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Guardian Continues Support of Women in Business Through Renewed Partnership with NAWBO & Annual Entrepreneurship Competition
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Announces Call for Nominations for More than $30,000 in Prizes
Teaches Women Business Owners of All Ages to Save and Build Wealth

NEW YORK, September 30, 2008 — The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America (Guardian), today announced its renewed partnership with The National Association of Women Business Owners (NAWBO), a national organization representing the interests of all women entrepreneurs across all industries and the voice of America's 10.4 million women-owned businesses. Today also marks the official start of Guardian’s 2009 Girls Going Places® Entrepreneurship Award Program, a national competition that recognizes and rewards enterprising teen girls ages 12 to 18 who demonstrate exceptional entrepreneurship and community service.

“Guardian’s partnership with NAWBO underscores our commitment to the advancement of women in business of all ages and their strides towards financial independence,” said Katherine Readinger, Second Vice President, Guardian. “NAWBO has been a champion for female entrepreneurship and it’s fitting that we announce the opening of our annual Girls Going Places® award program as we celebrate the 20th anniversary of the passage of the Women’s Business Ownership Act. This act has had an enormous positive effect on women's entrepreneurship and is a cause close to our hearts.”
Guardian renewed an agreement to guide and support NAWBO’s network of more than 9,000 women business owners as they start, expand and transition their businesses in more than 90 U.S. cities as a National Corporate Partner. To encourage these women to secure their future, Guardian provides all NAWBO members and their families with discounts on insurance products to help them protect and build wealth.

“Guardian has a long history in their support of women entrepreneurs,” said Helen Han, NAWBO’s Executive Director, in Washington, D.C. “Their dedication to this cause and their sponsorship of NAWBO has made it possible for us to strengthen the impact of women business owners throughout the country so it is a great honor for us to work with Guardian through our support of the Girls Going Places® program.”
Now in its ninth year, Guardian has awarded more than $240,000 to teen entrepreneurs through the Girls Going Places® Entrepreneurship Award Program, which is partially underwritten by NAWBO. Every year, Guardian grants a total of $30,000 to 15 girls throughout the country which they can use for reinvest in their entrepreneurial projects or to save for college. Three top prizes of $10,000, $5,000 and $3,000 and 12 finalist prizes of $1,000 each will be granted.

Adults are asked to nominate girls - daughters, nieces, neighbors or students — by submitting a 750 word essay endorsing accomplished young female entrepreneurs. Nominees must also write a 250 word personal statement on entrepreneurship, business leadership, financial independence, or giving back to the community. A panel of judges will review the essays and select the competition’s finalists.

Guardian will kick-off the ninth annual program with one-day Girls Going Places® Entrepreneurship Conferences in conjunction with local agencies around the country. The conferences are designed to encourage financial literacy and educate young women about entrepreneurship and financial independence. Successful local businesswomen mentor the young women at these conferences, sharing their ideas and experiences as business owners and career professionals. To date, the conferences have involved the direct participation of hundreds of women business owners and organizations that advocate for women in business as well as thousands of students, local business communities and major universities.

"These conferences give us an opportunity to educate young women on the range of entrepreneurial opportunities that are available to them," said Diana Acevedo, National Manager, Girls Going Places® for Guardian.

Conferences in the 2008-2009 Girls Going Places® season will be held in the following locations:
· October 7, 2008 Athens, GA, Young Harris Memorial United Methodist Church
Sponsored by Peachtree Planning Corp, a Guardian general agency
· October 28, 2008 Rome, GA, Coosa Valley Technical College
Sponsored by Peachtree Planning, a Guardian general agency
· November 14, 2008 West Palm, FL, Florida Atlantic University
Sponsored by National Planning Corp., a Guardian general agency
· November 19, 2008 Union, NJ, Kean University
Sponsored by Northeast Planning, a Guardian general agency
· February 18, 2009 Fargo, ND, University of North Dakota
Sponsored by Foster Klima, a Guardian general agency
· February 27, 2009 Jacksonville, FL, North Florida University
Sponsored by North Florida Financial Corp., a Guardian general agency
· March 10, 2009 Pittsburgh, PA, Chatham University
Sponsored by Foster Klima & Company, a Guardian general agency
· April 21, 2009 Minneapolis, MN, University of St. Thomas
Sponsored by Lifetime Financial Growth, a Guardian general agency
· May 6, 2009 Fort Myers, FL, Florida Gulf Coast University
Sponsored by Alliance Financial Group, a Guardian general agency
· May 15, 2009 San Diego, CA, University of San Diego
Sponsored by Pacific Advisors, a Guardian general agency
Added Acevedo, "Girls Going Places showcases Guardian’s commitment to the advancement of women in business at even the earliest age, and is one of the many programs we have in place to promote entrepreneurship and financial independence. Year after year we have the privilege of meeting thousands of extraordinary young entrepreneurs who are an inspiration and an example for women in business of all ages.”

The Girls Going Places® award program attracts more than 5000 entries from young female entrepreneurs across the U.S. each year. Additional information about the program and nomination forms for the competition can be found at http://www.GirlsGoingPlaces.com. Program news, highlights and video can also be found on YouTube, Facebook and MySpace (Key Word: Girls Going Places).

About Guardian
Founded in 1860, The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America, New York, NY (Guardian) is one of the largest mutual life insurance companies in the United States. As of December 31, 2007, Guardian and its subsidiaries had $41.3 billion in assets (on a consolidated statutory basis). With close to 3,000 financial representatives and 80 agencies nationwide, Guardian and its subsidiaries protect individuals, small business owners, and their employees with life, disability, health, long-term care, critical illness and dental insurance products, and offer 401(k), annuities, and other financial products and trust services. Specializing in the small to mid-size business market, Guardian's Group business unit serves more than 120,000 employers, 6 million employees, and their families.
For more information about Guardian, please visit: www.GuardianLife.com.
SOURCE:The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America
Web site: http://www.guardianlife.com

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