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Maria Noel is New Chamber Director of Minority Business Assistance
The Chattanooga Area Chamber of Commerce has named Maria Noel as its new Director of Minority Business Assistance. Noel will be the first person to hold this position, which the Chattanooga Chamber has created to lead its newly established Minority Business Assistance Program.
According to Tom Edd Wilson, Chamber president and CEO, Noel’s economic development experience and excellent community connections are key factors that position her for success in launching this new initiative. “The Minority Business Assistance Program can only succeed if area business leaders come together in developing and adopting strategies to foster job creation and positive economic activity among minority-owned companies,” Wilson said. “Maria has a great track record for engaging volunteer leaders in a way that gets things done.”
“I am excited about joining the Chattanooga Chamber team, which has done so much to establish our community as a national player in economic development,” said Noel. “I look forward to working with both the staff and the business community with a goal of supporting Chattanooga’s minority-owned businesses in making our economy into a national model for diversity and business friendliness.”
Ron Harr, the Chamber’s in-coming president and CEO, stressed the importance of the Minority Business Assistance Program. “Our local economy cannot achieve its full potential until everyone in our community realizes his or her full economic potential,” Harr said. “Our Minority Business Assistance Program aims to assist emerging and existing minority business owners and entrepreneurs in maximizing their job and wealth creation in our city.”
According to Noel, her first step will be to engage minority business leaders in building out the plan for the initiative. “The Chamber has a variety of effective programs including one of the nation’s largest and most successful business incubators,” Noel said. “In addition to marketing and adapting these programs to maximize the engagement of minority business owners, we will launch new efforts based on the expressed needs and priorities of the minority business community.”
From 2003 to the present, Maria Noel has worked in economic development for The Enterprise Center where her duties allowed her to build strong connections among both businesspeople and residents in many urban communities. Her work included corporate recruitment, supporting existing industry expansion, communicating economic development incentives, business education, and leveraging public-private partnerships in support of community revitalization. The Renewal Community Program, which she managed, resulted in the construction or renovation of 75 buildings while supporting the creation of over 1,000 jobs. Noel’s business experience also includes more than 25 years in marketing, public relations, and communications. In addition, Noel serves on the Chattanooga Neighborhood Enterprise Board, where she is a member of the Executive, Finance and Governance Committees. She is also Vice President of Programs and Special Events for the Chattanooga Technology Council Board and has served on the Board of the Chattanooga Area Regional Transportation Authority.
A native of Chattanooga, Maria earned a Bachelor of Arts in English Literature from the University of Tennessee-Knoxville. She is a 1988 graduate of Leadership Chattanooga
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Last Update on October 30, 2014 07:33 GMT
ECONOMY-THE DAY AHEAD
WASHINGTON (AP) -- The Labor Department will report today on the number of people who applied for unemployment benefits last week. Economists forecast that weekly applications declined 2,000 to a seasonally adjusted 281,000.
Also today, the Commerce Department will release third-quarter gross domestic product figures. Many economists predict that overall growth of the economy, as measured by the gross domestic product, reached a healthy 3 percent annual rate in the July-September quarter, according to a survey by data firm FactSet.
Freddie Mac will report on average mortgage rates for this week. Last week, the average for the 30-year loan slid to 3.92 percent.
There are four major companies that will report earnings today.
Altria Group and Mastercard will report quarterly financial results before the market opens.
Starbucks and LinkedIn Corp. will report quarterly earnings after the closing bell.
SEOUL, South Korea (AP) -- Samsung Electronics Co. says its third-quarter income has plunged 49 percent to the lowest level in nearly three years as its handset business slows down.
Samsung says its net income for the July-September quarter was 4.2 trillion won ($4 billion), a sharp decline from 8.2 trillion won a year earlier. The income was the lowest since 2012 but above market expectations. Analysts polled by Factset expected 3.7 trillion won income.
Sales fell 20 percent to 47.4 trillion won while operating income shrank 60 percent to 4.1 trillion won.
Samsung warned earlier this month that its handset profit declined despite a marginal shipment increase. Analysts said the Galaxy S5 smartphone launched in April did not sell well while many consumers held off upgrading their phones, instead waiting for new iPhones.
BEIJING (AP) -- China's Cabinet says it will ease restrictions on credit card processing in a move that might help to resolve a lengthy dispute with the United States over access for Visa, Mastercard and other foreign competitors.
A Cabinet announcement said "all qualified domestic and overseas enterprises" will be allowed to apply to set up credit card clearing operations. It gave no details of what qualifications would be required for a foreign competitor to be approved.
Beijing's restrictions have given a near-monopoly on credit card processing to a state-owned entity, UnionPay.
The World Trade Organization ruled two years ago the restrictions treated foreign competitors unfairly. The government said it would review the decision but did little to increase market access.
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- WhatsApp founders Jan Koum and Brian Acton received 116 million shares of Facebook stock currently worth nearly $9 billion when they sold their mobile messaging service to the social networking leader earlier this month.
The breakdown of the big winners in Facebook Inc.'s $22 billion acquisition emerged Wednesday in a regulatory filing.
Koum, a Ukraine immigrant who was once living on welfare, reaped the biggest jackpot with 76.4 million Facebook shares now worth $5.8 billion. That makes him Facebook's fourth largest stockholder behind company CEO Mark Zuckerberg and two mutual funds, Fidelity Management and Vanguard.
Acton, who worked with Koum when they were both Yahoo Inc. engineers, owns 39.7 million Facebook shares worth $3 billion.
More than 45 other WhatsApp current and former employees also received Facebook stock.
WASHINGTON (AP) -- For-profit colleges that don't produce graduates capable of paying off their student loans could soon face the wrath of the federal government.
Schools with career-oriented programs that fail to comply with the new rule being announced today by the Obama administration stand to lose access to federal student-aid programs.
To meet these "gainful employment" standards, a program will have to show that the estimated annual loan payment of a typical graduate doesn't exceed 20 percent of discretionary income, or 8 percent of total earnings.
The Education Department estimates that about 1,400 programs serving 840,000 students won't pass. Nearly all of these programs are offered by for-profit schools.
SUPREME COURT-HEALTH OVERHAUL-SUBSIDIES
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Supreme Court justices have their first chance this week to decide whether they have the appetite for another major fight over President Barack Obama's health care law.
Some of the same players who mounted the first failed effort to kill the law altogether now want the justices to rule that subsidies that help millions of low- and middle-income people afford their premiums under the law are illegal.
The challengers are appealing a unanimous ruling of a three-judge panel of the federal appeals court in Richmond, Virginia, that upheld Internal Revenue Service regulations that allow health-insurance tax credits under the Affordable Care Act for consumers in all 50 states. The appeal is on the agenda for the justices' private conference on Friday, and word of their action could come as early as Monday.
DETROIT (AP) -- The U.S. government's auto safety agency, responding to criticism of its slow response to safety issues, has told the manufacturer of millions of potentially faulty air bags to make replacement parts faster and do more testing to find the cause of the problem.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration sent letters Wednesday to Japanese air bag maker Takata Corp. and 10 automakers seeking information in a widening air bag recall that now covers almost 8 million U.S. vehicles.
The vehicles are equipped with Takata air bags that can potentially inflate with too much force, blowing apart metal canisters and sending shards flying at drivers and passengers. Safety advocates say four people have died due to the problem.
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