SBA News to Share From Region 4- August 2012

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August 2012

SBA Region 4 Monthly News

Brought to you by the U.S. Small Business Administration
Cassius Butts

Cassius Butts, Regional Administrator

Operation Boots to Business Introduces Returning Veterans to Entrepreneurship
Each year, 250,000 service members make the transition from military service to civilian life.  One of the greatest responsibilities our nation has is to honor and support these men and women.  The Obama Administration is committed to providing a seamless transition from active duty to civilian life, and the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is committed to doing its part. Veterans already over-index in entrepreneurship.  In fact, nine percent of all U.S. firms are owned by veterans.  More than 2.4 million veteran-owned businesses employ more than 5.8 million individuals.  About one quarter of veterans say they are interested in starting or buying their own business.

SBA Employee of the Month to Highlight


Barbara "Dale" Lowder, SBA South Carolina District Office

Barbara “Dale” Lowder joined the SBA South Carolina District Office in September 1991 as one of five legal staff. One year later, she became District Counsel. Now a one-woman legal department, Dale serves both the office’s loan and contracting program divisions. “I have an open door policy,” Dale says. “I see myself as part of a team approach while maintaining legal objectivity as District Counsel.” Dale’s duties range from 504 loan closings to franchise reviews to legal reviews of mentor-protégé and joint-venture agreements. She even regularly answers lenders’ SBA loan eligibility questions. Dale’s work also extends beyond the South Carolina office. In fact, she often assists with legal work in other Region IV district offices. Dale is a Special Assistant U.S. Attorney and certified by the South Carolina Supreme Court as a bankruptcy specialist.

What's Happening for Small Business in Your State?

Tom Todt

SBA Alabama District Office

Thomas Todt, District Director

The SBA Alabama District Office and Stover & Associates, Inc. will offer 7(j) training on “Proposal Preparation” September 6, 2012 at the Alabama District Office. Topics covered will include: the proposal review process, developing the tech proposal, strategizing for a winning price, how RFP elements influence strategy, past performance and how the winner is selected. The training will run from 8:30 am until 5:00 pm and is offered to 7(j) and 8(a) eligible companies. There is no cost for the workshop, but seating is limited. To register, contact Stover & Associates at the link provided below.
Date: September 6, 2012
Time: 8:30 – 5:00
Location: SBA Alabama District Office, 801 Tom Martin Drive, Suite 201, Birmingham, AL 35211
For further information, contact: Phyllis Embree/Chris Strudthoff at (770) 423-9888

Wilfredo Gonzalez

SBA North Florida District Office

Wilfredo J. Gonzalez, District Director

The North Florida District Office has been focused on providing veteran entrepreneurs with the support they need to be successful. Natalie Hall, the veteran’s representative for the office has been participating in a series of events called the “Yellow Ribbon Reintegration Program”, which provides programs and services to veterans returning from deployment as well as their spouses. Ms. Hall also participated in a pilot for the revised TAP curriculum at the Jacksonville Naval Air Station (NAS). Starting next year the SBA will be delivering an entrepreneurial track for the TAP program.
SBA will also participate in the Small Business Development Center’s Annual Veteran’s Conference scheduled for August 29, 2012 at the University of North Florida. Calvin Jenkins, SBA Deputy Associate Administrator for Government Contracting & Business Development, and Wilfredo J. Gonzalez, SBA District Director, will be speaking at the conference. For more information on the Veteran’s Conference please click HERE.

Pancho Marrero

SBA South Florida District Office

Francisco "Pancho" Marrero

The SBA South FL District Office will sign a Strategic Alliance Memorandum with the City of Jupiter on Wednesday, August 29 at 1 pm in the Jupiter City Council Chambers located at 210 Military Trail, Jupiter, FL  33458.  The signing formalizes the working relationship between the SBA and the City to spur economic development and job creation through entrepreneurship and small business growth.  The alliance will work together to offer quarterly workshops that focus on starting, expanding, and financing a business.  Jonel Hein, SBA Deputy District Director will sign the SAM and Vincent Lopresti will manage the relationship for SBA.

Terri Denison

SBA Georgia District Office

Terri Denison, District Director

On August 22, Georgia District Director Terri Denison will represent SBA as a panelist for the plenary session of a Nigerian-American Investment Summit in Atlanta hosted by the Consulate-General of Nigeria.  She will be addressing issues about trade and global commerce and the role SBA plays in international trade and business development.  For more information on the event, please click HERE.

