Adenah Bayoh, Irvington-based IHOP franchisee and real estate developer, has been named to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York's Small Business and Agricultural Advisory Council.
She will be expected to advise the council on economic and financial issues affecting small businesses by calling upon her own experience as a small business owner in New Jersey.
"As an entrepreneur operating in disadvantaged urban communities, I look forward to being a voice and an advocate," Bayoh said.
"My being on the committee will really show what it's like to run a small business. It's a no brainer to have a seat at the table being that I do business in some of the most economically challenged neighborhoods. I can have a real impact — and I am extremely grateful for the opportunity."
The Federal Reserve Bank of New York contacted Bayoh after reading about her story in NJBIZ. She then accepted a two year commitment that will require her to meet with the committee several times a year.
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"They knew that I have firsthand knowledge of what it's like to sit behind a desk and take a loan application from a small business, and that I also know what it's like to be asking for that loan," Bayoh said.
"Often times, small businesses close their doors because they lack access to capital. They wonder, how can I get money to sustain and grow my business?" she said.
"I can leverage my own experience in order to ask if the requirements for SBA loans can be relaxed. As they are now, the rules and regulations just take people away from running their businesses."
After immigrating to the United States during Liberia's civil war at the age of 13, Bayoh worked three jobs to put herself through Fairleigh Dickinson University earning a degree in business management.
She then started her career in banking before opening her first IHOP in Irvington in 2008 at the age of 27.
By 2010, her IHOP was the fastest growing location in the Northeast, and is currently the second largest employer in Irvington. She will be opening a second IHOP in Paterson in the spring of this year.
Bayoh is also the co-founder of Kapwood, an urban redevelopment real estate company with a portfolio valued at more than $200 million. She expects to begin demolition on the Irvington hospital project in the spring.
The Federal Reserve Bank of New York implements monetary policy, supervises and regulates financial institutions, helps maintain the nation's payment systems and sells and buys United States Treasuries.
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