Best Networking Groups for Women in CLT Right Now

by co-contributors Susu Bear and Susan McDonough and sponsored by Charlotte Radiology Breast Services.

If we know anything, we know it’s hard out there. Hard to connect, hard to go after new business, hard to find other business women to share ideas with and trust, hard to find time to grow your business savvy, hard to compete, hard to keep up, and really hard to leave the house once you’re home.

It’s so rewarding when you do though, right? We always swear ” I’m definitely going to do this more often.” Maybe we can help. Our CLTWomen’s series, sponsored by Charlotte Radiology, hopes to make it a little easier for all of us to learn about and connect with the hundreds, thousands of women doing great things in Charlotte right now.

Networking is definitely one way in, and while there are local options depending on your industry and extracurriculars, we wanted to highlight the CHARLOTTE WOMENS’ NETWORKING groups you might want to read about and join. Some of these have free events, most charge a fee, some are more for corporate types, some for entrepreneurs, some for girl-bosses, some are charitably focused. All are good ways to connect. In no particular order, here are 20 of the Charlotte Womens’ Networking groups on our radar right now:

Ellevate Network. A national/global networking org for women with a solid local chapter. Plenty of meet ups at various times & locations plus online “Jam Sessions” covering an array of topics to help. Priced at several levels, $100 to $1000, depending on what you are looking for. JANUARY PROMO DEAL, Join with code ‘ItStartsWithMe’ for 20% off your membership.

NAWBO  National Association of  Women Business Owners – Charlotte and Ballantyne chapters. The OG of the local womens’ professional networking groups. The national org just celebrated the 30 year anniversary of HR5050, legislation they sponsored to allow women to obtain a business loan without a male signature. A huge organization with a wide reach and a ton of events, etc. A $100 one-time initiation fee, plus annual membership of $239 to $479.

National Coalition of 100 Black Women – Queen City Metropolitan Chapter chartered 9 years ago in Charlotte to advocate on behalf of Black women and girls. Non-profit group with a mission to improve the lives of African American women and their families by creating programs focusing on family, education, health and finances. Accepting applications thru February 1, 2019 for membership this year.

Pink Mentor Network & Pop Up Mentor want to change how women seek mentorship. Offering a  a “no strings attached” approach to mentoring, where women “Pop-Up” to share their experiences in small (no more than 10 mentees) groups. Members get access to the calendar where new mentorship experiences go live every Tuesday at 9AM. Registration is prioritized for members, and is first come, first serve.  Membership is an $89 annual fee. Mentor Dinners, Mentor Grab Bag, Mystery Mentor, all designed to add fun and take the nerves out of mentorship.

Know [Tribe] Charlotte Launched in 2017 in Phoenix (by an ex-QC mom-preneur) The KNOW Book + Tribe started as a way to bring more attention to dynamic local women doing remarkable things. The concept spread to several metro’s, including Charlotte where it launched last November. Not all entrepreneurs, also corporate professionals, small business owners, NFP mavens. The linchpin of the Know program is a printed book featuring local female business owners, nominations start in March for the 2020 Charlotte book (there is a fee to be featured). Membership is also available, $100 per year, with access to members-only events and meet ups.

Women Executives  (WE) Around for 40 years, the goal of WE is to be an organization that is representative of leaders in the business, professional, educational and non-profit community of Charlotte.  Membership in WE is by invitation only through a sponsored application process.

Women Entrepreneurs of Charlotte primarily a Meet-Up group, with over 1,000 QC female entrepreneurs. Monthly breakfast events, with a few business based meet-ups as well.

Live Loud Collective. Charlotte based, tight knit group of entrepreneurs and small business owners. Limited and curated membership, apply for consideration, annual fee $179. Advice and counsel blogs, members-only facebook group, events & meet ups.

Charlotte Women in Tech Membership is open, there is no fee in 2019 to join, and you do not have to have a job in tech. Whether you are a tenured veteran or fresh out of your first coding class, CWIT invites you to grow your skills both professionally and technically, discuss the issues facing the tech field, and share skills and experiences with women here in Charlotte.

