StartupNation and VerticalResponse (www.startupnation.com and www.verticalresponse.com) have launched the first annual “Leading Moms in Business” Ranking competition to recognize the achievements of mothers across the country who run outstanding businesses. Contestants interested in making the list can submit their profile at http://www.startupnation.com/leading-moms-2009. The top 200 winners will be selected by popular vote, with results announced in advance of Mother’s Day. ”These women are pursuing their passions and taking control of their lives by running businesses while also running their families,” said Rich Sloan, co-founder of StartupNation and one of the country’s leading small business experts. “StartupNation is excited to team with Vertical Response on the first annual Leading Moms in Business ranking and to honor these often overlooked heroes of American entrepreneurship.” Mom-run businesses are at the forefront of what’s happening more broadly in the business world, including trends like telecommuting, flexible work schedules and green workplaces. The Leading Moms in Business ranking will shine a spotlight on these exceptional businesses and the dynamic women behind them. Among other things, the ranking will focus on recession busting businesses, highlighting entrepreneurial moms that have implemented strategies to make their businesses thrive in spite of the economic downturn. “Mom-run businesses are a growing and vital force in the U.S. economy,” said Janine Popick, CEO and founder of VerticalResponse. “The 2009 Leading Moms in Business Competition is an excellent way to promote and share the accomplishments of these moms who run successful businesses.” To enter, contestants must be a mother and a majority owner of a business. Contestants must also have a website for their business.