Kitchen Table Entrepreneurs
How Eleven Women Escaped Poverty And Became Their Own Bosses
By Martha Shirk
(Basic Books, Hardcover, 9780813339108, 352pp.)
Publication Date: September 2002
Other Editions of This Title: Paperback
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Over the last five years, the number of women-owned businesses has grown at twice the rate of all U.S. firms; in 2002, the number is expected to surpass the six million mark. Kitchen Table Entrepreneurs tells the inspirational stories of eleven low-income women who have marshaled the creative energy, confidence, and capital necessary to start their own small businesses. These women, who have used their entrepreneurial skills as a route out of poverty, give an American face to an economic empowerment tool that has enjoyed great success in developing countries. And by becoming their own bosses, they are not only providing for their children but also inspiring them. Though each of their businesses is unique, all eleven of these women have discovered previously unknown strengths as they’ve struggled to overcome personal and bureaucratic obstacles. All received important assistance from nonprofit organizations supported by the Ms. Foundation for Women, a pioneer funding entity of microenterprise programs in the U.S. Accompanying each profile are photographs by documentary photographer Earl Dotter, which capture the unique, hardworking American spirit of the entrepreneur and her family.
Martha Shirk spent twenty-three years as a reporter for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, where she wrote extensively about children's issues. She lives in Palo Alto, California.