Ralph Ross

SBA Kentucky District Office

Ralph Ross, District Director

The Women’s Business Center of Kentucky is celebrating its first year of operation with the First Annual Women’s Small Business Expo and Networking Reception on August 27 – 28, 2012 in Louisville, KY.  Participants will be able to showcase their businesses, network with other attendees and meet procurement officers, lenders and small business service providers.   There will be breakout sessions by leading experts in the small business community designed to boost the business bottom line and teach best practices.     
The Networking Session will be from 5:30 – 8:00 pm on Monday, August 27.  The Expo and Breakout Sessions will be from 7:30 am – 5:00 pm on Tuesday, August 28.  All events will be at the Galt House Hotel in Louisville.  Ms. Eleanor Jordan, Executive Director with the Kentucky Commission on Women, and Ralph Ross, SBA Kentucky District Director, will offer opening remarks.  Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer, a successful entrepreneur, businessman and philanthropist, will introduce the Luncheon Keynote Speaker, Ms. Moira Forbes, President and Publisher of ForbesWoman.   
For more information about the First Annual Women’s Business Expo and Networking, contact the Women’s Business Center of Kentucky. 

Janita Stewart

SBA Mississippi District Office

Janita Stewart, District Director

The Mississippi District recognized its FY2011 Top Lenders and Top CDC on July 26th during the 2012 Mississippi Statewide Lenders Conference held in Biloxi.  In addition to congressional and local public officials who were on hand to welcome the attendees, SBA experts from across the country conducted workshop sessions and the Keynote Luncheon Speaker was Bob Coleman, Publisher of Coleman Publishing.  Small businesses who have received SBA assistance also gave testimonials on how SBA loan assistance helped make their businesses successful. 
With the current fiscal year coming to a close, the Mississippi District and Gulfport Branch Offices continue efforts in marketing and outreach to Mississippi small businesses and entrepreneurs’ educating them on the nuances of SBA’s various loan programs.  We are also promoting the SBA Veterans Operation Boots to Business Program throughout the state.  For more information on this initiative, visit:  Also, visit for information on upcoming events and activities.

Lynn Douthett

SBA North Carolina District Office

Lynn Douthett, District Director

SBA Deputy Administrator Marie Johns visited Charlotte, NC on August 2.
During her trip, she toured B. Roberts Foods, a Charlotte manufacturer. The company produces and packages high-end ready-to-eat and ready-to-cook meals for the super market industry. Co-owner Robert Shore led the tour of the plant. B. Roberts Foods received $5.5 million in financing through SBA's 504 Loan Program, with the help of Self-Help Ventures Fund and Fifth Third Bank. The loan helped them to move into a 97,000 sq. ft. facility and create 45 new jobs. B. Roberts employs 150. The tour was covered by TV stations FOX Charlotte and News 14 Carolina.

Elliott Cooper

SBA South Carolina District Office

Elliott Cooper, District Director

Did you know South Carolina has a Women’s Business Center? Women’s Business Centers are part of SBA’s network of resource partners providing free and confidential small business counseling. Located in Charleston, the South Carolina Women’s Business Center (SCWBC) offers free one-on-one consulting, monthly free evening networking sessions and low-cost business training during evenings and weekends. The SCWBC, which is hosted by the Center for Women, opened in January 2012, making it the newest SBA resource partner in the state. Although based in Charleston, it offers email and telephone counseling to entrepreneurs across the state. Over the next five years, the SCWBC also plans to open locations in the Upstate, Pee Dee, Lowcountry and Midlands. For more information, visit or call the Center at 843-763-7333.
Walter Perry

SBA Tennessee District Office

Walter Perry, District Director

SBA Tennessee Lender Awards Presented 
The Tennessee District recognized top lenders serving the small business community in fiscal year 2011 at its annual awards event held July 25, 2012, in Nashville. The awards program, sponsored by the Tennessee Small Business Development Centers, recognized top performing SBA lenders in 13 categories for fiscal year 2011.  Jeanne Hulit,  SBA’s Associate Administrator for Capital Access,  held a roundtable with the lenders in attendance to discuss new SBA loan programs and initiatives, including Small Loan Advantage 2.0 , and changes to the CAPLines Loan Program that have improved the efficiency of the program. Roundtable participants included winners of the lenders awards along with leadership of the Tennessee Small Business Development Centers and Tennessee Bankers Association. “We’re proud to honor our SBA lenders here in the Volunteer State because they are providing the capital necessary to grow our small business community and create jobs,” said SBA Tennessee District Director, Walter Perry. Statewide loan volume for fiscal year 2011 totaled $283 million as a result of 584 loans approved in Tennessee.
Beginning September 1st the Tennessee District Office will have a new address in Nashville: U.S. Small Business Administration, 2 International Plaza, Suite 500, Nashville, Tennessee, 37217, 615-736-5881.  The former location, 50 Vantage Way, Suite 201, Nashville, TN 37228 will be vacated by August 31st.   The TN DO satellite office in Memphis, Renaissance Business Center, 555 Beale Street, Memphis, TN 38103, 901-526-9300 will remain open at its current location.


Access Calendar HERE


Advocacy Announces Seattle Symposium on Small Business Innovation and Entrepreneurship

What does a startup company need to succeed? How does government impact the startup process? What is the role of innovation and how do we nurture it?  Please join the Office of Advocacy on September 19th for a symposium titled Small Business and Government: Maximizing Entrepreneurship, Driving Innovation, Next 50 event in celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Seattle World’s Fair.
Boots to Business Logo

Learn More HERE