Thu | Jan 24, 2019

American author, businesswoman wants to empower J'can women

Published:Sunday | September 14, 2014 | 12:00 AM
Elvira Guzman

Hollywood public relations and branding firm Elvie G's PR, has partnered with Harriett Clarke, CEO of Blazing Trails, a local marketing and advertising company, to host a two-day empowerment programme later this month for Jamaican women. The programme is dubbed 'From Pain to Purpose, a Woman's Guide to Empowerment and Successful Entrepreneurship'.

The programme is geared at motivating Jamaican women to become entrepreneurs and will be hosted on Friday, September 26 and Saturday, September 27.

The event will commence with a 'Fitness Concert', to be held at the Barbican Beach in St Andrew, and the seminar that follows will take place at the Karram-Speid Auditorium (Merl Grove High), and will include a panel discussion with specially invited presenters. There will also be a question-and-answer segment that follows.

According to Elvira Guzman, CEO at Elvie G PR, she wanted to make donations to Jamaica's primary schools initially. However, she felt that the women's empowerment initiative would have greater impact on the Jamaican society.

"I wanted to create an event to donate to three primary schools in Jamaica, but what has manifested is much larger. It has turned into a two-day women's empowerment seminar that will focus on body, mind and spirit, and I am thrilled to have partnered with a powerhouse like Harriett Clarke of Blazing Trails. Together, we have created a spectacular event that we hope will uplift, empower and guide women to their best future yet. This will befit every woman wanting more in their lives," she said.

The seminar will feature presentations from top female executives from BET Network, The Steve Harvey Morning Show, The Roland Martin Show, Sister 2 Sister Magazine, among others.

"We will be sharing the secrets that most keep to themselves in fear they will lose their position. This event is about empowering each other to move up in the corporate world or to create your first or fifth business. This event will link women to other women with similar interests, who may have the contacts they need to get started," she disclosed.

Annual seminar

The women's seminar will be held annually and is expected to eventually pull women from other countries outside of the US and Jamaica, in the process expanding network potential. Guzman says she hopes the venture will encourage single mothers to create small businesses in order assist with tertiary education for their child or children.

"My goal is to empower a young girl to go to college ... versus the hard route when no one has mentored you. My goal is to create a network of women who genuinely want better for each other and to mentor the women of Jamaica to maximise their potential," she said.

The empowerment seminar has already received sponsorship from local-based companies like The Jamaica Money Market Brokers and the Jamaica Business Development Corporation. However, Guzman hopes other corporate entities will join the initiative and provide assistance to inspire others. "We anticipate and look forward to several others jumping aboard with us. Attaining sponsors and investors has been a struggle mainly because Jamaica is in a major recession. Some sponsors showed tremendous interest, but could not give because of previous commitments and needing more time. We anticipated the first year to be difficult, but we are grateful to have a few on board," she said.

In love with Jamaica

The businesswoman/author says she is not Jamaican, however, she fell in love with the island after visiting with actor/comedian Steve Harvey a few years ago. She also says the empowerment seminar will feature several international celebrities in the future and will carry a fashion element as well as other attractions.

"I fell in love with the history, culture and passion of the people. It's the same passion I feel in my heart for unity, love and helping one another. I have worked tremendously hard to make this event possible along with my partner and our sponsors and we hope you come out and join us," she said, extending a welcome to Jamaican women.

For further information on the women's empowerment programme, Guzman is encouraging interested persons or sponsors to visit

Elvira Guzman has worked with several international recording artistes and athletes and has also done production work for the Steve Harvey Show.