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National Small Business Week – #SBDC Winners – #SmallBusinessWeek

Small Business Week

America’s SBDC is excited to announce that the Ohio SBDC at The Hamilton Mill in Hamilton, Ohio and three SBDC clients from around the country will be acknowledged and awarded during this year’s National Small Business Week. National Small Business Week honors America’s 28 million small businesses and their entrepreneurial, innovative and resilient spirit that serves as the backbone of the American economy.

In making the announcement, SBA Administrator Linda McMahon said: “More than half of all Americans either own or work for a small business, and they create about two out of three net new jobs in the U.S. each year. I couldn’t be prouder of all the awardees this year – they are working to grow small businesses, create 21st century jobs, drive innovation, and increase America’s global competitiveness. It is an honor during National Small Business Week to honor and celebrate their hard work and success.”

“It’s a pleasure to recognize the achievements of small business and the diversity and strength they bring to our economy. It’s too bad we can’t make every week Small Business week. It’s a particular pleasure to recognize all the SBDC clients who are being recognized for their success. America’s SBDCs are proud to be a part of their story and help them make their dreams a reality. But don’t forget that SBDCs are there for every small business, every week!” said Charles “Tee” Rowe, America’s SBDC President & CEO.


2017 Small Business Development Center Excellence & Innovation Award Winner
Ohio SBDC at The Hamilton Mill
Hamilton, Ohio
Mr. David Riggs, Director

2017 Exporter of the Year
Safety Sleeper
Rose Morris, Owner
(a client of the Pennsylvania SBDC)

Small Business Person of the Year – National Finalists
Hometown Trolley
Kristina Pence-Dunow, Owner & CEO
(a client of the Wisconsin SBDC)

Monster Auto Corporation dba as Guam AutoSpot
Derrick Muna Quinata, President/CEO
(a client of the Guam SBDC)

For more information about SBDC state, regional and district National Small Business Week Winners, visit our website at

Stay tuned to our blogs this week as we feature the national winners and finalists. Learn more about what they do and how their local SBDCs helped them reach NATIONAL success!

Find your local SBDC today!


Windows Open New Doors

Success Story: Connecticut

Cooper WindowsFrom an early age, Brian Cooper of Pawcatuck, Connecticut, was drawn to woodworking. In high school, he took the maximum number of trade classes possible, and during that time he built a Grandfather’s Clock. “Woodworking is in my DNA,” Brian says. Unbeknownst to him, he became the same type of craftsman his grandfather was, a family member he never had the opportunity to meet.

Brian started professionally as a boat builder and cabinet maker, and years later found out that his grandfather was also a boat builder and cabinet maker. He eventually inherited all of his grandfather’s tools, which had his name stamped into them. It is serendipitous that Brian is in the profession he is in. While working in the boating industry, the construction of wooden boats started to become obsolete. Brian wanted to continue to pursue his craft of working with wood and checked out a 18th century home. He dismantled it, preserving the 300-year-old wood, and started on the next phase of his career of restoring early New England homes and buildings to museum quality — making his own nails and windows.

Then a trend started where builders did not possess the preservation mentality and historic buildings were getting burned or bulldozed and not preserved. His business then turned to dismantling the entire building and storing it in trailers so it could be reconstructed in another location. Then a recession hit, and It was a painful time for Brian and The Cooper Group. He had to lay off 40 employees.  (more…)

3 Tips to Collect Payments Online – Get Paid Like a Pro

By RuthAnn Hogue

Get paid onlineYou know you need a website, but you’re not sure whether you want to take the next step to make it capable of accepting payments online. After all, potential customers can fill out your contact form. Then you can call them back or send an email with a link or any other number of options other than closing the sale by collecting immediately.

Such an arrangement would never fly in a brick-and-mortar store. Intuitively, you know this is not the best option in the virtual world. In an era of instant gratification, businesses need to be able to serve up what’s on the menu before customers leave your store.

True enough, but doesn’t one need a merchant account to take online payments?

The all-in-one option

Let’s say you sell tech-related gadgets such as cell phones, chargers and accessories. They come in various brands, models, colors and sizes. Posting an information-only catalogue detailing what’s trendy and for sale can certainly pique consumer interest, but it can’t provide immediate results. For that, you’ll need to add a payment gateway.

Fortunately, many ready-made online store options are available, including GoDaddy’s Online Store. In addition to providing an online space to promote your gadgets, it will allow you to immediately close the sale by collecting online payment with PayPal and all major credits cards. By using this type of all-in-one eCommerce solution, you get a seamless way to collect payment. The funds you collect are transferred directly into your designated bank account.  (more…)

Small Business Payments Toolkit – A Free, Informative Resource for Small Businesses and their Advisors

By Mary Hughes
Senior Payments Consultant, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis

Small Business Payments ToolkitThe Business Payments Coalition recently released the third version of its Small Business Payments Toolkit. The Toolkit provides education about payments and encourages the adoption of electronic business-to-business (B2B) payments by small businesses.

Visit this link to download this free resource:

Breaking Up (with Checks) is Hard to Do!

Checks are the main way many small businesses make B2B payments. Checks are popular because you don’t need to know the account information of the person or business you want to pay. However, the Toolkit points out that small businesses should try to reduce their reliance on checks because they are expensive, labor-intensive and expose a small business to fraud.

What Should Small Businesses Use Instead of Checks?

Using plain language, the Toolkit educates small businesses on the benefits of using electronic payment types such as Automated Clearing House (ACH) credits and debits, wire transfers, and credit and debit cards instead of checks. It explains the pros and cons of each of major payment type.

What’s New in the Toolkit?

Originally published in April 2015 by the Business Payments Coalition (formerly the Remittance Coalition), the Toolkit is now on its third version. Original content has been refreshed and new content includes:

Same Day ACH: An Important New Payments Tool for Small Businesses
Hot Topics in Payments Fraud (round up of latest fraud scams and threats)
Self-Assessment Quiz so small businesses can test how ready they are for electronic payments
• Updated content on Online and Mobile Payments Alternatives
• New links in the extensive Resources section  (more…)

Mapping Their Way to Business Success

Success Story: Colorado

North Line GISNorth Line GIS was founded by Mike George and Trip McLaughlin, after seeing a need for a GIS business to service the needs of the local community as well as the western slope of Colorado. Both Mike and Trip were employed full-time by others at the time of the start-up, so they were able to start the company with personal funds while building the business.

Although both founders have extensive experience as geographers, they needed assistance with ideas for managing and growing the business. After researching available resources, they contacted the SBDC to help them strategize about growing the company.

The SBDC director helped them to modify their business plan, including identifying metrics crucial to measuring their business success as they worked toward their goals. In less than six months since the initial contact with the SBDC, Trip is now working full-time with North Line GIS, and the company hired three more part-time employees to assist with the work being generated by Trip and Mike.

“We look forward to the opportunities ahead of us and the resources available from the SBDC to help us move forward.” — Trip McLaughlin


The Colorado Small Business Development Center Network (CSBDC) is dedicated to helping existing and new businesses grow and prosper in Colorado by providing free and confidential consulting and no- or low-cost training programs.

The CSBDC has 14 full-time centers and over 60 satellite offices with a team of business experts ready to help create and retain jobs, secure loans, increase sales, win government contracts, obtain certifications and more. Read more Colorado SBDC success stories here!