Candice Smith

Making Dreams Come True

Candice is a young entrepreneur on a mission to empower others. Candice attended the University of Iowa, where she connected with people of all ages and backgrounds and learned about their experiences. After graduating, she moved back home to Chicago to begin her professional career. One year later, she relocated to Iowa. Recalling a lack of awareness and support during college for African American culture in Iowa, Candice decided to found I Heart Black Business. Through this event production company Candice has pushed Eastern Iowa to embrace, celebrate, and cultivate black culture and entrepreneurship. Candice has received certifications from the Institute of Wedding & Event Design as well as the Event Leadership Institute.

Candice Smith

Founder & Creative Director

Turning a Vision into Reality

I Heart Black Business is a corporate event production and decor company supporting the black-owned businesses in Iowa.  We produce events that increase public awareness about black-owned businesses, connect business owners to resources that further their growth, and inspire black youth to consider entrepreneurship as a career path.

In 2019, I Heart Black Business held a networking party for black entrepreneurs to meet and learn about each business. In 2020, I Heart Black Business  created Strut Your Roots hair show to unite stylists and entrepreneurs across the state of Iowa working in the hair industry. All vendors at the hair show were also black-owned businesses from across the US.

In 2021, I Heart Black Business sent locals and out-of-towners on a black business tour throughout Johnson and Linn Counties. The I Heart Black Business Tour allowed the guests to shop, dine, and play at a variety of local black-owned businesses.

We are looking forward to producing many more exciting events for the black Iowa community!