LT Thompson Hired to Create Black Business Alliance
Terre Haute, Ind. – A well known Terre Haute small business owner has joined the Terre Haute Chamber of Commerce staff with the goal of creating a Black Business Alliance.
LT Thompson, the co-owner of downtown business Wellness Box, will serve as a new Black Business Alliance coordinator. Thompson is currently serving in a part-time role as he continues to oversee his small business along with wife and business partner Bonnie Thompson.
“I was attracted to the position immediately,” he explains. “Its goal is to strengthen outreach services to underserved communities, in this case, Black/Brown communities, to ensure the many free resources available to small businesses and entrepreneurs throughout the region are accessible and being utilized.”
The new position comes thanks to the Chamber’s partnership with the West Central Indiana Small Business Development Center (ISBDC), hosted at Indiana State University’s Scott College of Business. The ISBDC was a $1 million grant recipient of the Small Business Administration’s Community Navigator Pilot Program to support the creation of the Intentional Outreach Network (ION) which strengthens outreach services to underserved businesses in a seven-county service area.
The Black Business Alliance Coordinator will be responsible for building a Black Business Alliance under the Chamber umbrella to serve small black-owned businesses and entrepreneurs throughout a seven-county region in West Central Indiana. The newly formed Alliance will seek to empower, guide, promote, enhance, connect and grow black business leaders and entrepreneurs throughout the area.
No stranger to working in business, Thompson served as the Manager of Health and Wellness for Wellness for Life for nearly 8 years. He and Bonnie opened Wellness Box in 2016, growing the business from the Launch Terre Haute co-working space to its current location, 618 Wabash Avenue.
“This position is so important, it is designed to be ‘INTENTIONAL.’ I’m here to connect current owners or individuals considering starting a business to an advisor,” he explains. “As a black small business owner, I know firsthand how hard it is trying to navigate starting up, launching and operating.”
“The Chamber has been looking for opportunities to expand our reach and encourage more business and economic development throughout the region,” explained Terre Haute Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Kristin Craig. “LT is a great fit for this expansion, as a small business owner he is well-equipped to understand the needs of businesses throughout the region.”
Thompson plans to make personal connections with current black and brown business owners, providing information regarding services and resources. Those connections will ideally result in the creation of a permanent Black Business Alliance.
For more information or to connect with LT Thompson, click here.