Friday, Jan. 29, 2010 | 6 a.m.
Berna Rhodes-Ford could be viewed as a small business owner’s best friend.
Whether it’s navigating the early stages of starting a company, handling legal issues regarding day-to-day operations or drafting employee/employer agreements, Rhodes-Ford brings knowledge and experience, particularly in the health care sector.
Before coming to Nevada, she served as senior corporate counsel for Concentra, one of the nation’s largest occupational health care companies. With Concentra, she was directly responsible for all employment law matters. But she admits that the favorite part of her work today comes with helping start-ups.
“I love helping people who are forming companies. They’re excited about their companies. They can see the potential and are working hard to put all the right people in place. I just love helping those people fulfill their dreams,” she said.
As a child, Rhodes-Ford’s mother ran a home health care agency. That experience is what helped her gravitate towards the health care market. Today, after 14 years of experience, she is also ready to be a leader when it comes to helping women business owners. Currently serving as chapter president for the National Association of Women Business Owners (NAWBO), she sees the leadership role as an opportunity to “empower” women business owners.
“It’s a tough economic climate and I want to try to provide programming and support for those businesses,” she said.
By Brian Sodoma, Contributing writer