South Dakota District Office Updates

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South Dakota District Office  

u s small business administration

SBA Awards Over $5.4 Million in Grants to Strengthen Research Funding Opportunities Across the U.S.; SD Biotech Council receives $125,000

Administrator Isabella Casillas Guzman, head of the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) and the voice for America’s 33 million small businesses in President Biden’s Cabinet, has announced over $5.4 million in funding to 44 awardees through the Federal and State Technology (FAST) Partnership Program. FAST provides small businesses and startups, particularly those in underserved communities, with specialized training, mentoring, and technical assistance for research and development. Grant selectees qualify for award amounts of up to $125,000 each.

“When we enable equitable access to federal research funding, we empower more of our nation’s entrepreneurs and scientists to translate their cutting-edge ideas into commercial enterprises,” said Administrator Guzman. “This is why doubling our funding of FAST grants and expanding the network of awardees is so critical to building a stronger and more inclusive innovation economy that invests in all of our communities.”

FAST’s objective is to strengthen the competitiveness of small businesses and startups across the country, particularly those from underserved communities to help them benefit from the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Programs. Through FAST, the SBA continues to play a critical role in creating inclusive entrepreneurial ecosystems and helping American entrepreneurs grow their networks and revenue opportunities with new capital, a priority of Administrator Guzman.

This year’s expansion of the FAST program created 12 additional awards and expands the program’s footprint to 43 states and one U.S. territory. These organizations are led by state and local economic development entities, Small Business Technology Development Centers, Small Business Development Centers, Women’s Business Centers, Procurement Technical Assistance Centers, incubators, accelerators, colleges, and universities. The expanded reach of the program builds on the success of previous FAST cohorts. With $4 million in funding in fiscal year 2021, FAST helped small businesses to win over $88 million in SBIR and STTR awards, a 22:1 return for every taxpayer dollar spent.

The FAST program provides awards for a base period of 12 months, plus four optional continuation periods of 12 months each. Thirty-two FAST awardees from the 2021 cohort were also selected for second or third-year funding.

“In the past year, the FAST program positively impacted numerous South Dakota small businesses statewide by providing extra operational funds for conducting market research to grow revenue,” said SBA SD District Director Jaime Wood. “We’re pleased to have the South Dakota Biotech Council returning as an SBA FAST cohort member for an additional year.”

According to Joni Ekstrum, Executive Director, SD Biotech, the FAST investment propelled outreach across the state to spur innovation. “In the past year, we participated in several innovation-focused events, reaching hundreds of South Dakota small businesses. Innovation grew across industries from medical and agriculture technology to manufacturing,” said Ekstrum.  The new FAST award for SD Biotech is $125,000 to be implemented over the next year.

About FAST

In FY 2022, $6 million was appropriated for entities to carry out activities defined under the FAST Partnership Program legislative authority. Entities from all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, and the Northern Mariana Islands are eligible to receive funding to provide outreach, technical, and financial assistance. These efforts are focused on elevating and expanding the ecosystem support network that works with technology developing entrepreneurs, startups, and existing small businesses. FAST’s primary goal is to help tech entrepreneurs who have traditionally been left out of federal R&D programs by successfully applying, winning, and executing SBIR and STTR awards. Additional information can be found at 


SBA coordinates the SBIR/STTR programs, known as America’s Seed Fund across the 11 participating federal agencies. Over $4 billion in early-stage seed capital was provided in FY 2022 through over 7,000 awards to more than 4,000 small businesses. Federal agencies announce funding opportunities as either grants or contracts to address their research and development needs. Companies supported by America’s Seed Fund often generate some of the most important breakthroughs each year in the U.S. Additional information about the programs, as well as past and current topics can be found at



Did you know a fire can become life-threatening in just two minutes? Make sure you have an evacuation plan in place for your employees. 

Learn More


Illustration of a trophy with text, 2023 National Small Business Week Awards. Now accepting nominations. The SBA logo is included.

National Small Business Week Awards

The National Small Business Week Awards are back! SBA is now accepting nominations for its 2023 National Small Business Week Awards, including the Small Business Person of the Year. Could you be our next winner? If you’re a small business owner or know a small business owner with an inspiring story to tell, it’s time to submit a nomination!

A complete nomination package must be received electronically via BOX by December 8, 2022, 3pm ET. You answers should be in detail on forms 3301 and 3315 – it’s very important when it comes to judging the business! Our SBA Resource Partners can help assist, at no-cost, in writing your BEST nomination. You can locate a Resource Partner at  

Below is the list of requirements and forms, for your convenience:

  1. Review the National guidelines and instructions
  1. All nominees are required to complete SBA Background Form 3300
  2. Complete the Small Business Person of the Year Application Form 3301
  3. A digital photo– at least 300 dpi is required
  4. Review the South Dakota District Office Guidelines (this is where you will find the criteria for district awards)
  5. Complete the District Office Award Application Form 3315 (identify the district award category)
  6. Complete  Release of Materials Form
  7. Attach any other significant documentation (such as a nomination letter, letters of recommendation, etc.) not to exceed 10 pages
  8. Upload everything to our South Dakota District Office Box Account

Submit your nomination today!!  

Learn more




District Director Jaime Wood recently visited a business class at Augustana University in Sioux Falls.  Joining her were representatives from the Sioux Falls Small Business Development Center, SD CEO East Women's Business Center and Startup Sioux Falls.




Did you know the nearly five million Hispanic-owned businesses in the United States contribute more than $800 billion to the American economy annually? During Hispanic Heritage Month, learn about resources to help Hispanic entrepreneurs start, grow, expand and recover businesses.

