Jessie Yankee

Jessie has led the MoWBC team since February 2018. Serving in this role has allowed Jessie the privilege of combining both work and passion through assisting women in entrepreneurship, economic development, and cultivating small business growth in her community.

Jessie attended the University of Missouri and graduated with a Bachelors of Business Administration – Management, followed by a Masters of Business Administration from William Woods University. While in school, Jessie worked for the Missouri Small Business and Technology Development Centers, where she was first introduced to the world of entrepreneurship. Shortly after receiving her MBA, Jessie opened her first business, EasyPC IT & Computer Repair, which she ran for 7 years before being acquired. She describes it as nothing less than fate that shortly following the sale of her business, the directorship for the MoWBC opened up, describing the opportunity as “meant to be.”

Jessie serves on the Heart of Missouri United Way Board of Directors, the Chamber Small Business Committee, and Chamber Ambassadors. Her greatest “lady boss” inspirations are local business owners Erica Pefferman, of Columbia Business Times, and Susan Hart, of Huebert Builders. Jessie hopes to inspire and mentor other women the way these two women have led so many in the Columbia community.


Jamie C. Tchakoua
Communications Specialist

Jamie promotes the MoWBC’s mission, vision and events designed to help women entrepreneurs unlock their business dreams to the public and the press.

An East St. Louis, Illinois native, Jamie graduated from the Missouri School of Journalism with an emphasis in strategic communication. She has work and volunteer experiences in both broadcast journalism and public relations.

Jamie currently holds a master’s degree and a certificate in nonprofit management from the MU Truman School of Public Affairs, and is pursuing a second master’s degree in journalism. While pursuing graduate studies, she produced videos, radio and web stories for the University of Missouri’s media relations office, and more recently for the Missouri Department of Corrections.

Jamie also volunteers as the communications chair of the Mizzou Black Alumni Network Board of Directors, marketing chair for Columbia Access Television board, and has been recently appointed as an advisory board member for the Career and Technical Education program at East St. Louis Senior High School. She is a current Active Voice fellow through the Student Press Law Center in Washington, D.C., working to empower the voices of high school women. Prior to her transition to the Women’s Business Center, Jamie served as the deputy director of Communications for the Missouri Secretary of State’s office.

She wants nothing more than to pay it forward by encouraging others to shine the light they’ve been given. To this end, Jamie independently consults with executive directors, pastors and authors under the auspices of her own business, Shining Light Media.


Sherry Major
Business Coach and Training Coordinator 

Sherry provides training and coaching to potential and existing business owners in our eight-county service area, and coordinates workshops presenters and an array of topics that will benefit our clients on their entrepreneurial journey.

Born and raised in St. Louis, Missouri, Major came to Columbia to study Marketing Education at the University of Missouri and has been in the Columbia area ever since. Major has had several positions including Marketing Director of Capital and Columbia Malls,  Advertising Sales, High School Business Management and Marketing Instructor,  Director of a Sylvan Learning Center and most recently Business Development for a local payroll processing company.

During her time teaching, she earned a Master’s in Business Administration degree from William Woods University.

Major is an active member in several organizations including Chamber of Commerce, Women’s Network, Metro Rotary, Elks Lodge 594, and the D.O.L.L.S.

Major’s passion is working with entrepreneurs to develop their ideas into practice, and to help them maximize their talents and abilities.


Jenny Phillips
Administrative Assistant

Jenny ensures that the day-to-day operations of the Missouri Women’s Business Center are maintained and streamlined due to her strength in organizational skills.


Learn more about our advisory board and their affiliations, as well as our community sponsors and partners.