Brought to you by Square
Monday, June 5, 2023
7580 NE 4th Court #111, Miami, FL
Together we go further.
Join us for The Forward Forum, a day of thoughtful discussion, community building, and celebrating our 2023 FORWARD accelerator cohort.
Network, sip and share ideas, and hear from special guests and speakers on all things entrepreneurship and moving your business forward.
Special guests include Earn Your Leisure hosts Rashad Bilal and Troy Millings, chef, author and entrepreneur Ayesha Curry, plus more.
Reception + Mingle
Grab a mimosa, mingle, and meet the faces of the 2023 FORWARD Cohort and other fellow entrepreneurs.
Opening Remarks + Celebrating FORWARD
It’s time to celebrate the 2023 Cohort of Black and Latino entrepreneurs and their graduation from the FORWARD program. We’ll take a moment to recognize their hard work, be inspired, and focus on what’s next.
Panel + AMA
A panel discussion with Ayesha Curry, Troy Millings and Rashad Bilal from Earn Your Leisure, and Manny Portuondo, owner of Cerveceria La Tropical.
We’ll cover the current and future landscape of entrepreneurship, how to take your next step, and getting the pieces in place to get there.
A Q&A with the audience will follow — bring your questions and keep the conversation moving forward.
Bite-sized Business + Brunch
Network with local Miami Square business owners, learn about the businesses belonging to the 2023 Cohort, and leave your words of inspiration in the Hype Booth.
In between, enjoy brunch with tunes spun by local DJs and coffee and cocktails by Sweet July.
Closing Remarks + Looking Forward
Ayesha is a renowned restaurateur, chef, two-time New York Times bestselling author, producer, host, entrepreneur, and has been featured on the prestigious Forbes 30 Under 30 list. Ayesha is also the founder and CEO of Sweet July, her burgeoning lifestyle brand, complete with a quarterly magazine and brick-and-mortar storefront and café. Since then, the Sweet July brand has expanded to include Sweet July Productions and Sweet July Books.
Troy Millings from Earn Your Leisure
Troy was born in the South Bronx, and from an early age, music influenced his education. He taught for 16 years, and in the midst, realized there was a need to expand financial literacy education outside of the traditional classroom setting. With his lifelong friend Rashad Bilal, Troy started Earn Your Leisure, which has grown into one of the top business platforms in the world with its own podcast network, a top business podcast, and an online educational platform.
Rashad Bilal from Earn Your Leisure
From a young age Rashad learned the importance of financial literacy and realized that he wanted to translate his knowledge into actions. After attending college he became a financial advisor, and later, he and his lifelong friend Troy Millings started Earn Your Leisure. With three Top 100 podcasts under its umbrella and over two million followers, EYL is a revolutionary educational media platform giving rise to emerging and established creators from business, finance, and entrepreneurship.
Naomi Wheeless, global head of customer success, Square
Naomi is a visionary business executive with a deep focus on operations, go-to-market strategy, sales, digital transformation, and maximizing the customer experience. As global head of customer success at Square, Naomi leads the company’s largest organization of nearly 2,000 employees spread across 13 countries. She oversees all of the customer-facing operations that empower and support millions of Square sellers in their endeavors to start, run, grow, and adapt their businesses successfully.
Manny Portuondo, owner, Cerveceria La Tropical
Manny is founder and CEO of Three Palms Holdings LLC and owner of Cerveceria La Tropical, Cuba’s oldest brewery, established in 1888. He created and developed a worldwide legal and market strategy to regain control of the La Tropical brand (a beer brand which had been nationalized by communist Cuba in 1960) and, in the process, helped create a new Cuban beer category. In 2017 Manny sold a majority stake of La Tropical to Heineken N.V. and formed a joint venture (La Tropical Holdings B.V.), for which he is now the CEO and Board Director.
Brought to you by Square
FORWARD is an accelerator program by Square for Black and Latino small businesses in the retail sector, in collaboration with Social Change Fund United, 1863 Ventures, and American Express.
We’re doing our part to increase access to the necessary capital, products, financial literacy, and coaching to help achieve business success and sustainability.
The more Black and Latino entrepreneurs receive support, the more their businesses grow and the more we all move forward.
From the first little white reader to today’s entire ecosystem of hardware and software, we help businesses run things on their own terms.
That’s our mission — empowering all businesses. We believe everyone should have access to the economy and be able to participate and thrive.