• Groups: Women in Business

  • The Women in Business Affinity Group is a group of strong, smart and supportive business professionals who meet monthly to network and foster personal and professional growth. Different professional development topics are discussed each meeting, facilitated by a group member or local expert.

    Connecting business to business and business to community.  Get to know us and make an impact on your business.

  • Women in Business Affinity Group
  • When Does this Group Meet?

    Starting in January 2021, the Women in Business Affinity Group will meet on the third Friday of every month from 12noon - 1:30 pm.

    Where Does this Group Meet?

    COVID-19 UPDATE - As of June 2021 we have started meeting in person! However, we always have the "plan B" to get back into the virtual world of Zoom! Check out the listing below to see how you can connect with us.


    Want Regular Updates?

    If you'd like to get involved and receive regular updates on what the Women in Business are up to, just send an email to Mark Walden (mwalden@oprfchamber.org) to get added to our mailing list.


  • affinity group women in business 2019
  • 2021 Multi-Chamber Collaborative

    The sentiment, "strong together" couldn't ring more true than in 2020! As we look to planning for 2021, we have joined forces with our neighboring Chambers to combine our vibrant and diverse Women in Business Groups and expand our networks across 5 communities. 

    The four groups who will be participating in our collaboration are:


    • Maywood Chamber of Commerce (represented by Sandra Gates)
    • Berwyn Development Corporation - Chamber Services Division (division director Erika Corona Owens)

    • Forest Park Chamber of Commerce (executive director Laurie Kokenes)

    • OPRF Chamber of Commerce (executive director Liz Holt)‚Äč



    Meetings for 2021

    Each month one of our partners will take on planning, organizing and hosting (on Zoom for now!) a Women in Business meeting. Please see the tentative 2021 plan below. 

    Although we have events listed, we encourage you to please check the Chamber's event calendar to confirm the details of our next gathering.

    Meet our Regular Special Guest!

    We have partnered with the the wonderful people at Riveredge Hospital to start each meeting with their Mindful Ten segment - nourish your soul and feel the LOVE of the group before we dive into the heart of the discussion.

    January 15, 2021 - (12noon - 1:30pm) - hosted by the Berwyn Development Corporation - Chamber Services Division

    Topic & Presenter - On January 15, the Berwyn Chamber Services Division will host an exciting conversation with an innovative leader and change-maker, Luz Canino-Baker, Executive Director of Latinas on the Plaza, a non-profit specializing in Women's Leadership with a focus on accelerating the pathway to success for women of color. CLICK HERE to register.


    February 19, 2021 - (12noon - 1:30pm) - hosted by the OPRF Chamber of Commerce

    Topic & Presenters - On February 19, the OPRF Chamber will host a fabulous lunch-time program with radio host Doris Davenport in conversation with Lynn Allen, founder of Tri-Star Gymnastics and multi-cultural specialist. These two amazing women will talk about how our communities have changed over the past few decades, what it's like to start a black-owned business and their vision for the future. CLICK HERE to register.


    WE WERE IN THE NEWS!! Did you hear? The fabulous Michael Romain wrote all about our February discussion in the Wednesday Journal article "Grappling with race, OPRF Chamber forges allies."

    March 19, 2021 - (12noon - 1:30pm) - hosted by the Maywood Chamber of Commerce

    Presenter - On March 19, the Maywood Chamber of Commerce will host two women-owned businesses from Maywood and discuss how they are hitting 2021 with full force despite the Pandemic. They will chat with Vanessa Jackson, Vice President of marketing firm LemonAd Stand, and Luz Rosas, Owner of a Maywood's Cielito Lindo Coffee Shop. These two women will share the growing pains of starting up a business, insight to forge through a pandemic and practical takeaways to help keep them going! CLICK HERE to register.


    April 16, 2021 - (12noon - 1:30pm) - hosted by the Forest Park Chamber of Commerce


    Topic and Presenter - On April 16 join us for a conversation led by our neighbours to the West - the Forest Park Chamber of Commerce. They will take us through an entertaining and productive networking session. No speakers, just some good old-fashioned networking with a twist. CLICK HERE to register.


    May 21, 2021 - (12noon - 1:30pm) - hosted by the Berwyn Development Corporation - Chamber Services Division

    Presenter - On May 21 come and get all the information you need to learn about starting or refreshing your Business Plans! CLICK HERE to register.


    June 18, 2021 - (9am - 10am NOTE TIME CHANGE) -  hosted by the OPRF Chamber of Commerce

    Presenter - Come out and meet us in-person for the first time this year! We will be coming together and stocking the Oak Park Community Fridge with much needed menstrual products and diapers. Bring a donation, grab a coffee and a little nibble, meet your colleagues that you only know through Zoom!   CLICK HERE for more information.


    July 23, 2021 - (12:15pm - 1:30pm) -  hosted by the the OPRF Chamber of Commerce

    Presenter - We are getting together for a good 'ol fashioned networking lunch! Come along for a great meal and meet up with other fabulous women from our communities!

    CLICK HERE for more information to register.

    August, 2021 - No Meeting this month! The Chamber team and leadership co-chairs are taking a much-needed break and will be back in September. happy summer everyone!


    September 17, 2021 - (12noon - 1:30pm) -   hosted by the Forest Park Chamber of Commerce

    Presenter - Join the Forest Park Chamber of Commerce as they host a networking lunch in heart of Forest Park. 

    CLICK HERE to register to join us!


    October 15, 2021 - (9am - 10am) -   hosted by the OPRF Chamber of Commerce

    Presenter - Join us this month at a NEW Oak Park business - Studio of Art! 

    CLICK HERE to register.

    November 19, 2021 - (12noon - 1:30pm) -   hosted by the OPRF Chamber of Commerce

    Presenter - TBA!


    December 17, 2021 - (12noon - 1:30pm) -   hosted by the OPRF Chamber of Commerce

    Presenter - TBA!


    Do you want to get in touch with a co-chair?

    Do you have a topic that you would like to see discussed? Or would like to touch base with one of our co-chairs? Please feel free to email either Carla Taylor (carla@chomenow.com) or Vicki Scaman (clerkscaman@oak-park.us) and tell them how you can help other women be amazing now!


  • Meet the 2021 Leaders!

    (from left to right)

    Melissa Cleveland, Oak Park Bank

    Carla TaylorBaird & Warner

    Vicki Scaman, Village President, Village of Oak Park

    "Welcome to the Women in Business group! We are ready to hit the ground running, make 2021 memorable and help you be the best that you can be!"




    "The Women in Business Group at the OPRF Chamber is fantastic! Not only do our meetings focus on professional development, the networking and support I've found is solid and meaningful. The meetings are always a highlight of my week, and I leave full of ideas and enthusiasm."

    Tracy Litsey, The Children's School