Two Columbus Business Owners Receive Capital Readiness Grants through Fifth Third Bank’s Empowering Black Futures Neighborhood Program

Mar 16, 2023 10:15 AM ET
People holding big checks and Text: Congratulations! Empowering Black Futures Capital Readiness Grant Awardees. Arthur Norman Jr., Antoinette Parks

Fifth Third Bank presented capital readiness grant awards last week to two Columbus, Ohio-based business owners. The winners were Arthur Norman, Jr. of Dipped Custom Prints and Antoinette Parks of Chef Butcher’s Creole Kitchen, both on the Near East Side.

The two Columbus, Ohio business owners were among 20 selected as part of a capital readiness program in 10 neighborhoods that have received significant investment from Fifth Third Bank. Nine of the neighborhoods, including the Near East Side, are part of the Bank’s $180 million Empowering Black Futures Neighborhood Program; the other is in Detroit, where Fifth Third’s first adopted community, Gratiot/7 mile, is located.

For the capital readiness program, the Association for Enterprise Opportunity selected 20 entrepreneurs to work with the organization to stabilize and grow their businesses. Each entrepreneur will complete Business Health Assessments, access personalized learning plans through AEO’s online learning platform, RESILI™, and receive trusted guidance with AEO’s network of small business coaches. Additionally, each entrepreneur will receive $5,300 in small business grant funding from Fifth Third’s Empowering Black Futures Neighborhood Program.

“I am honored to be given this opportunity so that I may continue to build my knowledge for the growth of my business,” said Antoinette Parks, chef, Butcher’s Creole Kitchen. “I'm always interested in learning and implementing new strategies to make my business foundation and financials strong.”

The grant presentations were covered on the local ABC-6 affiliate in Columbus. Click the links for more information about Fifth Third’s $180 million Empowering Black Futures Neighborhood Program and its Empowering Black Futures Capital Readiness Program with AEO.