• WBDC Welcomes Pair of Business Advisors to Team

    STAMFORD, Conn. — The Women’s Business Development Council (WBDC) is announcing the additions of Joy Braddock and Annya White-Brown to its team of Business Advisors. Specifically, Braddock will serve as Torrington Business Advisor, focusing on supporting emerging and existing business owners in Torrington, as well as other areas; and White-Brown, as Marketing Business Advisor, will use her own experience to guide Connecticut women entrepreneurs looking to expand their business through marketing.

    “Joy and Annya are amazingly talented and experienced entrepreneurs, and we are absolutely delighted to have them join our team of advisors,” said WBDC CEO Fran Pastore. “Each of them brings a unique perspective on entrepreneurship, but both have an absolute passion for supporting our state’s small business community.”

    About Joy Braddock (Photo)

    Braddock brings with her nearly a decade of experience as a small business owner, and more than 20 years of experience in marketing and advertising. As the co-owner of a local Connecticut brewery, she understands the passion, drive and perseverance needed to start and run a small business. She represents an unbiased, knowledgeable guide to assist small businesses to run smoothly and efficiently.

    Braddock is passionate about empowering women to take on business ownership and flourish. She is the co-founder and president of the Bombshell Project, a non-profit on a mission to help women enter and lead in the male-dominated craft brewing industry.

    About Annya White-Brown (Photo)

    White-Brown is the founder and CEO of NaturalAnnie Essentials, a candle bar and candle studio based in Bridgeport. Heavily influenced by her Jamaican culture, she has mastered the ability to use scents to transport others to a tropical place. Her journey into entrepreneurship began in 2015 when her first daughter was born with spina bifida and hydrocephalus. Since then, she has grown NaturalAnnie Essentials out of her kitchen to now selling her soy candles in more than 600 retail stores in the USA, Canada, Ghana, and the Caribbean.

    White-Brown is passionate about operating her small business and understands the important role marketing plays in a small business’ growth and development. She has worked with a number of well-respected companies such as TikTok, Maker’s Mark, and Michael’s —  sharing her craft and her marketing strategies.

    Prior to becoming Connecticut’s “Candle Queen”, Annya worked in IT Research at Gartner where she managed Gartner’s North America, EMEA, and APAC Dedicated Vendor Briefings accounts. Her role included presenting clear and concise actionable direction to companies like Microsoft, IBM, Oracle, Cisco and HP on how to deliver effective vendor briefings and building strong relationships with analysts, sales and the vendor/analysts relations community.

    Business owners interested in meeting with Braddock or White-Brown should reach out to WBDC at

    About the Women’s Business Development Council 

    The Women’s Business Development Council’s (WBDC) mission is to support economic prosperity for women and strengthen communities through entrepreneurial and financial education services that create and grow sustainable jobs and businesses across Connecticut. WBDC educates, motivates and empowers women to achieve economic independence and self-sufficiency. Since 1997, WBDC has educated and trained nearly 18,000 clients in all of Connecticut’s 169 towns—helping women to launch, sustain and scale almost 13,500 businesses, create and maintain more than 29,600 jobs in Connecticut, and access more than $52.5 million in capital. Visit for more information.