In the News

RiseUp Springfield Launches to Accelerate the Growth of Established Small Minority-Owned Businesses

Monday, August 21, 2017

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno, the Association of Black Business & Professionals (ABBP), and the Springfield Regional Commerce, in collaboration with Interise, announce ‘RiseUp Springfield’.

RiseUp Springfield is a seven-month intensive, hands-on program for established small business owners. The program is powered by Interise’s StreetWise ‘MBA’™ curriculum, which provides established small business owners with the knowledge and know-how needed to manage long-term growth strategies.

RiseUp Springfield will provide Springfield-area participants with tools to advance their business operations, financial management, marketing and sales, human resources tactics, business strategy development, access to capital, and contract development. Eligible firms must be three years’ operating business grossing $150K-$10M in revenue with at least one full-time employee other than the owner located in Springfield.

“This is about my administration’s continued efforts to help support, sustain and create new jobs for all our small business owners. We want to continue to be business friendly and help them thrive,” said Domenic J. Sarno, Mayor of the City of Springfield. “I thank all the diverse organizations involved and I appreciate our small business’s continued belief and investment in our Springfield.”

“African American business owners are under extreme pressure due to the lack of sophisticated and quality training programs. While we understand that African Americans are opening new businesses, it is incumbent and beneficial for cities and communities to make certain there are support systems in place to help sustain those businesses. This is what Interise provides. Interise offers programs in educating the business owner, thus providing them with crucial tools to business sustainability,” said Robert Jones, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Association of Black Business and Professionals.

“Interise is delighted to be collaborating on RiseUp Springfield with the City of Springfield Office of Planning and Economic Development, Association of Black Business & Professionals and the Springfield Regional Chamber,” said Jean Horstman, CEO of Interise.  “This innovative partnership of government and business, supported by the Massachusetts Gaming Commission, is a model of how to catalyze the development of local, inclusive and equitable small business ecosystems.  Our research shows us that we can expect impressive results from these companies in terms of job creation, wealth generation and revenue growth. When established small businesses grow, communities thrive - this is what Interise stands for.”

 “The Springfield Regional Chamber is a natural partner for RiseUp Springfield. It is our mission to help businesses succeed and grow, because when they do, our region thrives. We’re here to support small businesses in a number of ways as they develop long-term growth strategies,” said Nancy Creed, Springfield Regional Chamber President.

“The Gaming Law placed a serious emphasis on developing and supporting small and minority-owned businesses. Pursuant to that mandate, MGC is committed to using its resources to identify and support these businesses in partnership with our licensees and host communities,” said MGC Commissioner Bruce Stebbins. “In particular, The City of Springfield and MGM Springfield have significantly supported this priority. RiseUp Springfield is the consummation of the collaboration to bring this legislative strategy to fruition.”

Interested small businesses can apply online immediately, by clicking on On September 12th, interested business owners will be invited to attend an information session to learn more and meet the Program Manager.

About City of Springfield

The City of Springfield through its office of Planning and Economic Development works to create an environment in Springfield that is conducive to growing and attracting businesses in order to strengthen and revitalize the City's neighborhoods and communities and to stabilize and transform our physical, social, and economic environment.

For more information, email Shayvonne Plummer, RiseUp Springfield Program Manager at 

About Association of Black Business & Professionals

"To promote and sustain Black businesses, professionals, programs and initiatives in the areas and markets that we serve through advocacy, networking and education."

The Five Areas of Focus:

- Economic Development

- Leadership

- Education

- Culture and Lifestyle

- Advocacy

About Springfield Chamber of Commerce

The Springfield Regional Chamber has been taking care of business for more than a century. Over that time, the Chamber's core mission has remained constant: to promote, support and enhance the economic health of the business community and the region. The Springfield Regional Chamber brings a regional approach to the value of networking, economic development and business development to industries of all sizes and types.

The Springfield Regional Chamber is an effective legislative advocate on the local, state and national levels working to educate businesses of all sizes and types during today’s changing corporate environment. We help connect members to commerce by providing the tools necessary to forge strategic partnerships. We expand marketing opportunities for member businesses. We lead the way in improving the overall quality of life in the region. And, through the support and involvement of our members, we continue to be a leading force for economic development and civic engagement.


About Interise

Interise is the go-to partner with a proven model for accelerating economic and small business growth in lower income communities. With over 75 program locations in the United States, Interise’s StreetWise 'MBA'™ provides small business owners with the business knowledge, management know-how and relationships they need to scale using a peer-based learning method. Alumni historically create new jobs at 5x the rate of the private sector as a whole and are responsible for the creation of over 30,000 new jobs. Alumni have secured over $3 billion in government and institutional contracts. As alumni grow, they contribute to economic development, job creation and social resilience within their local community. More information can be found at @StreetWiseMBA and at 

About MassGaming

The mission of the Massachusetts Gaming Commission is to create a fair, transparent, and participatory process for implementing the expanded gaming law passed by the Legislature and signed by the Governor in November, 2011. In creating that process, the Commission will strive to ensure that its decision-making and regulatory systems engender the confidence of the public and participants, and that they provide the greatest possible economic development benefits and revenues to the people of the Commonwealth, reduce to the maximum extent possible the potentially negative or unintended consequences of the new legislation, and allow an appropriate return on investment for gaming providers that assures the operation of casino-resorts of the highest quality. For more information on MGC, please visit or connect and share on Twitter (@MassGamingComm) or Facebook


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