has experience representing clients in growing industry sectors, and has served as associate counsel on over 20 deals of varying size and structure with an aggregate value exceeding $300 million.

John Martin Sr

Teamstrong inc

John Martin Sr. for years has established himself as a heavyweight in the branding/marketing world with mastermind precision. As CEO of TeamStrong Inc., he has worked and developed several companies all over the United States, creating and implementing marketing plans with unique approaches, and a knack for building excellence. He has often been told that “everything he touches turns to gold”.

Joey Norris

Dream Forge

Joey Norris holds a bachelor’s degree in aerospace engineering from Iowa State University. In 2015, he founded Dream Forge, LLC, an engineering firm focused on early-stage product development. Joey’s initial Dream Forge work involved transforming 2D sketches into 3D models, turning those digital models into prototypes, and testing those prototypes for form and function. His recent projects include small farm implements and electrically secured pharmaceutical storage.

Victor Oyervides

America's SBDC Iowa

Víctor Oyervides es consejero de desarrollo de empresas minoritarias en el SBDC de Estados Unidos en Iowa. Actualmente, en su función de Consejero de Desarrollo de Empresas Minoritarias, brinda oportunidades y programas educativos, consultas y asistencia técnica para propietarios de pequeñas empresas propiedad de minorías, empresarios y comunidades que buscan construir economías minoristas locales más sólidas. Su pasión ha sido y sigue siendo equipar, empoderar y orientar a pequeñas y medianas empresas.

Silas Pippitt

Red 11 Media

Silas Pippitt owns Red 11 Media, a digital marketing agency in Des Moines. He has over ten years of experience growing businesses with video and digital marketing. Silas has become a trusted advisor to a variety of small businesses, helping them leverage digital marketing to grow, and he has scaled clients’ YouTube channels to over 100,000 subscribers and millions of views. Silas also serves as a lecturer at the Iowa State Ivy College of Business, where he teaches digital marketing.

Yaneth Rodriguez

Community CPA

Yaneth Rodriguez procedente de Venezuela, con estudios profesionales y graduada en el 2002 en Contaduría y Administración Tributaria en la Universidad de Zulia – Venezuela. Amplia experiencia en el campo contable, trabajando para el Banco Central de Venezuela en el Departamento de Análisis Variables Macro Económicas.  Actualmente, Ejerce su cargo de preparador de impuestos en Community CPA  desde el 2021. Yaneth, es voluntaria en múltiples asociaciones promoviendo siempre el apoyo a nuestra comunidad y nuevos inmigrantes.

Ying Sa

Community CPA

Ying Sa was born in Beijing, China, immigrated to Canada before relocating to the United States. She started Community CPA in 1998 in Des Moines, Iowa. The firm now has branches in Coralville, IA, and Bloomington, MN, and has received many awards for excellence. Ying is a published author of Appointment with Ying at 8am on starting a business, and is releasing her newest book, Appointment with Ying at 10am on growing a business.

Darwin Salas

La Q Buena

Darwin Salas es el propietario y director ejecutivo de Salas Investment Group, Salas Enterprises, Panamerican Broadcasting y Iowa Demon Hawks. Nació en la Ciudad de México y emigró a Los Ángeles, California. Darwin obtuvo una doble especialización en Finanzas y Marketing en 1999 en la Universidad Estatal de California Northridge y un MBA en la Universidad de California en Los Ángeles en 2001. Antes de convertirse en empresario, trabajó como Analista Financiero en Viacom Paramount Pictures, Director de Finanzas de Fonovisa.

Claudia Schabel

Schabel Solutions

Claudia Schabel, CEO of Schabel Solutions, is a diversity, equity, and inclusion consultant with 20+ years of experience in Fortune 100 and Fortune 500 companies. Born in Brazil, she holds a BA in International Relations from Drake University and recently received the 2023 Business Record – Iowa State University Ivy College of Business Woman Business Owner of the Year Award.

Sneha Singh

JS Impact LLC

Sneha Singh is an Asian Indian who has been living in USA since 2010. She is an independent consultant and a social entrepreneur with many years of experience in community development and outreach. As a socially trained research professional with passion to help communities, she aspires to help businesses and families understand the need to manage risks and insecurities through innovative products.

Kym Stevenson

Iowa Economic Development Authority

Kymberly Stevenson is the Targeted Small Business Development Program Manager for the Iowa Economic Development Authority (IEDA). As a business development manager, she is responsible for providing Iowa’s small business owners with the resources need to start, grow, and sustain their business. She administers the TSB Certification and Microloan Programs.

David Tracy

Iowa Center for Economic Success

David Tracy is a serial-entrepreneur and an award-winning marketing and advertising strategist. His specialty is curating effective, in-depth marketing campaigns that bridge international and cultural gaps. David works directly with The Iowa Center clients in one-on-one business coaching sessions and by teaching a monthly session of Always Ready: Marketing.

Jessica Trinidad

TeamStrong Inc.

Jessica Trinidad has established herself as one of the top nationally recognized voice actresses stemming from a voiceover acting career spanning over 10 years. Jessica decided to develop her career in voice-over work in 2009. She has become a professional voice actress who has provided her voice to household names such as McDonalds, Wells Fargo, and Johnson and Johnson.

David Won

Budget Captain

Dave Won is a money expert and the Founder and CEO of Budget Captain, a financial wellness company helping individuals eliminate credit card debt and stop living paycheck to paycheck. As a son of South Korean immigrants, Dave knows what it’s like to live with money stress on a daily basis. He is on a mission to equip people with the necessary tools to live an abundant lives filled with contentment, purpose and intentionality.

2023 Sponsors

Presenting Sponsors

Partner Sponsors

Entrepreneur Sponsors

Business Advocate Sponsors


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