The Western Women's Business Center meets the needs of women entrepreneurs through one-on-one business coaching, workshops, and access to capital. Our team of experts offer support on a range of topics small businesses need to start and grow.
We are a program of Carolina Small Business Development Fund, a statewide nonprofit Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) with a mission to foster economic development in the state of North Carolina.
The counties in our service area are: Alexander, Avery, Buncombe, Burke, Caldwell, Cherokee, Clay, Graham, Haywood, Henderson, Jackson, McDowell, Macon, Madison, Mitchell, Polk, Rutherford, Swain, Transylvania, Watauga, Wilkes, and Yancey.
Since 2014, the Western Women’s Business Center has served as a catalyst for the success of women entrepreneurs in the mountain region.
We are proud to have supported thousands of businesses in Western North Carolina.
Jobs created and retained
Clients attending training and events
One-on-one coaching clients
Our team brings a high level of expertise, professionalism, and engagement with entrepreneurs across the region. Our knowledge and passion is reflected in all of the services we offer.
Zurilma Anuel serves as Director of the Western Women's Business Center. In that role she oversees the strategic direction and day-to-day operations of the center, which seeks to promote entrepreneurship in the western region of North Carolina. She was previously Director of CSBDF's Latino Program. Prior her career at CSBDF, Zuri was Latino Program coordinator for Mountain BizWorks and worked for over a decade as a personal banker at Wells Fargo. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Commercial and Financial Administration from the Central University of Caracas and certificates in economic development finance and business credit analysis.
Maite Gonzalez is the Program Associate for the Western Women's Business Center (WWBC). Prior to joining the WWBC, she worked at Mission Hospital for five years as a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) and then continued on to get her Associate Degree in Nursing.
Maite is originally from Chile. She is passionate about making a positive impact on the world, and is excited about contibuting to the WWBC's mission.
Client Intake Specialist
April Nash joined the Western Women's Business Center team in 2023. She is a serial entrepreneur with a passion for small business and social justice. She is accomplished in business and financial planning, cost-saving initiatives, and mentoring executives.
She is a lifelong learner and loves to discover the personal stories that drive people to create. Her background in risk management and financial advising, combined with her passion for small business has led her to help everyday people achieve their business ownership goals. In addition to her work with individual clients, April has also supported enterprise-level risk management programs, governing boards, and non-profits alike.
Marketing & Communications Associate
Alec Sawyer serves as Marketing & Communications Associate for Carolina Small Business Development Fund and its associated programs, including the Western Women's Business Center. Prior to joining CSBDF, he worked as a sports journalist covering N.C. State Athletics and the Carolina Hurricanes for 247 Sports, SB Nation, Saturday Road, and others.
Alec earned his B.A. in Communication Studies, Media from North Carolina State University, where he served on the editorial board of the student newspaper, Technician.
Thank you so much to the generous funders of the Western Women’s Business Center who make our work possible.