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Department of State

The Hon. Tahesha Way, Lt. Governor and Secretary of State

Secretary Way Celebrates National Black Business Month

Business Action Center Within New Jersey Department of State Supports Black Entrepreneurs


Trenton, NJ - August is Black Business Month, a time dedicated to celebrating and supporting Black-owned businesses and Black entrepreneurs. The New Jersey Department of State (DOS) recognizes the significance of this month and emphasizes the need for inclusivity in the state's economic successes. Through the New Jersey Business Action Center (NJBAC), within DOS, valuable resources and assistance are offered to empower Black business owners and entrepreneurs to thrive in their industries.

"I am proud to lead a Department that supports the economic vitality of our state," stated Secretary Way. "I'm grateful for the ways we can work together to ensure Black business owners and entrepreneurs are included in our state's economic successes. The NJBAC is a valuable resource within my office that can help you navigate the state rules governing your business and provide potential resources, including financial support, to succeed in whatever your industry may be."

Melanie Willoughby, the Executive Director of the NJBAC, highlighted the center's mission, saying, "The NJ Business Action Center exists to help New Jersey businesses navigate state government. We are dedicated to providing a wide range of services, including assistance with state tax certification, guidance to help businesses qualify for government contracts, and support in getting certified as a minority-owned business. By obtaining these designations, businesses can access various state programs and resources, opening doors to contract set-asides, supplier diversity programs, and opportunities in specialized programs such as the New Jersey Cannabis Training Academy, an initiative aimed at guiding social equity, legacy, Impact Zone license applicants through the legal cannabis marketplace."

Moreover, the Office of Export Promotion (OEP), an integral part of the NJBAC, supports New Jersey businesses seeking to expand globally. OEP’s New Jersey State Trade Expansion Program (NJSTEP) focuses on helping the underserved business community become export-ready. OEP recently hosted 12 NJSTEP food and beverage manufacturing companies at the international Fancy Food show, supporting critical access to international markets and allowing businesses to gain crucial support and guidance to excel in their export ventures.

For more information on the New Jersey Business Action Center and its services, visit or call 1-800-JERSEY-7.

About the NJ Business Action Center (NJBAC)
The New Jersey Business Action Center serves as the State's liaison to the business community, offering free information, services, and resources across various areas such as business registration, financial programs, regulatory compliance, property selection, workforce training, and more. NJBAC comprises multiple offices, including Small Business, Business Advocacy, Export Promotion, State Planning, and the Motion Picture and Television Commission. Access to NJBAC services is available through NJ DOS - NJ Business Action Center or Your first stop for doing business in NJ or by calling 1-800-JERSEY-7.


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