Isabella Guzman, Isabel Guzman, first Latina SBA Administrator,

Isabella Casillas Guzman confirmed as new SBA Administrator, a big win for small businesses

Isabella Casillas Guzman has been confirmed as the 27th Administrator of the U.S. Small Business Administration. A Latina business leader, Guzman is among a group of high-caliber Latinos that were nominated by the Biden Administration. 

Latinos nominated to the Cabinet, Isabel Guzman, Isabella Guzman, first Latina SBA Administrator

Isabella Casillas Guzman, first Latina SBA Administrator. (State of California, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons)

This past Tuesday, on March 16, the U.S. Senate confirmed President Joe Biden’s nominee with broad bipartisan support, 81-17 votes as Administrator of the SBA. In this position, Guzman will represent the more than 30 million U.S. small businesses and lead an agency committed to helping small business owners and entrepreneurs start, grow and be resilient.

Commenting on Guzman’s appointment, Senate Committee on Small Business & Entrepreneurship Chair Ben Cardin (D-MD) said: 

 “SBA must continue to be a lifeline for small businesses in the months ahead, and I am confident that Isabel Guzman is the best person to lead the agency out of the pandemic and through the economic recovery to follow. Mrs. Guzman’s commitment to equity and her deep knowledge of the needs of small businesses will make her a strong advocate for all small businesses in the Biden Administration. I am looking forward to working with Mrs. Guzman as we in Congress work to fine-tune SBA to better meet the needs of small businesses in Black, Latino, Native, and other underserved communities.”

Administrator Guzman will lead a workforce of over 9,000 SBA employees and administer the SBA’s portfolio of loans, investments, disaster assistance, contracting, and counseling.  Additionally, she will implement critical financial relief for small businesses impacted by the pandemic through the Paycheck Protection Program, Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program, Shuttered Venue Operators Grant Program, and additional support recently passed in the American Rescue Plan.

Isabella Guzman, Isabel Guzman, first Latina SBA Administrator,

Isabella Guzman previously worked in the SBA during the Obama administration as Deputy Chief of Staff and Senior Adviser. (U.S Small Business Administration, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons)

“Growing up in an entrepreneurial family, I learned firsthand the ins and outs of managing a business from my father and gained an appreciation for the challenges small business owners face every day.  Throughout my public and private sector career, I have been dedicated to helping small businesses grow and succeed,” said Administrator Guzman. “Now more than ever, our impacted small businesses need our support, and the SBA stands ready to help them reopen and thrive.”  

Previously, Guzman served as the director of the Office of Small Business Advocate in the California Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development where she served California’s four million small businesses, which employ 7.1 million Californians, the largest state network of small businesses in the country. Prior to her work in California, she worked in the SBA during the Obama administration as Deputy Chief of Staff and Senior Adviser. Guzman has also started small businesses as an entrepreneur. 

You might be interested: Innovative attitude: the 7 keys to becoming an innovative entrepreneur

 “I am excited to return to the SBA and serve as the voice of small business in the Biden-Harris Administration. I am committed to championing the Agency’s mission and helping equitably build back the economy,” Administrator Guzman continued. “I also look forward to working with the dedicated team of SBA professionals to ensure that the SBA creates and sustains inclusive entrepreneurial ecosystems for all of our diverse small businesses across the nation to thrive.”

business loan

SBA provides Disaster Assistance Loans for Coronavirus impacted small businesses by states

Disaster Assistance Loans will be offered to small businesses in designated areas or regions to mitigate the effect of the pandemic caused by Coronavirus. The loans will be available once each state Governor requests the assistance. Stay tuned to receive additional information on when and were those loans will be available.

disaster assistance loans

Small Business Administration (SBA) Administrator Jovita Carranza issued the following statement today in response to the President’s address to the nation: “The President took bold, decisive action to make our 30 million small businesses more resilient to Coronavirus-related economic disruptions. Small businesses are vital economic engines in every community and state, and they have helped make our economy the strongest in the world,” said Carranza.

The Agency will work directly with state Governors to provide targeted, low-interest disaster assistance loans to small businesses that have been severely impacted by the situation. Additionally, the SBA continues to assist small businesses with counseling and navigating their own preparedness plans through our network of 68 District Offices and numerous Resource Partners located around the country.

“The SBA will continue to provide every small business with the most effective and customer-focused response possible during these times of uncertainty,” Carranza stated.

SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loans offer up to $2 million in assistance for a small business. These loans can provide vital economic support to small businesses to help overcome the temporary loss of revenue they are experiencing.

