Sabrina “Heymiss Progress” is an award-winning entrepreneur in the Madison community and founder of The Progress Center for Black Women. She is known as an inspirational leader and connector who brings people together and makes big things happen.
Sabrina is also a community organizer, poet, master collaborator and a proud mother of SaVance, a brilliant young man.
Sabrina grew up in Milwaukee amid a dysfunctional family and became a teen mother at age 15. Despite her struggles and circumstances, she was determined to make a better life for herself and her son. She moved to Madison with the hope of creating better opportunities for herself and her son.
She honed her leadership, public speaking and outreach skills as both a student and employee at Madison Area Technical College, where she worked for 10 years. She was quickly immersed in the community of Madison, and her speaking events took her to the national stage.
As she attended conferences and events in places like Washington, D.C. and Atlanta, one thing she quickly became aware of–and could not get over–was that Black people in Madison (particularly Black women) did not have the same access and opportunities as white people did. She saw a disturbing racial divide in businesses and the community at large despite the fact that many people in Madison were acting like everything was fine.
So she set to work to make the change she wanted to see. Under the Heymiss Progress brand she’s created the Black Women’s Leadership Conference, the Conversation Mixtape, the Black Business Expo, and the Black Excellence Youth Conference.
Sabrina Madison is affectionately known as “Heymiss Progress,” a nickname that comes from her father, who said she represented the progress of his personal struggle (a reference to a famous Frederick Douglas quote). And progress – one of her core values – is at the heart of all of her work.
Her vision for The Progress Center for Black Women is to create a Madison community where Black women proliferate as powerful CEOs, owners of local shops and leaders in their own right.