Power of Women | Charlotte Regional Business Alliance, the women program series and network platform of the Charlotte Regional Business Alliance. Goals are to support relationship building among professional women; Identify potential mentoring opportunities for diverse, multigenerational women at various stages in their career journey; Foster greater collaboration and partnerships among Charlotte’s professional women’s networks. Membership ~ $500 per year ~ is to the Charlotte Regional Business Alliance, the merged entity between the Charlotte Chamber and the Charlotte Regional Partnership.

Women in Networking (WIN NC) WIN is a hyper-local womens’ professional network for business owners & entrepreneurs with over 28 chapters in NC and SC, and 8 in what we consider the “Greater CLT Area”. The WIN network goal is clear -> exchange customer referrals & leads, share knowledge and offer support for professional growth and prosperity. Each WIN chapter meets once a week with either a professional development speaker or a member speaker. In addition, each member can give a 30 second business update each week. Only one woman may represent any business category in a chapter, which can be easily searched on their site.

Charlotte Business Sorority Business Sorority is clear, they are a relationship group, not a leads group. Believing that people do business with people they know, like and trust, Business Sorority provides a forum for those relationships to build.  They host monthly luncheons for the North and the South Charlotte Chapters, as well as a mixers, speakers, masterminds and even a book club where you don’t have to read the book. Membership is limited and sponsored.

CREW Charlotte  A professional association for women in commercial real estate and service related industries. Membership rates at various levels depending on your experience, $395 for CRE, $595 for fields related, etc. Events, news, announcements & more related to local commercial real estate.

Non Professional Womens Groups To Know

 Women United | United Way Central Carolinas a network of female professionals, community volunteers and business leaders which focuses on the importance of early childhood – holding informative and engaging events, hosting national experts in the field and creating ambassadors to this critical issue. Membership is open to women investors who donate at least $1000 a year annually to UWCC.

Good Friends. If you don’t attend this annual luncheon, you are missing out. Every year I mean to host a scoop table. Maybe this year I finally will!

Charlotte Womens Club shout out to the oldest civic organization in Charlotte formed in 1899. Before the Men. Way to Go Women.

Women’s Inter Cultural Exchange organized and operated exclusively for charitable and educational purposes including building social capital among women of diverse cultures, fostering cross-cultural awareness, and developing the infrastructure for community dialog, engagement and programming.

Womens Impact Fund a 500 member local womens’ philanthropic group which is one of the fastest growing groups of its kind in the country. Each member commits to $1,300 per year in membership dues, and as an initial commitment, new members sign a five-year commitment. Of the $1,300 annual dues, $1,000 is allocated to their annual grant pool.

Junior League of Charlotte You may know it from your home town, or the town you’ve moved here from, but you may want to get to know the Charlotte chapter. This is not your mom’s JL. It is a vibrant, diverse and professional group, and is worth a look if meeting women interested in volunteerism is important to you.

League of Women Voters in Charlotte The League of Women Voters is a nonpartisan political organization encouraging informed and active participation in government. It influences public policy through education and advocacy.

Co-ed Networking Groups To Know:

Latin Americans Working for Achievement  (LAWA ) – used to be the Latin American Women’s Association, underwent a name change to be more inclusive

Carolinas Asian American Chamber of Commerce.  (caacc)Charlotte Mecklenburg Black Chamber of Commerce
Young Professionals Group | Charlotte Regional Business Alliance 
Creative Mornings – Charlotte
Hood Hargett Breakfast Club 

Did we miss your favorite? Please comment below with the details so all can learn about it. And Happy Networking!

This series, brought to you by Charlotte Radiology Breast Centers, highlights the Charlotte Women making our community the vibrant, growing, exciting place they’ve been calling home for 50 years. At Charlotte Radiology, they know women, seeing over 100,000 women a year for their breast health needs. The professionals at Charlotte Radiology believe the key to beating and detecting breast cancer early is annual mammograms starting at age 40


scoop team
scoop team
This article was written by one of the many QC women who contribute to our website. They are out and about and around Charlotte digging up the latest & best scoop :)