Skip to content

Prosper Women Entrepreneurs opens application process for Mastermind peer advisory groups

From Illinois Business Journal news services.

ST. LOUIS – The application process is open for Prosper Women Entrepreneurs’ 2015-2017 cohort of Mastermind peer advisory groups.

The program is open to business women in both Missouri and Illinois.

Prosper Mastermind pairs groups of five to seven women entrepreneurs for confidential, self-facilitated meetings focused on the challenges facing women entrepreneurs. St. Louis-area women entrepreneurs across all stages of business who are seeking to ramp up their growth trajectory are invited to apply by completing the online interest form and signing up for and attending an orientation session (

“Prosper Mastermind groups serve as a trusted, confidential advisory group of peers who can offer diverse perspectives on the challenges of launching or growing a business as a female entrepreneur,” said Prosper Mastermind Chair Sophia Pierroutsakos. “If you are in the startup or growth phase of your business, are without a parent company, and are ready to commit to a structured process to take your business to the next level, Mastermind may be a fit for you.”

Selected women participate in a half-day training session, where they first meet the other members of their group and learn the facilitated process that will help each participant reach actionable solutions to their individual business challenges. Each group is also assigned a Mastermind advisor to offer counsel and mentorship.

Mastermind groups then meet monthly over a period of two years to provide peer-to-peer counsel on strategic, technical and operational matters as well as to provide accountability on goal-setting and plan implementation to help each participant advance to the next phase of growth. To help remove potential barriers to success Prosper provides support for the Mastermind groups by meeting administrative needs including meeting locations, reminders and tracking documents.

The 2014-2016 Mastermind cohort of 31 women business owners – selected from more than 100 applications – has completed more than six months of the program. Among the participants is Johnna Beckham, founder and CEO of Johnna Marie, a St. Louis-based online apparel company that designs and manufactures tailor-made suits for women.

“Mastermind has helped to accelerate my business growth trajectory by offering a group of trusted advisors who understand the challenges and exciting wins that come with starting your own business,” Beckham said. “Our monthly group discussions about co-marketing, strategy and new creative ideas helped to support the launch of Johanna Marie earlier this year. And the group’s ongoing encouragement and problem-solving capacity will undoubtedly play a role in our next chapter.”

About Prosper Women Entrepreneurs

Prosper Women Entrepreneurs is an organization dedicated to addressing the entrepreneur gender gap in the St. Louis region by fostering, developing, and capitalizing women-led businesses in St. Louis and beyond. The organization connects women entrepreneurs to a vast network of support and financial resources through complementary non-profit and for-profit divisions:

· Prosper Women Entrepreneurs Institute is a 501c3 nonprofit that advocates for women in the entrepreneurial community and provides education, support and networking opportunities through three signature programs: Prosper Mastermind, Prosper Youth & Collegiate and Prosper Entrepreneurship Resources

· Prosper Women Entrepreneurs Capital group is a for-profit LLC that focuses on increasing both women entrepreneurs’ access to growth capital and the number of women investing in early-stage capital markets through an Angel Network and Startup Accelerator.

To find out more about Prosper Women Entrepreneurs, visit

Leave a Comment