Observations from the ball

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Editors Note: Adrienne Reaves-Taylor, the designer/production coordinator at Virginia Business, is covering the inauguration at the Capitol.

Photos and video from the ball mentioned below will be posted later

Entrepreneurs from across Virginia gathered Monday night for an inaugural ball at Key Bridge Marriott in Arlington.  Sponsored by SWAM, Small, Women and Minority-Owned Businesses — a certification program sponsored by the state — the ball drew about 100 people.

Among the crowd, decked out in sequined ballgowns and tuxedos, was Kamini Pahuja, chairman of Alloy Polymers Inc. in Richmond.  Her company provides compounding solutions and services to the automotive industry. Pahuja says that, even though the economy is down, she still is willing to put aside her worries for one night to celebrate the inauguration of the country’s first African-American president. 

Joe Reubel of Kerma Medical Products Inc. also attended. He drove up from Portsmouth, where his company manufactures soft goods, including burn dressing pads used by the military.  Reubel says his business is doing well, but that he welcomed a change in political leadership. “I’m ready for new leadership, a change in the administration,” he said. 

Another businessperson, Sanjay Puri, the owner of Optimos Inc. in Chantilly,  said Obama’s election “will give the world a better view of the U.S.” 

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