Process for Accessing SBA’s Coronavirus (COVID-19) Disaster Relief Lending (Disaster Assistance Loans)

  • The U.S. Small Business Administration is offering designated states and territories low-interest federal disaster loans for working capital to small businesses suffering substantial economic injury as a result of the Coronavirus (COVID-19). Upon a request received from a state’s or territory’s Governor, SBA will issue under its own authority, as provided by the Coronavirus Preparedness and Response Supplemental Appropriations Act that was recently signed by the President, an Economic Injury Disaster Loan declaration.
  • Any such Economic Injury Disaster Loan assistance declaration issued by the SBA makes loans available to small businesses and private, non-profit organizations in designated areas of a state or territory to help alleviate economic injury caused by the Coronavirus (COVID-19).
  • SBA’s Office of Disaster Assistance will coordinate with the state’s or territory’s Governor to submit the request for Economic Injury Disaster Loan assistance.
  • Once a declaration is made for designated areas within a state, the information on the application process for Economic Injury Disaster Loan assistance will be made available to all affected communities.
  • These Disaster Assistance Loans may be used to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable and other bills that can’t be paid because of the disaster’s impact. The interest rate is 3.75% for small businesses without credit available elsewhere; businesses with credit available elsewhere are not eligible. The interest rate for non-profits is 2.75%.
  • SBA offers loans with long-term repayments in order to keep payments affordable, up to a maximum of 30 years. Terms are determined on a case-by-case basis, based upon each borrower’s ability to repay.
  • SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loans are just one piece of the expanded focus of the federal government’s coordinated response, and the SBA is strongly committed to providing the most effective and customer-focused response possible.

You might be interested: Coronavirus: Information for Communities and the General Public from NJ.GOV

For additional information, please contact the SBA disaster assistance customer service center. Call 1-800-659-2955 (TTY: 1-800-877-8339) or e-mail sends e-mail).

Hurricane Harvey recovery

Top 5 steps to your Hurricane Harvey recovery

Hurricane Harvey recovery is deemed to be one of the longest and most expensive tasks we will have to face in many years to come. Here are some insights from the SBA Administrator, Linda McMahon, on how her office can help. In New Jersey, we lived through Hurricane Sandy and it was a devastating experience for many residents as well as businesses without an appropriate recovery plan. Many never did recover. Reach out to the SBA to require help and assistance, do not delay! 

Hurricane Harvey recovery

Soldiers with the Texas Army National Guard move through flooded Houston streets (U.S. Army photo by 1st Lt. Zachary West Wikimedia Commons)


By Linda McMahon, SBA Administrator
Published: September 1, 2017

Over the past week, as the people of the Gulf Coast deal with the unprecedented effects of Hurricane Harvey, we have seen heartbreaking moments of tragedy, of lives lost, homes destroyed and neighborhoods left in ruin, as well as remarkable acts of heroism and compassion as the first responders and people of Texas and Louisiana help each other survive. I have visited Texas twice in the past week and want to extend to the Gulf community my thoughts and prayers, as well as my commitment to help them get their lives back in order through the resources available through the U.S. Small Business Administration. While FEMA addresses immediate needs like food, water and shelter in the aftermath of a declared disaster, the SBA is your partner for long-term recovery.

Experts say Hurricane Harvey will pose one of the longest and costliest post-disaster rebuilding efforts in U.S. history. If you’re a homeowner, renter or business owner facing the overwhelming task of cleaning up water-logged debris and starting over again, I’d like to share these first steps that are important in making your recovery a little easier:

  • Register for federal assistance with FEMA online at, or call FEMA at 1-800-621-FEMA (3362).  This gets you quickly connected with a  variety of recovery resources available from our federal partners, which includes housing assistance, grants and SBA disaster loans.
  • Check out SBA’s Hurricane Harvey page, where you can get information about how to apply for low-interest disaster loans for homeowners, renters, businesses of all sizes, and private nonprofit organizations.
  • The SBA is offering loan deferments on existing loans to businesses and individuals in the counties affected by Hurricane Harvey. Read this policy noticeDownload Adobe Reader to read this link content for more details.
  • Beware of scams!  If someone tells you they’ll help with your SBA disaster loan application or other forms of federal recovery assistance “for a small fee,” they’re running a scam. Federal assistance programs are available to the public at no cost. Ask for identification. Protect yourself from fraudulent building contractors by asking for appropriate licenses and local references.

Now the real work begins. The SBA is committed to standing by Gulf Coast residents and businesses for the long haul. We are committee to restoring the local economy over the long term and laying a strong foundation for future growth.

