By Press Release Submitted to Published Mar 10, 2022 at 10:45 AM

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Molson Coors has announced today it is awarding $30,000 to local BIPOC (Black, Indigenous and people of color) entrepreneurs as part of the company’s Tap the Future grant program aimed at supporting the establishment of small businesses in Milwaukee’s Near West Side neighborhood.

The Tap the Future grant recipients are Nubian Simmons, founder of The Pink Bakery; Chrishella Roche, founder of VIBEZ Creative Arts Space; and Taj Pearsall, founder of Buffalo Boss. A result of Molson Coors’ Tap the Future Business Plan Competition, these grants are intended to help business operations as prioritized by the business owner.

“We have made a commitment to our communities to provide support for organizations working for a more just and inclusive world,” said Tami Garrison, Molson Coors community affairs director. “We’re proud to be able to partner with the Near West Side Partners to provide funding and resources for BIPOC entrepreneurs who are developing and scaling their businesses.”

In addition to the grant funds, the selected businesses will receive support from Near West Side Partners throughout the establishment process, which will include regular check-ins and guidance in the times leading up to opening and connecting entrepreneurs with other resources available to Near West Side businesses.

“The Near West Side has a rich history of entrepreneurial success and innovation,” said Keith Stanley, Executive Director of Near West Side Partners. “We’re excited to be assisting Molson Coors in its mission to uplift small business owners and energize the economy of the Near West Side.”

About the Winners

Nubian Simmons, The Pink Bakery

The Pink Bakery is an allergen-free baking mix company that has received national attention, including financial support from Beyoncé’s Beygood Foundation, a collaboration with the NAACP to support Black-owned businesses during the pandemic. The Pink Bakery has also established a partnership with Marquette University to offer students with dietary restrictions more food options in the dining hall. The grant will assist Simmons as she establishes a manufacturing facility in the Miller Valley.

Chrishella Roche, VIBEZ Creative Arts Space

VIBEZ Creative Arts Space is a studio for the community to learn, explore and enjoy art through different mediums though paint & sip experiences, workshops and community events. VIBEZ opened its first location in Glendale in 2018 and has received support from Beyoncé’s Beygood Foundation.

Taj Pearsall, Buffalo Boss

Buffalo Boss is an organic chicken wing restaurant with locations in New York and in Milwaukee at Sherman Phoenix. The Near West Side location will be situated on North 27th Street near Wisconsin Avenue.