National Women's Business Council Hears Feedback from Austin Entrepreneurs

July 7, 2015 - U.S. Small Business Administration South Central Region

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National Women's Business Council Gathers Insight from Austin Entrepreneurs

From Regional Administrator

Yolanda Garcia Olivarez

Regional Administrator Yolanda Garcia Olivarez

We were honored to host the National Women’s Business Council (NWBC) in Austin, Texas for their Public Meeting, four roundtable discussions with local entrepreneurs and business leaders, and an Austin Entrepreneurship Expo on June 23.

It was truly amazing and inspirational to see so many women caring about and encouraging each other to rise up and meet their highest potential.

The conference was not only very well attended, but there was also a lot of networking that took place. It gave everyone an opportunity to interact with each other and learn about their industries, their challenges and some strong best practices. I remember a woman from the United Kingdom who mentioned she was impressed with the women's business council and their strong support of women business owners throughout the United States. Also, there was a comment from one of the council members who said it is not necessary to re-invent the wheel, but to continue to share best practices and learn from each other, whether here in the U.S. or across continents.

The NWBC reports to the President, Congress and SBA. It is a non-partisan federal advisory council created to serve as an independent source of advice and counsel on issues of impact and importance to women business owners, leaders, and entrepreneurs.

Executive Chair of the Council Carla Harris said one of the biggest obstacles women face is still access to capital. This is an area that SBA continues to impact. We are focused on helping women get the capital, counseling, and contracts to grow.  We know that women can have a harder time than men, on average, securing a small business loan.  It’s our mission to address these disparities.  In the last 12 months SBA increased our loans to women businesses by 24% and we continue to support their efforts.

It is a proven fact that many women small businesses start with a small amount of funding, about $10,000, on average.  I encourage women to put their financial statements together, to put their business plans in order and be completely prepared when you speak to a lender to ask for the financing you need. 

The stats are incredible. Each day, nearly 1,200 new women-owned businesses start up. Today, there are 9.1 million women-owned firms who generate 7.9 million jobs with sales in excess of $1.2 trillion. Women entrepreneurs have never been more important to our nation’s economic health. Women-owned businesses will continue to grow with the support they are getting from the National Women's Business Council, and this Administration.

Amanda Brown moderates panel of successful business women

Amanda Brown, executive director of the National Women's Business Council, moderates a panel of successful women business owners who share their expericences with obtaining financing. Pictured are Christi Barany and Courtney Turich, owners of Monkey Mat and Gay Gaddis, founder and CEO of T3.

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South Central Region Office

4300 Amon Carter Blvd.
Suite 108

Fort Worth,TX 76155 

Phone: 817-684-5581

South Central Regional Office

Yolanda Garcia Olivarez, Regional Administrator

Phone: 817-684-5580    Email:

Darla Booker, Regional Communications Director

Phone: 814-684-5534    Email: 

Virginia Geary, Administrative Resources Coordinator

Phone: 817-684-5581    Email: 

South Central District Directors

Arkansas – Linda Nelson

Dallas – Herb Austin

El Paso Phil Silva

Harlingen – Angela Burton

Houston – Tim Jeffcoat

Louisiana – Mike Ricks 

Lubbock - Calvin Davis

New Mexico - John Woosley

Oklahoma - Dottie Overal

San Antonio - Anthony Ruiz