Stephanie Gilchrist, Mahoning Valley native and Youngstown resident, is the Regional Director of The Minority Business Assistance Center (MBAC) hosted at the Youngstown Business Incubator (YBI).
Gilchrist joined the YBI in 2014 and served as the Project Coordinator for Tech Block Building 5, overseeing the $5.7 million project. In 2016 and 2021, respectively, Gilchrist along with the YBI team developed two programs, Women in Entrepreneurship (WE) and Youth in Entrepreneurship Programs. She changed roles October 2021 to become the Regional Director of The Minority Business Assistance Center- Youngstown Region serving 7 counties.
In late 2017, Gilchrist decided to take a leap of faith and move into the role as Executive Director for Inspiring Minds Youngstown. This is a nonprofit outreach organization that works with under-represented youth in our community and aims to engage, inspire and empower students through education and exposure to new experiences. In 2020, she and her students were featured on NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt for the Inspiring America Segment.
After three years at Inspiring Minds Youngstown, Gilchrist decided to develop alongside her colleagues, another program but this time it would include youth. In 2021, the YBI kicked off the Youth in Entrepreneurship Program, which was listed in December 2021 as an honoree in Inc. Magazine’s Best in Business.
Gilchrist, alongside her husband, owns Ryan’s Chair Barber and Beauty Salon which has been in the community for over 25 years. Together they are proud parents of two sons, grandparents. Their youngest son, Ian, who is now 15 was diagnosed with Autism at age 3 and she and her husband have been an advocate ever since.
Gilchrist earned her bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Youngstown State University in 2005. In 2017, she completed the Executive MBA program through Strayer University. Currently, she is enrolled in the Certified Business Advisor Program at Kent State University.
She was recognized has been recognized as the 2018 Youngstown Business and Professional Women’s Business Woman of the Year, recognized by her Alma Mater, Youngstown State University, as a 2020 Penguin Woman on the Move, and one of the Honorees for the 2020 League of Women Voters of Greater Youngstown Women's Hall of Fame.
Gilchrist serves on the Community Foundation of the Mahoning Valley’s Fund for Women and Girls Guiding Circle, The Valley Economic Development Partner’s Board of Directors & Loan Fund Committee, and on the Choffin Career Center Entrepreneurship Advisory Committee.