Recent events ranging from Supreme Court decisions on affirmative action programs to the outcome of the O.J. Simpson trial have left issues of race, gender and fairness on everyone's minds. In the words of one entrepreneur we spoke to, "You want to believe you're going to get a fair shake every time, but that's just not true." What is true, unfortunately, is that women and minority entrepreneurs sill face distinct challenges in starting, running and growing their businesses. But the news is not all bad-far from it. More women and minorities than ever before are turning to entrepreneurship as a way to take charge of their destinies-and more area succeeding at small-business ownership. To celebrate that success, as well as to offer help in overcoming the hurdles, we at Entrepreneur present this special report.