During this year’s CIAA tournament weekend, local entrepreneurs Kevin “Chef Kev” Winston and Antwoin “Twoin B” Bryant curated an experience aimed at connecting the “connectors.” They called on rapper Fabolous — one of Chef Kev’s clients — to join, a testament to the power of partnerships.
On March 2, roughly 30 of Charlotte’s most influential tastemakers mingled on the rooftop of the Ascent Luxury Apartments in uptown Charlotte for the Power of Influence brunch. The invite-only event provided an opportunity for attendees to make new connections and build relationships.
Chef Kev, whose clients also include singers H.E.R. and Fantasia, was intentional in creating an intimate environment.
“It’s important that local entrepreneurs connect and collaborate,” he said. “The idea is that this is more than a social event, it’s an opportunity to create new partnerships and ways to work together.”
Grammy-nominated rapper Fabolous hosted the event and mingled with guests. Recently visiting the city for NBA All-Star weekend, Fabolous agreed that Charlotte is a growing hub for small business owners.
Twoin B, co-owner of Posh Events Charlotte and creative director for the Peter Thomas Entertainment Group, felt that it was critical to gather “the influencers of Charlotte’s emerging creative culture in one room.”
Between the amazing food and bottomless mimosas, I chatted with Chef Kev about entrepreneurship.
What do you think is the biggest misconception about entrepreneurship?
First, that it’s easy. Second, that there’s only one way to do it. There are multiple ways to navigate your passion. You have to first figure out what it is that you love and pursue it.
For those considering starting a business, how did you discover your passion and what you wanted to pursue?
Honestly, it was by failing. I failed over and over. I tried corporate as well as several different businesses. I finally found something that I wanted to do [cooking] and realized that I could do it for free.
Why do you think it’s important that business owners in Charlotte work together?
There’s so much opportunity in the city. As entrepreneurs, we need to be exposed to what those around us are working on and what they are doing. You won’t know who you can help or partner with if you aren’t aware of what’s happening in your own backyard.
Judging by the exchanging of business cards and toasts to new relationships, I think Twoine and Chef Kev accomplished their goal of connecting the connectors in Charlotte.
Nakisha Washington is a style contributor who mixes prints and professionals. She’s a millennial development coach, content creator and lover of all things stylish!