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Staff Meeting


Rebuilding Rural Communities One Small Business At A Time 

Our Purpose


     The RBTC takes a regional approach to creating a concept of operation, identifying board members with enthusiasm and experience. To collaborating with private and public partners to deliver the necessary programs to provide economic growth in our region. The CO.STARTERS Core is a cohort-based program at predetermined locations in partnering counties, and business owners who will offer program graduates affordable spaces to start their businesses. They will equip entrepreneurs of all kinds with the insights, relationships, and tools needed to turn ideas into action, over ten sessions.

     Rural Business and Training Center (RBTC) is a nonprofit organization incorporated on July 10, 2020, in Demopolis, AL.  The RBTC's purpose is to provide tools, techniques, and training using a "boots-on-ground" approach by practitioners, facilitators, and educators to equip entrepreneurs to start businesses in Marengo, Greene, Perry, Hale, and surrounding Blackbelt counties.  


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       Annually, the RBTC offers their 10-week, facilitator-led programs. To recruit and identify individuals ready and willing to invest in themselves, their communities, and deploy their entrepreneurial visions. The RBTC will offer a variety of business workshops and seminars. In advance of the 10-week core program, the RBTC offers a 3-hour workshop.


     RBTC board members have years of experience with their businesses ranging from a variety of services; financial, legal, accounting, senior daycare, restaurant, real estate, and or a marketplace. Additionally, the RBTC board members serve or have served on foundations and nonprofits throughout the community that have fostered business, workforce development, affordable housing, education, and strategic planning events to promote entrepreneurship.

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Our Team

Board of Directors
  • Ashley Coplin, Chair (Executive Director, Demopolis City Schools Foundation)
  • Sid Rowser, Vice Chair (Director, Utility Services, Georgia Power Company)
  • Barbara A. Raymond, Secretary (Co-Owner, Insight Tax Solutions)
  • Aggie Ward-Scott, Treasurer (Co-Owner, Insight Tax Solutions)
  • Darius Allen (Materials And Logistics Manager, Mercury Systems)
  • Dr. Karen Braxton (Assistant Professor, COO, Braxton Senior Care, Entrepreneur)
  • Wanda Brown (Retired Educator)
  • Trenekia Taylor-Brown (President & CEO, Taylor-Brown Brokerage & Solutions, LLC)
  • Michael Cox (Vice President, Strategic Systems and Missile Defense Customer Accounts Business Development, Raytheon Corporation)
  • Myra Harris (Vice Principal, Greensboro Elementary School)
  • Trameika Hawkins-Lee (Pharmacist, Walmart)
  • Kevin Jacob (Comptroller, H&M Construction)
  • Lawrence Lee (Consultant, U. S. Department of Housing & Urban Development)
  • Loretta Moore (Retired Educator, Monitor for State Department of Early Childhood Education)
  • Sandra Norman-Eady (Attorney at Law)
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Dr. Aliquippa Allen, Founder and Executive Director 

Dr. Aliquippa Allen is a Demopolis native and spent her formative years in the Bronx, NY.  After graduating high school, she joined the United States Air Force (USAF) and returned to Demopolis after 28 years of distinguished military service. Dr. Allen joined the College of Business and Technology faculty at the University of West Alabama (UWA) in 2008. 


In 2013, 2015, 2017, she was appointed Chair for Business Administration, Management, and Marketing department, Associate Dean, and Dean of the College respectively, before retiring from the University in 2020. 

Dr. Allen holds degrees in Organization and Management, a master's degree in Procurement and Acquisition, a bachelor's degree in Information Systems, and an Associate's degree in Logistics Management. 


Dr. Allen served on the executive boards for the Marengo County Economic Development Authority, the Demopolis City School Foundation, the Demopolis Area Habitat for Humanity, and the Alabama Communities of Excellence.  She is a graduate of Leadership Marengo, Leadership Sumter, Leadership Alabama, and a National Small Business Association Leadership Council member.  Aliquippa is a local business owner, founder/executive director of a nonprofit, and a certified coach, trainer, and speaker.   


Dr. Allen's passion is to help rebuild rural communities in the Blackbelt, one small business at a time.

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Get in Touch

Rural Business and Training Center, Inc.

103 W. Washington St | Demopolis, AL | 36732 |334 - 216 - 4597

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