Hurricane Harvey recovery

U.S Border Patrol agent Mario Fuentes searches for survivors among the rubble of a mobile home after Hurricane Harvey near Rockport, Texas, Aug. 27, 2017. U.S. Customs and Border Protection photo by Glenn Fawcett (Wikimedia Commons)


Nely Galan Self-Made

Latina entrepreneur Nely Galán SELF-MADE an inspiring story of empowerment and self-reliance

Nely Galan Self-Made

Nely Galan, Author, Emmy-Award winner and Self-Made entrepreneur, founder of The Adelante Movement.

Nely Galán SELF-MADE, the inspiring story that celebrates the triumph of persistence and determination, touches the lives of thousands of women –and men- and encourages them to become rich in every way, money, family, love and abundant time to enjoy it all!


This week, entrepreneur, TV producer and real estate mogul Nely Galán launched SELF-MADE –Becoming Empowered, Self-Reliant and Rich in Every Way, her first book. Galán has made her mission to train and empower women to become successful entrepreneurs—regardless of age or background—so they too can become “self-made.”

The Emmy Award-winning producer and advocate for gender parity, Cuban born Galán started at the very bottom when her parents were forced to leave their country of origin and migrate to the United States. She worked her way up to become the first female president of entertainment of a U.S. Hispanic television network (Telemundo).

Although a big achievement in her life, she did not feel satisfied until she became successful in her own terms by building a real estate empire and a global multicultural media company that has created over 700 television shows and helped launch 10 channels around the world.

Always looking for purpose in her life, she then started The Adelante Movement (“Move it forward!” in English), a non-profit organization sponsored by The Coca-Cola Co., which kicked off in 2012.

Nely Galán SELF-MADE a thought-provoking book of empowerment

“This book is one of my greatest achievements,” she told in an exclusive interview. “It took me over a year but it is a unique tool for women to start their journey of empowerment and self-reliance,” she said.

Galán, a Psychology trained professional, nails down some of the most ingrained issues in women’s behaviors and offers profound insights into a woman’s soul. But the book is not only a soul-searching tool, it is also strategic and practical, providing tips and tricks for making money, saving money, and finding “hidden money in America,” some little known material that can push women into their self-made journey.

Prince Charming is not coming to save you

Nely Galan Self-Made

Nely Galan at Barnard College 2016 (Courtesy of the Self-Made Movement).

“From the time we are born,” Galán said, “we are dependent on our parents so issues of attachment are very insidious and they show up every day in our lives,” she explained. “When we are young, women have this secret expectation that Prince Charming, our husband or significant other will come and save us,” she said.

The Latina entrepreneur admits she had a turning point in her life the day she and her first husband decided to part ways and she was left with a newborn son. She remembers being in despair until a good friend told her she needed to “do the math.” She then went and made the most money she ever did in the following three years of this disappointment.

“We can also think other people or situations in our lives as being ‘Prince Charming’ for us, people or situations that will finally save us or take care of us,” she explained. “For instance, we expect our boss to notice we did a great job and reward us but reality is, they are human too!”

Galán experienced that disillusionment in one of her jobs as the manager of a small Spanish-language TV station in New Jersey, she narrates in her book. Despite her full-time efforts –“I worked 24 hours a day and had no life,” – the media company sold the station and she lost her job.

“That was another breakthrough,” she said. “Your job or the company you work for, your boss or your colleagues are not your Prince Charming.”

“By the time you are in your thirties, you have been disappointed by many people: corporations you work for, co-workers, your boss, your government, even your family and relatives. Then it is time to kill the fantasy and become your own Prince Charming,” Galán affirms. “With this book, training and mentorship, I help women to build their lives around themselves and succeed in whatever they put their mind into.”

“In your pain is your brand” empowerment for entrepreneurship

Nely Galan Self-Made

Susana G Baumann,, meets Nely Galan at Hispanicize 2015.

The most touching aspect of this book is that Galán explains her step by step growth as a self-reliant and empowered woman through her own most vulnerable moments. “I believe that pain is a gateway to growth,” she says in the book.

“Vulnerability is important,” she told “To be tough and strong in business, you have to recognize your mistakes and weaknesses but also own the parts you are good at,” she explains.

Being an immigrant and learning to live within a different culture put her in the best position to make a career in the Latino television market. As a woman entrepreneur, she had to struggle to be taken seriously in an industry dominated by men. When she was discriminated against, she used that pain as an unstoppable force to advocate for multicultural and gender minorities.

“Women have a great advantage as we are not afraid of talking about pain or our painful experiences,” she said. “I teach women to take their pain and build a business around it instead of thinking their pain prevents them to reach their goals,” she explains. Brilliant!

Entrepreneurship is not a short-term self-gratification road

Nely Galan launches her first book Self Made.

Nely Galan launches her first book Self Made. Click here to see reviews!

In detail, Galán explains how to start a business that can bring financial freedom and a rich life in every way.

“To achieve this optimal state, though, you have to make hard choices and lots of sacrifices,” Galán advises. “You need to clearly define your life-term goals and work your way backwards into the present, always keeping an eye on that final end,” she said.

Through exercises and sound advice, Galán guides her readers through a step-by-step game plan that includes falling in love with saving money, getting out of debt in a realistic way, saving a year’s salary before starting their own business, and even finding hidden money in their own home!

“You need to be prepared before you start your business,” she said. “While doing it, you can start considering what kind of entrepreneurial business matches your skills, find a niche to solve a problem, and the people who have this problem,” she shared.

Access to capital and other sources of hidden money in America

For the last four years, Galán has been touring the country with her Adelante Movement and speaking with women from all walks of life. One of main issues these potential or established entrepreneurs mentioned to her is lack of access to capital.

“However, they don’t apply for the money! There are government contracts and corporate contracts that are untouched because many of these women are unwilling or unable to fill out the paperwork,” Galán said.

The Adelante Movement is working with the Small Business Administration (SBA) to solve this hurdle. “I met with Maria Contreras-Sweet, another powerful Latina who wants to give money to women entrepreneurs, and we will help them promote government contracts and ease the application process,” she announced.

The idea is to explain in detail how government contracts work but also find opportunities through her website’s resources and mentorship with companies like Wal-Mart or Coca-Cola. “You can follow a Golden Triangle Approach by researching corporate, government and non-profit opportunities through their supplier diversity programs, low-interest rate loans, and federal and state tax incentives,” she explained.

Rigoberta Menchu and the entrepreneurial spirit that brings life into the world

Rigoberta Menchú in the March 2009 march commemorating the anniversary of the signing of the Treaty on Identity and Rights of Indigenous Peoples

Rigoberta Menchú in the March 2009 commemorating the anniversary of the signing of the Treaty on Identity and Rights of Indigenous Peoples

Towards the end of the book, Galán speaks with great emotion about the opportunity she had to bring Rigoberta Menchu with her on tour. In 1992, Menchu won the Novel Peace Prize for her work advocating for indigenous people in Guatemala and Latin America.

In her words, Galán describes the amazing story of an illiterate woman whose determination drove her to become a spiritual leader of a people. “Rigoberta taught me to dream big and imagine things that are not possible, and then remind ourselves that we need to ground those dreams in reality,” she said.

Galán ends her book stating that for us women, bringing life is one of our deepest urges and we have been prepared to take care of others. But now, she believes we need to create new pathways, new models for our daughters and their daughters, raising a generation that becomes self-made and changes the world around them.

“One of my strengths is that I complete everything I start. I get afraid but I don’t quit. Find the angles, build baby steps. Don’t overwhelm yourself but keep your grit, one day at a time, until you achieve the success of being self-made the way you want to be,” she concluded.



Tour Dates & Events

Don’t miss Nely Galán, SELF MADE’s author and founder, appearing live:

August 3 – Washington DC

National Association of Black Journalists/National Association of Hispanic Journalists Joint Convention and Career Fair

June 17 & 18 – Washington DC

White House Makers Event

June 14 – Washington DC

The United State of Women Summit

June 13 – Washington DC

SBA / Adelante Movement Announcement, 12:00 – 12:45 pm


Speaking engagement inquiries? Email:



Hair salons small business week

National Small Business Week Celebrates the American Entrepreneurial Spirit

Starting National Small Business Week, who better than our very best Latina Maria Contreras-Sweet, SBA Administrator, to address the importance of celebrating the drive, innovation and economic impact of the Latina entrepreneurial spirit. Please visit Our LIBizus section to get to know the Latina entrepreneurs we celebrate on Vamos, Latinas!


Hair salons small business week

Hair salons play an important role in the Dominican small business community.

By Maria Contreras-Sweet, SBA Administrator

What creates two out of three net new American jobs; produces close to half of our nation’s goods and services (nonfarm private GDP); and can be found, coast to coast, in every small town, big city and rural enclave?

The 28 million small businesses that propel our economy forward and define our national entrepreneurial spirit.

