SBA Wyoming District Office Newsletter - Oct. 2020

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Wyoming District Office  - October 2020

u s small business administration

SBA Awards $19 Million to Expand Small Business Exporting

State Trade Expansion Program (STEP)

CASPER – The U.S. Small Business Administration’s Wyoming District Office announced $145,125 has been awarded to the Wyoming Business Council for funding to support export growth among small businesses through SBA’s competitive State Trade Expansion Program.

“The SBA is committed to assisting small businesses to enter and prosper in the global marketplace,” said Loretta Greene, Associate Administrator for SBA’s Office of International Trade. “Through SBA’s STEP awards, states provide small businesses with the critical funding they need to thrive internationally while creating jobs and strengthening their communities.”

The opportunities for small businesses to grow by exporting are substantial, especially during this unprecedented time.  The COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in a paradigm shift to increased web-based sales and virtual trade missions to reach 95 percent of the world’s consumers located outside the United States. Exporting is an important way for U.S. businesses to grow revenue and diversify their customer base.

“Over Two-thirds of the world’s purchasing power resides outside the United States. That makes exporting a critical economic driver for Wyoming small businesses that are ready to expand their reach into new and increasingly borderless global markets,” said SBA Regional Administrator Dan Nordberg.  “These STEP awards, in addition to SBA's export loans and U.S. Export Assistance Centers, make sure that small businesses in Wyoming have the tools, resources and relationships they need to take their businesses global.”

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nsbw wy

National Small Business Week Awards Presented to Wyoming Small Businesses

CASPER – The U.S. Small Business Administration Wyoming District Office, in partnership with the Wyoming Small Business Development Center (SBDC) Network and the Wyoming Business Council, presented this year’s National Small Business Week state-level awards during a virtual ceremony Sept. 22, 2020.

Originally slated for May 3-9, the annual celebration was postponed as a result of the widespread impacts caused by COVID-19.

For nearly 60 years, the President of the United States has issued a proclamation announcing National Small Business Week, which recognizes ​the critical contributions of America’s entrepreneurs and small business owners.

Wyoming State Auditor Kristi Racines delivered the keynote address, and Wyoming Business Council CEO Josh Dorrell, Wyoming SBDC State Director Jill Kline and SBA Office of Rural Affairs Senior Advisor Renee Bender provided additional remarks.

“I am continually amazed and taken aback by the innovation, the perseverance and tenacity of Wyoming’s small businesses,” said Auditor Racines, who also led Gov. Mark Gordon’s Business and Financial Sector Task Force. “I think, especially this year, it’s important that our small businesses – particularly the ones we’re recognizing today – be celebrated this week and during this crisis.”

 The following businesses were honored during yesterday’s event:

  • Wyoming Small Business Persons of the Year – Brady Lewis and team, WWC Engineering, Sheridan, Wyo.
  • Wyoming Exporter of the Year – Aiden and Jesse Emilo, Rex Specs, Jackson, Wyo.
  • Spirit of Wyoming Award – Amber Pollock and family, Backwards Distilling Company, Casper, Wyo.

“There are many extraordinary companies in Wyoming, and many companies that are facing challenges they’ve never faced before and finding creative solutions, so we’re very honored to receive this award.” said Brady Lewis, CEO of Wyoming-based WWC Engineering. “This year does mark WWC’s 40th anniversary, and I’d just like to say we look forward to many more years of supporting our communities and our economy.”

Those who wish to view a recording of the event may do so by visiting:


Brewer Joins SBA Office of International Trade to Assist Rocky Mountain Small Businesses with Export Growth

On September 14, Patricia Brewer joined the US Small Business Administration’s (SBA) Office of International Trade as an export finance manager. With more than 20 years of underwriting and previous Small Business Development Center (SBDC) experience, Brewer is well-qualified and ready to meet the needs of Wyoming’s small businesses looking to grow their international trade.

“As an underwriter and a former SBDC employee, I have worked one-on-one with lenders and small businesses,” said Brewer. “With this new role, I look forward to combining what I’ve learned to give small businesses a high level of service.”

After earning a bachelor’s degree in international business from St. Mary’s University in San Antonio and a master’s degree in finance from the University of Denver, Brewer volunteered at the Galveston Small Business Development Center. She worked there for six years before transitioning to EXIM Bank, where she became one of the few bank employees who worked in multiple lending divisions: Business Credit, Trade Finance, and Multi-buyer. In the past three years, she processed more than $186 million in Multi-buyer transactions. During her ten years in Trade Finance, she completed 152 transactions supporting agricultural equipment, trailers, printers, heating systems, silos, and tractors. 

