Columbus– On August 8th, State Senator Charleta B. Tavares was honored at the 2012 National Conference of State Legislature (NCSL) Legislative Summit in Chicago with a “Champion of Small Business” award from the National Coalition for Capital. Senator Tavares and 33 fellow legislators and officials from across the nation were recognized for their leadership at the annual National Coalition for Capital Awards Ceremony.

“This award recognizes Senator Tavares’ important work to preserve and create jobs through access to capital policy that helps Ohio small businesses grow and develop,” said Michael Votta, President of the National Coalition for Capital. “Senator Tavares had demonstrated she is a champion of small business, and her efforts will have an enduring positive impact on Ohio.”

Champions of Small Business Awards recognize individuals for demonstrating leadership in supporting policies and initiatives designed to promote access to capital for small businesses and entrepreneurs, especially those in economically distressed communities. Senator Tavares recently introduced new legislation, along with Senator Bill Beagle, to expand the existing New Market Tax Credit program to attract investment in low- income areas.

“Now more than ever, it is critical that elected officials do their part to advance innovative access to capital policies that allow small businesses to grow and prosper,” said SenatorTavares. “I am pleased to be among those honored for supporting small businesses and entrepreneurs as they strive to preserve and grow jobs in their communities.”

Prior to her election to the Ohio Senate, Tavares served five and a half years as a state Representative. She went on to serve as a member of the Columbus City Council for eleven years. Senator Tavares was the first African-American female to serve in the state legislature from Franklin County and the first African-American woman ever to hold a leadership position in the Ohio General Assembly. She currently serves as the Ranking Minority Member on the Senate Ways and Means Committee and Economic Development Committee. 

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May is Mental Health Month sponsored by Mental Health America. This year’s theme is called “B4Stage4” which focuses on diagnosing and addressing mental illnesses before Stage 4 in which symptoms are more severe and difficult to treat.

Mental illnesses are sometimes crippling disorders that affect the lives of millions of Americans and oftentimes go unannounced because of the stigma associated with them.

Join me in spreading the word about “mental health” throughout the month of May so that your friends, family, and community can get the support and education that they need.

For more information about mental health awareness, visit the National Alliance on Mental Illness at


Assistant Democratic Leader Charleta B. Tavares Honors The Life Of Former Ohio Democratic Party Chairman Paul Tipps


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