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Illustration of a business with the SBA logo and the following text, Save the Date, National Veterans Small Business Week, 10/31-11/ 4/2022.


We’re excited to announce that this year’s National Veterans Small Business Week (NVSBW) will take place on October 31-November 4!  Each year the SBA during NVSBW celebrates, connects, and empowers service member, veteran, National Guard and Reserve, and military spouse entrepreneurs all week long. This year marks the ninth annual NVSBW.





Advocacy’s annual State Profiles gather the latest federal economic data into state-by-state snapshots of small business economic activity.  

The 2022 State Profiles are the first to contain data gathered during the COVID-19 pandemic. Three sections – business dynamics, small business loans, and small business exports – reflect 2020 data. The profiles also represent the first state by state breakdown of small business openings and closings during the pandemic as well as changes to employment.  

Learn More


SBA Upcoming Events 



Wednesday, October 26, 2022

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) and Public Private Strategies Institute (PPSI) will host webinars as part of their Building a Better America: A Small Business Resource Community (BBA Resource Community) series.

The goal of these webinars will be to connect small businesses with critical resources and information about the Biden-Harris Administration’s policy agenda, including how the Inflation Reduction Act, Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and American Rescue Plan create opportunities for small businesses.

Additionally, these webinars will feature training to help small businesses access and utilize these resources to grow their business and create great jobs. Through the BBA Resource Community, the SBA and PPSI will convene respected leaders from across business, government, advocacy, and economic development, to provide these briefings and training.



Photo of two people and a person tying on a laptop with the following text, SBA Cyber Summit on October 26 at Noon EDT


Looking for resources and tips to protect your small business against cyber threats? Join SBA for its first-ever National Cyber Summit on October 26, 2022 at Noon EDT. The free event will highlight tools, tips, and resources to help strengthen small business cybersecurity.  


Resource Partner News & Upcoming Events



Protect your organization and lessen its vulnerability to cybersecurity threats

In this one-day workshop, gain access to insight and cybersecurity expertise to learn steps on how to protect your organization and lessen its vulnerability to overall cybersecurity threats.

If you have government and/or defense customers or are interested in expanding your presence as a supplier in the government and/or defense market, this workshop is especially for you.

Most government and defense contractors must meet stringent cyber security compliance standards. In the foreseeable future, those standards will include the Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification (CMMC). However, even the most experienced Information Technology (IT) professionals find it challenging to comply with these cybersecurity controls.

To address these challenges, our presenters will provide hands-on training designed to help companies understand how to interpret the requirements and apply corrective action necessary to gain and maintain compliance.

Learn More




Do you want to learn about free, valuable resources available to inventors and entrepreneurs? Are you eager to be inspired and informed by successful innovators? If so, join us on Wednesday, October 12, from 1-4 p.m. ET, for the USPTO’s “2022 Hispanic Innovation and Entrepreneurship Program.”

This free event is open to all. Don't miss this chance to learn from successful Hispanic innovators about their creative and business journeys. You’ll also hear from experts about resources and funding that can help you on your own journey.

The “Hispanic Innovation and Entrepreneurship Program” series is presented by the USPTO’s Office of Innovation Outreach. For more information, please contact

And don't forget: The USPTO offers inspirational and educational events, open to all, that feature successful innovators from a wide variety of backgrounds. Come learn about intellectual property, innovation, and valuable resources available to independent inventors, small businesses, entrepreneurs, and underrepresented or underserved populations at our "Innovator events for everyone" webpage:




Monday, October 17, 2020                                           2:00 - 3:00 PM 

When was the last time you did a check up to improve your business’s social media presence? Do you see what your potential customers see?

Join Bailey Sadowsky and SD CEO West to identify key information areas on Facebook, Instagram/Reels, LinkedIn, & TikTok you need to keep your customers clicking and tapping on your page. Try these simple and easy updates, that are often overlooked by beginners and pros alike, to improve engagement on your social media platforms.

We’ll be diving into the bio sections of each platform, chatting about best posting practices, and the purpose of each platform in the eyes of your target audience. 

Come with your questions! Have your Facebook, Instagram, Meta Business Suite, LinkedIn, TikTok, and Linktree queued up! 

Key Takeaways:

  • Identifying key information to boost your social media platform bios

  • Simple posting strategies and how to use data to drive your goals

  • Keeping your customers engaged with current social media trends

This event if FREE!




Tuesday. October 18, 2022                                     11:30 am - 1:00 pm

The Holiday Inn Convention Center, Spearfish

Join SD CEO West for their Women In Networking with spotlight speakers, owners of the 2BrokeGirls Boutique, Kelly Gould & Ashley Kurtenbach!

Interested in promoting your business or organization? Bring a door prize! 




Tuesday, October 25, 2022                               12:00 PM - 1:00 PM (MT)

Is your digital presence on the NAUGHTY or NICE list? 

Make your business cybersecurity part of your checklist as you prepare for the holiday season! 

Join SD CEO East & SD CEO West for a FREE one-hour virtual workshop with Dakota State University Vice President Research & Economic Development – Dr. Ashley Podhradsky.  

The first 30 minutes includes a presentation about: Phishing, Cybersecurity, Social Media protection, Backups, and more! 

The rest of the 30 minutes is YOURS! Bring your questions or issues to help solve together.





How are we doing?? Take a moment to complete the South Dakota District Office Customer Experience Survey and let us know. Your feedback will help us improve the services we can provide you. Find the survey at: