Ask anyone in the Hispanic business community who Ana with Transformando West Michigan is,
and they’ll be sure to know her. Ana Jose, Program Manager of Transformando West Michigan, is a titanic force in the Latinx business community. She enables business owners to transform their dreams into reality. The U.S. Green Building Council of West Michigan is thrilled to acknowledge the Transformando West Michigan program with the 2030 Leadership Award for 2019.
The West Michigan Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, operating for 15 years and counting, facilitates a number of programs and services which serve West Michigan’s Hispanic community. The Transformando West Michigan program launched in 2018, with the objective of assisting and empowering Hispanic business owners to grow their businesses. Ana Jose works to help these individuals navigate the world of business in a culturally competent and sensitive manner. Hispanic-owned businesses accounted for nearly $326.7 million in sales in 2012 in Kent County, according to an article by Rachel Watson of the Grand Rapids Business Journal. As such, it pays to invest in the business interests of Hispanic business owners. Ana Jose had the foresight to observe the impact sustainable practices have on the longevity of a business.
In Ana Jose’s eyes, the opportunity was blatant, “You can’t grow if you don’t know how the system works.” Ana facilitated breakfasts, workshops, financing meetings, and one-on-ones with the Grand Rapids 2030 District (GR2030) and Energy Assistance Program to bring sustainability resources straight to her clients. Ana embraces sustainability as an important measure in the Transformando curriculum. Ana Jose leveraged the existing resources of the GR2030 District and Energy Assistance Program to bolster the operating expense management skills of her clients.
The West Michigan Hispanic Chamber of Commerce is a voice of representation and gathering place for Hispanic business owners to find new opportunities and grow their businesses. Ana Jose and her team are dedicated members of the Latinx community and work every day to empower business owners to realize a brighter future than they could have imagined.