To be American is to have the freedom to innovate, take risks, create, transform and put in the hard work that has led to the successes – and failures – that define human progress. From May 1-6, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) will recognize and honor the critical and  life altering contributions of America’s moms and pops, manufacturing enterprises, Main Street retailers and entrepreneurs during National Small Business Week.

Every year since 1963, the President of the United States has issued a proclamation setting aside one week to “recommit to advancing these vital enterprises, and celebrate their contributions to our collective American story.” As Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen said, it was small businesses that powered our recovery after the Great Recession.

Rosario Gamboa

Rosario Gamboa, Canela Bakery

This year’s National Small Business Week, themed “SBA: Dream Big, Start Small,” will include special events in Atlanta, New York, Denver, Phoenix, San Jose, Oakland and Washington, D.C.

Tune in all week for live-streaming, beginning at 7:30 p.m. ET Sunday as we officially kick off the week and join me at @MCS4Biz on Twitter (link is external) or Instagram (link is external), and #DreamSmallBiz.

America is one of the few countries that gives entrepreneurs a seat at the President’s cabinet table. This allows the SBA to provide an amplified voice for small businesses and represent their divergent interests.

The SBA also offers an extensive national network of small business lenders and counselors that is unmatched anywhere in the world. Many innovators with great ideas and great potential do not begin with great wealth, so they need a great government partner to support their success.

The SBA offers the “three Cs” to help aspiring entrepreneurs start up and scale up by making counseling available, providing more choices and chances to secure capital, and by helping them seize market opportunities to commercialize their ideas. These risk takers will help make our lives more productive, safer, healthier and benefit society overall.

Capital: SBA fills gaps in the commercial lending marketplace so success in the small business sector is based on merit, not family wealth. To inquire about a small business loan, click here.

Counseling: SBA provides free consultation and advice to help Main Street succeed. To find a counseling center near you, click here.

Cecilia Arce, Verde Cleaning Services small business week

Cecilia Arce, Verde Cleaning Services

Contracts: SBA levels the playing field with big business by helping small businesses capture new revenue and new customers by winning government contracts, joining corporate supply chains, and exporting beyond our borders. To learn about contracting opportunities, click here.

This year, during National Small Business Week, we recommit ourselves to those fearless entrepreneurs who plan well, work hard, and dream big. Every business starts small. Many of today’s most recognized brands were once small businesses until they found an SBA counselor, lender or investor.

I came to this country as a 5-year old immigrant who didn’t speak a word of English. Today, I serve in the cabinet of the President of the United States. My story is possible only because of America’s promise and its entrepreneurial spirit. I’m proud to lead an incredibly talented team assembled from across the country ready to serve you.

Success in business comes one small step at a time. So dream big, take that next small step today, because the next great American success story could be staring back at you in the mirror.

SBA Administrator Maria Contreras-Sweet started three businesses in Los Angeles, including a community bank, before joining President Obama’s cabinet in April 2014.

Published: April 26, 2016 Updated: April 26, 2016 on the Blog – SBA Administrator


Maria Contreras-Sweet  SBA Administrator Maria Contreras Sweet small business week

Maria Contreras-Sweet is Administrator of the U.S. Small Business Administration and a member of President Obama’s cabinet. The SBA helps both Main Street and high-growth small businesses get access to capital, counseling, federal contracts, disaster assistance and more.

Exporting for small businesses now a STEP away with SBA

Carlos Medina, Pres SHCCNJ, Maria Contreras-Sweet, SBA Administrator, Luis O De la Hoz, SVP The Intersect Fund, and Tayde Aburto, Pres HCEC.

From left to right, Carlos Medina, Pres SHCCNJ, Maria Contreras-Sweet, SBA Administrator, Luis O De la Hoz, SVP The Intersect Fund, and Tayde Aburto, Pres HCEC.

Have you been thinking of expanding your business globally looking for new opportunities, maybe in Latin America where you dominate the language and have strong business and family connections?

For small business owners, it might be a scary proposition to get entangled with the import-export red tape but now The State Trade and Export Promotion Grant Program (STEP), a 3-year pilot trade and export initiative to make matching-fund grants for states to assist “eligible small business concerns,” enter and succeed in the international marketplace, might give you an opportunity.

About the Program

The STEP Program’s objectives are to increase the number of small businesses that are exporting, and to increase the value of exports for those small businesses that are currently exporting.

The program’s STEP services are managed and provided at the local level by state government organizations. The program is managed at the national level by the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Office of International Trade. At the state level, The Program has total Federal funding of $60,000,000, for use over a two-year period.

