A business group with a mission to help African-American entrepreneurs has named a West Volusia resident as its community development director.
The African American Entrepreneurs Association tapped Yvette Gonzalez Ferrell for the job, effective Nov. 7.
Ferrell, originally from The Bronx in New York, has lived in West Volusia for 33 years and currently lives in DeLand, where residents know her as a member of the family that owned Ferrell Jewelers in Downtown DeLand.
The AAEA said Ferreell has a heart for nonprofit work and seeing others thrive.
Her experience of working on numerous boards and local community programs in Volusia and Flagler counties will be a great asset to both the AAEA members and the level of programs the AAEA will be able to offer locally, the agency said.
Developing community engagement in the local communities will help strengthen the ability of the AAEA to increase its help to African-American business people.
AAEA founder and CEO Leslie Giscombe is excited to work alongside Ferrell.
“I am honored and excited to be able to bring this level of inspired leadership to the local community, with Yvette taking the Flagler/Volusia community development director position,” Giscombe said. “The AAEA is in a significant growth position as we finish up our fifth year, and having Yvette come on board is an excellent opportunity for the association.”
Giscombe added, “Her talents and passion will perfectly fit all that 2023 brings. I know our community is in for a great year with a leader like her who is passionate about serving the community.”
Ferrell’s experience in community service includes membership on DeLand’s Economic Development Committee as well as with the Woman Empowered Initiative and the DeLand Area Chamber of Commerce.
Her passion for seeing entrepreneurs succeed and dedication to equity, inclusion and diversity makes her a valuable asset to the team, the AAEA said.
The AAEA was created to develop and create economic development through entrepreneurship within the underserved African-American community. The nonprofit offers education, mentoring, workshops, group economics and micro-financing opportunities, focusing its partnerships on businesses and organizations that are dedicated to the support of equity, diversity and inclusion.
Anyone with questions about the AAEA is invited to call the office at (386) 234-2014 or to visit www.aaeassociation.org.