Brewer is also a senior fellow with the Partnership for Public Service Excellence in Government and a member of the U.S. Army Reserve.

“I enjoy working with customers,” added Brewer. “I like helping to put businesses together with the resources they need, which I can do with SBA.”

For assistance with international trade, contact Patricia Brewer, SBA Export Finance Manager for Wyoming, Colorado, and Utah, at (202) 798-7521 or email

Upcoming Events

Oct. 6: PTAC-USACE Northwestern Division Virtual Small Business Outreach (Free Webinar)

Meet PTAC and USACE Northwestern Division and District Small Business Chiefs — Learn how to do business with Federal Government; small business regulation updates; how small business can support USACE mission; regional tools (indefinite-delivery indefinite-quantity contracts); district mission and programs; forecast/contracting opportunities Fiscal Year 2021; and COVID-19 engagement. Learn more and register here.

Oct. 7: PTAC Lunch and Learn: Optimizing Your Website for Government Contracting (Free Online Meeting)

Wyoming SBDC Network Market Researcher Nicholas Giraldo will lead attendees through a discussion on how to make their website more effective in an effort to further their government procurement goals. Learn more and register here.

Oct. 8: Culture and Communication in the COVID Workplace (Free Webinar hosted by the Wyoming SBDC)

As the COVID-19 pandemic rages on business owners and employees are still navigating this new normal in all aspects of our lives. Perhaps one of the most affected areas is in the workplace. Without physical closeness to our employees and coworkers we must adapt and learn how to lead, communicate and work effectively from a distance. We must also consider the safety and health of our peers as we re-open our physical workplaces.

These are problems that can be solved, with lots of questions to be answered in order to do so safely. In this upcoming webinar series presented by the leaders of Align, you will have the opportunity to examine your COVID-19 workplace strategies and have all of your important questions answered by industry experts. Learn more and register here.

Other News

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SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loans Available to Wyoming Small Businesses

Small non-farm businesses in 11 Wyoming counties and one neighboring county in Montana are now eligible to apply for low interest federal disaster loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration, announced Director Tanya N. Garfield of SBA’s Disaster Field Operations Center-West. These loans offset economic losses because of reduced revenues caused by drought in the following primary counties that began July 7, 2020.

Primary Wyoming counties: Campbell and Converse;
Neighboring Wyoming counties: Albany, Carbon, Crook, Johnson, Natrona, Niobrara, Platte, Sheridan and Weston;
Neighboring Montana county: Powder River.

“SBA eligibility covers both the economic impacts on businesses dependent on farmers and ranchers that have suffered agricultural production losses caused by the disaster and businesses directly impacted by the disaster,” Garfield said.

Small nonfarm businesses, small agricultural cooperatives, small businesses engaged in aquaculture and most private nonprofit organizations of any size may qualify for Economic Injury Disaster Loans of up to $2 million to help meet financial obligations and operating expenses which could have been met had the disaster not occurred.

“Eligibility for these loans is based on the financial impact of the disaster only and not on any actual property damage. These loans have an interest rate of 3 percent for businesses and 2.75 percent for private nonprofit organizations, a maximum term of 30 years and are available to small businesses and most private nonprofits without the financial ability to offset the adverse impact without hardship,” Garfield said.

By law, SBA makes Economic Injury Disaster Loans available when the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture designates an agricultural disaster. The Secretary declared this disaster on Sept. 4, 2020.

Businesses primarily engaged in farming or ranching are not eligible for SBA disaster assistance. Agricultural enterprises should contact the Farm Services Agency about the U.S. Department of Agriculture assistance made available by the Secretary’s declaration. However, nurseries are eligible for SBA disaster assistance in drought disasters.

Applicants may apply online, receive additional disaster assistance information and download applications at Applicants may also call SBA’s Customer Service Center at (800) 659-2955 or email for more information on SBA disaster assistance. Individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing may call (800) 877-8339. Completed applications should be mailed to U.S. Small Business Administration, Processing and Disbursement Center, 14925 Kingsport Road, Fort Worth, TX 76155.

The deadline to apply for economic injury is May 4, 2021.