NEW ORLEANS, LA (KADN) — The U.S. Small Business Administration’s Louisiana District Office is seeking successful and inspiring entrepreneurs to represent Louisiana during the 2014 National Small Business Awards event hosted by the SBA. Nominations are due Jan. 17, 2014.
“This is the time to honor an outstanding entrepreneur in your area. Small business owners are so important to the strength of our country, and these awards provide an opportunity to celebrate their successes,” said Yolanda Garcia Olivarez, SBA Regional Administrator. Olivarez heads Region VI which serves more than 3.3 million entrepreneurs in Arkansas, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas. “Each day these men and women overcome obstacles with creativity and perseverance and help create jobs for themselves and others.”
The Louisiana Small Business Person of the Year will be selected based on staying power as evidenced by a minimum of three years in business, growth in number of employees, increase in sales, innovativeness of product or service, response to adversity, and contributions to community-oriented projects. The Louisiana award winner will go on to compete for the National Small Business Person of the Year award. Any individual or organization dedicated to the support of the small business community in the United States may submit nominations, including trade and professional associations and business organizations.
Michael Ricks, SBA Louisiana District Director, is excited about this year’s award process. “Small businesses are key to Louisiana’s economy and our continued growth. It is important to honor those who have gone above and beyond their peers in the community.”
Nominations will also be accepted in the following categories:
- Small Business Exporter of the Year
- 8(a) Graduate of the Year
- Phoenix (Disaster Recovery) Awards
- SBA Young Entrepreneur of the Year
- Family-Owned Business of the Year
- Entrepreneurial Success Award
- Financial Services Champion of the Year
- Home-Based Business Champion of the Year
- Minority Small Business Champion of the Year
- Veteran Small Business Champion of the Year
- Women in Business Champion of the Year
Nominees must meet the following requirements:
Small Business Exporter of the Year: An individual who owns and operates a small business engaged in exporting.
8(a) Graduate of the Year: This award recognizes a formerly certified 8(a) Business Development Program participant that graduated from the program prior to April 1, 2013. The firm does not have to maintain small business status after graduating.
Phoenix Awards: These awards are given to those individuals (business owners, volunteers and public officials) whose efforts and contributions have enabled their business or communities to recover successfully from a disaster.
SBA Young Entrepreneur of the Year: To be considered a young entrepreneur, the individual must serve as a majority owner and operate or bear principal responsibility for operating a small business with a three year track record, and the individual must not have reached the age of 30 by June 1, 2014.
Family-Owned Business of the Year: This award honors a family-owned and operated business which has been passed on from one generation to the next. The owner must also serve as a majority owner and operator or bear principal responsibility with at least a 15-year track record.
Entrepreneurial Success Award: Individuals must own and operate businesses initially launched as small according to SBA size standards and subsequently developed into large businesses. Nominees also must have received SBA assistance to help the businesses grow.
The following Champion award nominees may or not be small business owners:
Financial Services Champion of the Year: An individual who assists small businesses through advocacy efforts to increase the usefulness and availability of accounting or financial services.
Home-Based Business Champion of the Year: An individual who has experienced the rewards and difficulties of owning a home-based business and has volunteered to improve the climate for these businesses may be nominated.
Minority Small Business Champion of the Year: An individual who has fulfilled a commitment to the advancement of small business opportunities for minority business owners.
Veteran Small Business Champion of the Year: An individual who has fulfilled a commitment to the advancement of small business opportunities for veterans of the U.S. armed forces may be nominated. Nominees do not have to be veterans.
Women in Business Champion of the Year: An individual who has fulfilled a commitment to the advancement of women’s business ownership may be nominated.
Nominations may be submitted via mail to U.S. Small Business Administration, Louisiana District Office, ATTN: Melissa Daigrepont, 365 Canal Street, Suite 2820, New Orleans, LA 70114 or via email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Nominees for national awards must submit nominations via the SBA online nominations portal at http://nationalsmallbusinessweek.sba.gov/user .
For more information, contact Melissa Daigrepont, Public Information Officer, at 504-589-6685 or email@example.com.