Blog Background



Karen Brown Stovell


Karen is the founding Executive Director of Forward Ever Sustainable Business Alliance (Forward Ever) the first urban affiliate of 80+ networks of the esteemed Business Alliance for Local Living Economies (BALLE), the fastest growing business alliance of values aligned entrepreneurs in North America, and LOCAL FIRST business networks in North America.  

Karen is a recent graduate of the esteemed Prudential Foundation’s Nonprofit Executive two year Fellows Program at the Institute for Ethical Leadership at Rutgers Business School – June 2015.

Prior to leading Forward Ever Karen worked as a Development Consultant for the Newark Arts Council, responsible for creating the strategy and development approach to increase and diversify funding sources.  Her experience also includes working as the Marketing Director at the Newark Urban Enterprise Zone, a state-wide program with the mission of creating jobs, bringing new business prosperity to the city, and raising the quality of life in the city, she led several major economic development projects and managed all marketing efforts for the agency. Prior to working in the not-for-profit field, she was a political finance director for two NJ mayors and had a career in IT on Wall Street.

Born in Newark, NJ, and raised in East Orange, Karen is a proud alumna of Douglass College - Rutgers University. She resides in Newark’s historic Forest Hill with her husband Arnold and their cat Brooklyn.  

Karen is a lifelong New Jersey resident with keen insight and passion for the arts and community revitalization.   


Kimberlee Williams

Kimberlee the Cofounder and CEO of FEMWORKS LLC, and Forward Ever. She is a part of the prestigious inaugural fellowship of the Business Alliance for Local Living Economies.  She is a leader in Newark where she is CEO and co-founder of FEMWORKS, an innovative and award-winning communications agency. Williams has a unique passion and expertise at weaving strategic communications and experiential events that succeed at reshaping perceptions about the vitality of urban communities. As a forward-thinking social entrepreneur with more than 15 years of business development experience in multicultural markets, Kimberlee Williams uses her native insight to broker relationships that tap into explosive growth opportunities.

She is responsible for rebranding Lincoln Park Coast Cultural District, once a blighted neighborhood, into a national model and music destination that attracts over 50,000 visitors to the City of Newark annually. Mrs. Williams led the Newark based event planning team that produced the red-carpet premiere of “Brick City”, an Emmy award winning docu-series produced by the Sundance Channel and events for visitors of the NCAA Sweet Sixteen Mens College Basketball Tournament.