Thousands of Arizona businesses applied to be a part of the NFL’s Business Connect program, but only a little more than 200 were selected.
Qualifications include being majority owned by a minority, female, LGBTQ+ or veteran. Also, the business must be based in Arizona.
Companies ranging from florists to security are selected as part of a resource guide as Super Bowl events are planned.
They also have the opportunity to attend networking events with major companies and the opportunity to compete for Super Bowl contracts.
One such business, Simply Celeste’s.
The catering company is owned by Celeste Talley, who started the business in 2016
“I learned from my dad that he owned a restaurant called Hearts of Lettuce in the early ’90s,” Talley said.
Although she lost her father for a year to own her business, she continued to grow. His company now caters events, and Talley even cooks for some celebrities.
Now she’s hoping being selected for the NFL’s Business Connect program will further boost her career.
“I’m an African-American woman, so falling into two categories that stand out, it’s really a game changer for me because sometimes I don’t have opportunities,” Talley said.
“At this point in the planning process we have more Super Bowl contracts with Business Connect providers than at any other Super Bowl,” said Arizona Super Bowl Host Committee Chairman Jay Parry.
Parry said the main goal is to leave a lasting legacy.
“Long after the game is played, we want to make sure our business community is stronger,” Parry said.