Shaw University’s Commencement exercise will be held at the Raleigh Convention Center on Saturday, May 13, 2023, at 10 a.m. Entrepreneur and philanthropist Natalie Madeira Cofield will be the 2023 Commencement Speaker.
Natalie Madeira Cofield is a former presidentially appointed czar for small businesses. Ms. Natalie Cofield received her master’s degree of Public Administration; Economic Development from Baruch College and her Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Information Sciences from Howard University. An award-wining entrepreneur, philanthropist, political appointee, and economic activist, she has over 15 years of experience in leveraging federal and private business development initiatives.
Cofield has provided some of the nation’s most prominent CEOs of billion-dollar organizations, executives of global brands, senior advisors to the White House, mayors of leading national cities, and community activists and leaders with inspiration, insight, and advisement. She has testified before the U.S. Senate Committee on small business and produced the first-ever Women’s Business Summit for the Small Business Administration (SBA) featuring Vice President Kamala Harris and senior cabinet members of the Biden-Harris Administration.
Cofield served as a Presidential Appointee with the Biden-Harris Administration, where she served as head of the Office of Women’s Business Ownership at the U.S. Small Business Administration. She was responsible for managing a budget of $70 million and funding the largest expansion, in the history of SBA, for the Women’s Business Center Network. As the Assistant Administrator of the SBA, she advised on the deployment of $1.2 trillion in funding and was directly responsible for more than $200 million in funding to ecosystems and entrepreneurs throughout the country during the most significant economic crisis in modern history.
She is the co-founder of the $14M Coalition to Back Black Business, which was responsible for funding nearly 1,000 Black-owned businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic. Named one of the 100 Most Powerful Women in Business by Entrepreneur Magazine and one of the 100 Most Powerful Washingtonians by Washington Business Journal, she has also been featured in Forbes, Inc. Time, CNN, The Atlantic, Bloomberg and more.
Visit the Commencement Website for information
- Home Page
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Important Dates and Deadlines
- Appropriate Attire and Decorum
- Commencement Logistics and Seating
- Directions and Parking
- Commencement will be streamed live on Shaw University’s Facebook, Youtube, and Twitter accounts.