Under the statute, the 50 states, District of Columbia, Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands, Guam, and American Samoa, are eligible to compete for award of matching-fund grants. The ratio of Federal to state matching funds is 75% to 25%, except for high exporting states, for which the ratio of Federal to state matching funds is 65% to 35%, and territorial possessions of the Virgin Islands, Guam, and American Samoa, for which matching funds requirements are waived to a maximum of $200,000.

Services to be provided by states to ‘eligible small business concerns,’ under the Program include support for participation in foreign trade missions and market sales trips, subscription to services provided by the Department of Commerce, design of international marketing products and campaigns, export trade show exhibits, training, and other efforts aligned with Program goals.

Under the Program, in most cases the Federal government provides 75% of the funding required for the total project, and states provide 25%. However, for the top three states in value of exports, the Federal government provides 65% of total funding, while states provide 35%.

For further information regarding the STEP Program, and state-by-state information, please go to

SBA logo


How to Find STEP State Service Providers

  • Award amounts, program descriptions, and points of contact for all states, listed alphabetically[link]
  • Scroll down to table entitled “Current Grants by State,” and click on individual states for award amounts, program descriptions, and points of contact.
  • Contact (link sends e-mail)

Current Grants by State

State Federal Award State Match Award Total
Alabama $115,251.00 $38,417.00 $153,668.00
Arkansas $207,535.00 $69,178.00 $276,713.00
California $747,781.00 $402,605.00 $1,150,386.00
Colorado $195,938.00 $65,313.00 $261,251.00
Connecticut $350,000.00 $116,667.00 $466,667.00
Delaware $276,741.00 $92,247.00 $368,988.00
Hawaii $750,000.00 $250,000.00 $1,000,000.00
Idaho $346,708.00 $115,569.00 $462,277.00
Illinois $685,855.00 $228,618.00 $914,473.00
Iowa $190,000.00 $63,333.00 $253,333.00
Kansas $296,533.00 $98,844.00 $395,377.00
Kentucky $400,000.00 $133,333.00 $533,333.00
Maine $161,048.00 $53,683.00 $214,731.00
Maryland $518,413.00 $172,804.00 $691,217.00
Massachusetts $500,000.00 $166,667.00 $666,667.00
Michigan $750,000.00 $250,000.00 $1,000,000.00
Minnesota $564,132.00 $188,044.00 $752,176.00
Mississippi $540,100.00 $180,033.00 $720,133.00
Missouri $599,000.00 $199,666.00 $798,666.00
Montana $347,688.00 $115,896.00 $463,584.00
Nebraska $300,570.00 $100,190.00 $400,760.00
Nevada $300,000.00 $100,000.00 $400,000.00
New Hampshire $199,878.00 $66,626.00 $266,504.00
New Jersey $498,000.00 $166,000.00 $664,000.00
New Mexico $193,700.00 $64,567.00 $258,267.00
New York $663,893.00 $221,297.00 $885,190.00
North Carolina $746,800.00 $248,933.00 $995,733.00
North Dakota $287,694.00 $95,898.00 $383,592.00
Ohio $700,000.00 $233,333.00 $933,333.00
Oregon $450,000.00 $150,000.00 $600,000.00
Pennsylvania $698,613.00 $232,871.00 $931,484.00
Puerto Rico $288,650.00 $96,217.00 $384,867.00
Rhode Island $373,000.00 $124,333.00 $497,333.00
South Carolina $349,218.00 $116,406.00 $465,624.00
Utah $395,000.00 $131,667.00 $526,667.00
Vermont $174,461.00 $58,154.00 $232,615.00
Virginia $578,500.00 $192,833.00 $771,333.00
Washington $747,300.00 $402,346.00 $1,149,646.00
West Virginia $200,000.00 $66,667.00 $266,667.00
Wisconsin $712,000.00 $237,333.00 $949,333.00

Explore exporting with the SBA

Here are very reasonable steps the Small Business Administration has put together to help you start the process. Small businesses looking to increase sales and profit, reduce dependence on the domestic market and stabilize seasonal fluctuations should consider exporting. Consider these facts:

  • Nearly 96 percent of consumers live outside the U.S.
  • Two-thirds of the world’s purchasing power is in foreign countries.

Step 1: Register on and take the Free Export Readiness Self-Assessment

Create an account on and complete this questionnaire to determine if your small business is ready to begin exporting and get advice on how to expand into new markets. 

Step 2: Training and Counseling

The federal government offers free in-person counseling services to help small businesses obtain export financing and locate business opportunities overseas.

