About This Center

missouri MBDA Business Center

Our Story

missouri MBDA

The Missouri MBDA Business Center located in St. Louis, MO is operated by the Chicago Minority Business Development Council, Incorporated. The Center is part of a national network of MBDA Business Centers funded by the U.S. Department of Commerce, Minority Business Development Agency.

The center works with minority business enterprises to generate increased financing and contract opportunities and to create and retain jobs.

The mission of the center is to strengthen the US economy by helping ethnic minority businesses create or retain jobs, and build economically vibrant, socially responsible entrepreneurs, businesses, and communities.

Our Experience

Meet Our Team

Todd Gilyard

Project Director

Todd Gilyard brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the role of Project Director for the St. Louis MBDA Business Center. He became active with the minority business community while working as the Assistant Project Lead/Job Developer for the St. Louis Housing Authority’s Job Plus Program; Community Outreach Director at the Urban League of Metropolitan St. Louis; and while running his own business, The Gilyard Group, LLC (2014-2016).

He is a tireless advocate for building wealth in minority communities by utilizing urgent and aggressive timelines in integrating corporate supply chains. He is skilled at analyzing critical business needs, negotiating contracts and facilitating long-term relationships. He also possesses an impressive track record of building strong technical and professional partnerships, as well as establishing a rapport with community and global organizations.

Leveraging his unique experience, Todd aims to lead the way for further development of MBEs and WBEs in the St. Louis region.

dr. alan K. green

chief financial officer

Ex. Representative Alan K. Green, represented parts of Saint Louis County (District 67) in the Missouri House of Representatives until 2021. He served on the Finance/Banking, Economic Development, and Workforce committees in the House. Dr. Alan K. Green is CEO/Consultant/Agent for 11 years with Green and Associates, LLC which specializes in Surety Bonds, Payment Bonds, Finance, Government and Business consulting. Green and Associates, LLC writes bonds and finances projects all over the country. Mr. Green served as Special Assistant to the Director of the Department Social Service, the State of Missouri. He reviewed the Community Service Block Grant proposals for the City of St. Louis, making his recommendation to the Governor. He also served as the Director of the Office of Equal Opportunity in the Office of Administration working to grow M/WBE’s in the State of Missouri. Most contracts for the state of Missouri flow through the Office of Administration.


Alan K. Green graduated from the University of Texas at Tyler, BS in Criminal Justice and American Diplomacy. M.A., National Louis University, Management and Development of Human Resources, MBA, Lindenwood University, Management and Business Administration and PH.D, United Theological Seminary, Survine Bible College/St. Louis Extension. Emerging Leaders Program-Executive Management Program, Daren School of Business – University of Virginia.


Jamayca Smith

Business Development Manager

Jamayca Smith serves as the Business Development Manager for the Missouri Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) Business Center.

In 2008, Jamayca began her professional journey with the NMSDC (National Minority Supplier Development Council) network as the Certification Coordinator and Office Administrator for the St. Louis Minority Business Council.  Jamayca has worked closely with more than 55 major corporations in the St. Louis and Southern Illinois region. Her primary focus has been to provide the Minority Business Enterprises and Corporate Members with exceptional service and support.

In September 2013, the U.S. Department of Commerce’s MBDA announced $7.3 million in grants, designed and awarded to organizations to boost job creation and the global competitiveness of MBEs nationwide.

The Chicago Minority Supplier Development Council was one of several grant recipients, and as a result, an MBDA Business Center was established in St. Louis in partnership with the St. Louis Minority Business Council.

The St. Louis MBDA Business Center needed an Administrative Assistant who was knowledgeable of the organization, its mission and the St. Louis minority business community.  It was a logical decision to bring Jamayca on board to fill that position.  Consequently, in November 2013, Jamayca was hired for that role, while still maintaining the role of Administrative Assistant II to the St. Louis Minority Business Council.  Due to the restructuring of the St. Louis Minority Council’s operation, Jamayca’s time with SLMBC came to an end, and her current responsibilities are solely with the St. Louis MBDA Business Center.

In Jamayca’s current role as the Business Development Manager, she continues to provide support services in the areas of access to capital, procurement and partnership opportunities to minority owned businesses.  She also serves on the St. Louis Business Diversity Connect planning committee as well as the newly formed Mid Points CMSDC/MBDA Committee. 

dr. alyce herndon

coronavirus relief program coordinator

Dr. Alyce Herndon is a first generation female entrepreneur, who understands the excitement of starting a new business, and ensuring its sustainability. Dr. Herndon is the president of Onyx Business Consulting, where she works as a business coach, trainer and facilitator of business development programs that assist business owners through strategy, and guidance to launch, grow or pivot across industries.

Dr. Herndon previously served as the director of the Grace Hill Women’s Business Center, where she helped to sustain entrepreneurial training, and 1:1 counseling. While serving as the director, she diligently created topic specific training, and increased counseling for women entrepreneurs to reach an average of 450+ annually, created access to capital through partnerships with banking institutions, and is passionate about providing resources to small business owners, especially women business owners, regardless of the stage of their business, and has made it her mission to help position business owners for growth.

Dr. Herndon has been awarded the Top 100 persons to know to succeed in business in 2018, also awarded the Melton Lewis Award for Equal Justice by Legal Services of Eastern Missouri, and most recently nominated to be included in the Hall of Fame of Small Businesses for 2019. Dr. Herndon’s positive attitude is infectious, as she motivates those she works with to #letsgrow or #finishstrong


Laura M. Hughes, J.D.

Business consultant

Laura M. Hughes came to the Missouri MBDA Business Center in May 2020. She brings several years of Real Estate and Foreign Direct Investment experience. Her impressive and diversified resume includes, St. Louis World Trade Center, RetailMeNot, Great Southwest EB-5 Regional Center, and Sprint. Currently, she teaches Business Law for the Master and Adult Degree Program at Huston-Tillotson University.

Hughes earned a JD from Saint Louis University School of Law; achieved a Master’s in Project Management from Keller Graduate School of Management; and a B.A. in International Business and Management from Clark Atlanta University. She has held a Missouri Real Estate Broker’s License since 2005 and is a certified Mediator for the State of Missouri.

Hughes is passionate about community redevelopment and neighborhood stabilization and is working with several organizations to restore The Ville, a historic minority neighborhood in St. Louis, Missouri. 


Tomicia Taylor

coronavirus Relief program Admin Assistant

Tomicia Taylor joined the St. Louis MBDA Business Center as Coronavirus Relief Program Administrative Assistant. With more than 15 years of experience, she is a great asset. 

Prior to joining MBDA, she gained her Southern Illinois Law Enforcement Commission and Correctional Officer Academy Training; and served as a Deputy Sheriff/ Bailiff with the St. Clair County Sheriff’s Department for the past 11 years. During her tenure, she deemed it a pleasure to serve the public as she received awards as Civilian of the Year as well as Officer of the Year.

Tomicia has mastered adequate interpersonal and communication skills and added under her belt, Microsoft Office Suite and Excel; and Law Enforcement principles and practices. She succeeds at decision making, problem solving, conflict resolution, building effective working relationships and making sound judgement. She also exhibits responsibility, dependability, honesty and integrity.  She’s currently the founder and Owner of George’s Infused Elixir. 

melody mcclellan

business consultant

Melody McClellan joined the MBDA Business Center – Cares Act Program as Coordinator in St Louis, MO. She has over 20 years of sales and entrepreneur experience.

McClellan is an graduate of Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville. She is an award winning health and wellness expert, author, health contributor, and featured on multiple media outlets. 

McClellan is passionate and eager to help minority owned businesses advance and grow.

angelia d. bills, M.S.W.

strategic communications consultant

In January 2020, Eagle Productions L.L.C. was founded in Clayton, Missouri by Angelia D. Bills, M.S.W. Eagle is a full-service marketing firm that is dedicated to helping businesses to soar. Eagle’s specialties include Strategic Marketing Communications, Public Relations, Social Media Campaigns, Advertising and Brand Management. Since its inception, Eagle Productions has represented the Missouri Minority Business Development Agency,  Midwest BankCentre, the Urban League of Metropolitan St. Louis, Annie Malone Children and Family Services, RiverBend Head Start, At Home Care, Places for People and Nourish Community STL.

Previously for 17 years, Bills served as Vice President of Communications for the Urban League of Metropolitan St. Louis. In this capacity, she managed and directed communications, marketing, advertising and social media programs for the $23 million nonprofit agency.

She has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communications from Howard University, a Master of Social Work Degree, specializing in Social and Economic Development from Washington University-in-St. Louis and a Consortium for Leadership Development Certificate from Harris-Stowe State University.


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