Located in major metropolitan areas throughout the U.S., these centers provide small and medium-sized businesses with local, personalized export assistance by professionals from the U.S. Small Business Administration, the U.S. Department of Commerce, the U.S. Export-Import Bank and other public and private organizations.

The U.S. Commercial Service provides a network of export and industry specialists located in over 100 U.S. cities and 80 countries. These professionals provide free counseling and a variety of services to assist small and midsized U.S. business export efforts.

The U.S. Trade and Development Agency provides this database of companies and individuals providing fee-based consulting services to small businesses interested in importing and exporting.

Take our online training course on exporting to help determine if exporting, as a business strategy, makes sense for your small business and whether the basic ingredients for export readiness are in-place.

Step 3: Create an Export Business Plan

Creating an export business plan is important for defining your company’s present status, internal goals and commitment. You learn how to develop an export plan by assembling facts, identifying constraints and setting specific goals and objectives as milestones to success.

Step 4: Conduct Market Research

Use market research to learn your product’s potential in a given market, where the best prospects exist for success, and common business practices. The Market Research Library (link is external) is the U.S. government’s repository of the latest information prepared by commercial and economic experts in U.S. embassies worldwide. Trade Stats Express is a powerful tool for identifying target markets.

Step 5: Find Buyers

Federal, state and local governments are continually organizing highly focused export events directly putting U.S. sellers and potential foreign buyers in direct contact. Opportunities range from meeting foreign buyer delegations at select U.S. trade shows to signing up for a foreign trade mission or trade show overseas.

Step 6: Investigate Financing Your Small Business Exports, Foreign Investment or Projects

Become familiar with SBA’s export loan programs and other federal government financing, insurance and grant programs to help your company finance its transactions and assist in carrying your export operations. These resources help small businesses ensure foreign payment and manage or remove risk from the equation for both the business and its bank.


This information was reposted from the SBA site

Hipatia Lopez partipates at 2015 SBM Summit

Empanada Fork selected to the Small Business Leadership Summit in D.C.

Hipatia Lopez, inventor of Empanada Fork, participates at 2015 SBM Summit

Hipatia Lopez, inventor of Empanada Fork, participates at 2015 Small Business Majority Summit

Hipatia Lopez, founder and owner of HL Unico LLC and inventor of the ethnic kitchen tool Empanada Fork, was selected as one of 100+ small business leaders from across the country to meet with policymakers, issue experts and senior members of the Obama Administration. The focus of the summit involved identifying policies to help small businesses thrive at the Small Business Majority’s inaugural Small Business Leadership Summit.

“I traveled to Washington D.C. to talk with policymakers and senior members of the Obama Administration about the top barriers to success entrepreneurs and small business owners face, and identify practical solutions to our everyday problems. The experience was extraordinary,” Hipatia shared with LIBizus.

Panel discussions, keynote speeches, interactive workshops and presentations featured top policymakers at the National Press Club and the White House. Small business leaders heard from Maria Contreras-Sweet, Administrator of the Small Business Administration, Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and top economic advisors to the President.

Maria Contreras Sweet at the Small Business Majority Summitt 2015

Maria Contreras Sweet at the Small Business Majority Summitt 2015

“As an active member of the New Jersey small business community, I was honored to be selected to attend the three-day Small Business Leadership Summit, hosted by Small Business Majority,” Hipatia said. “Some of the issues we discussed were related to the gap between Internet-based companies and small “mortar and brick” business owners who feel they are getting the short end of the stick in tax issues,” she shared.

Other interactive areas of discussion focused on key issue such as problems accessing capital, tax and economic policies, crowdfunding, women’s entrepreneurship, minority entrepreneurship, the freelance/microenterprise economy, technology and workforce issues.

“We heard from the head of the Small Business Administration, Maria Contreras-Sweet and several members of Congress, and spoke with top economic advisors to the President to help them understand how important small businesses are to boosting the economy and creating jobs,” Hipatia said.

Policies identified during the three-day event will be incorporated into Small Business Majority’s policy platform—the Small Business Economic Agenda for 2015-16—and shared with decision makers to elevate issues of importance to small business owners.

Businesswoman of the Year Hipatia Lopez, H.L. Unico LLC

2014 Businesswoman of the Year Hipatia Lopez, H.L. Unico LLC, SHCC of NJ

Hipatia Lopez, the inventor of the “Empanada Fork,” an ethnic kitchen utensil that works as a pastry press, started her business around the kitchen table during the holiday season when her family was making 100 empanadas. “I remember complaining about how long this last step was taking.  I literally could not get this ‘idea’ out of my mind, envisioning how it would look,” she shared.

As many startups and small businesses, Empanada Fork encountered difficulties in obtaining access to capital, especially from traditional sources such as banks. “I obtained an equity line of credit with my house as collateral,” she said. However, now she needs additional funding to grow her business.

“During the three-day summit, progress was made, but more needs to be done. To instate policies we need to succeed—like greater access to capital and changes to the country’s tax code—we need more small business owners to speak out and get involved,” Hipatia said.

To voice your small business concerns, Hipatia encourages you to take Small Business Majority’s survey at:,

If you’d like to share your business story with LIBizus, please fill out this form and tell us about your business and products. We will post a FREE feature! (Certain restrictions apply. Limited time offer).

[contact-form-7 404 "Not Found"]


Latinas driving The Latino Coalition and LALCC Summit

The Latino Coalition (TLC) and the Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce (LALCC) will be hosting the Latina Procurement and Small Business Summit on October 9th, 2014 at the City Club Los Angeles. At the summit, TLC, one of the largest membership and advocacy organizations for Latino-owned small businesses in the country, will be announcing a new partnership agreement with the LALCC, a trade group corporation seeking to organize and unify Latino business owners by advocating and providing improvement member services for small and mid-sized businesses.

Left to right, LALCC Chairman Gilbert Gonzalez; CA Controller John Chiang; and LALCC CEO Theresa Martinez

Left to right, LALCC Chairman Gilbert Gonzalez; CA Controller John Chiang; and LALCC CEO Theresa Martinez

“The LALCC is looking forward to partnering with The Latino Coalition to help surround the small business community with critical information and resources needed to succeed in the entrepreneurial world today,” said Theresa Martinez, CEO, LALCC. “The Latina Procurement & Small Business Summit promises a diverse, experienced and talented group of leaders sharing valuable insight about the world of business, technology and a path to leadership. This will be a very exciting partnership.”

The exclusive one-day summit promises to present an exciting blend of speakers and pioneering entrepreneurs who will discuss ideas and innovations for evolving businesses.

“The Latina Procurement & Small Business Summit will fuel professional development opportunities, as well as provide small business owners with tangible benefits and the tools necessary to succeed,” said Hector Barreto, TLC Chairman and former Administrator to the U.S. Small Business Administration. “Our participants will gain better technology skills, capacity, capital and cost cutting strategies to navigate their current economic challenges.”

The day will focus on the economic influence of women and how they have been opening doors in a competitive workforce by encouraging opportunity. This year’s summit will feature a Latina Purchasing Power presentation by Nielsen and an exciting town hall format with Ibi Fleming, Senior VP and Managing Director of Herbalife North America; Pamela Gibbs, Director of the Office of Minority and Women Inclusion for the U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission; Anna Caballero, Secretary of the California Business Consumer Services and Housing Agency; Jeanette Prenger, President of EccoSelect; and Maria Salinas, Chairwoman of ProAmerica Bank.

TLC BoardM_Jeanette Prenger

TLC Board Member Jeanette Prenger

“In recent years, the number of women-owned businesses in this country has been increasing at a dramatic rate.  From 1997 to 2013, the number of women-owned businesses in the United States increased by 59 percent, significantly outpacing the overall 47 percent growth in business.  These women are not only rising to the top, but they are leveraging professional gains to fulfill their potential and will continue expanding the imprint they have on the economy and our country,” added Barreto.

Knowledgeable speakers, high-impact panels, networking opportunities and related activities will create an interactive environment between industry leaders and government officials. Panels during the conference will spotlight: Latina’s Success in Business, Digital Solutions, Procurement, Energy and Healthcare/Regulations. Sessions with top executives from domestic and global corporations will discuss technologies and strategies to help grow small business, access capital, new opportunities and existing challenges facing the Latino business community.

Featured speakers during the Latina Procurement & Small Business Summit include national business leaders such as: David L. Cohen, Executive VP of Comcast Corp.; Matt Koch, VP of the U.S. Chamber 21st Energy Institute; and John Walls, VP of Public Affairs for CTIA The Wireless Association to name a few.


ABOUT THE LATINO COALITION- The Latino Coalition (TLC) was founded in 1995 by a group of Hispanic business owners from across the country to research and develop policies relevant to Latinos. TLC is a non-profit nationwide organization with offices in California, Washington, DC and Guadalajara, Mexico. Established to address policy issues that directly affect the well being of Hispanics in the United States, TLC’s agenda is to develop initiatives and partnerships that will foster economic equivalency and enhance overall business, economic and social development for Latinos.