America’s SBDC congratulates Richard Jackson, Statewide Advisory Council member and Las Cruces business owner, for being selected as one of six finalists nationwide for the U.S. Small Business Administration’s (SBA) Small Business Person of the Year Award.
NMSBDC State Director Russell Wyrick said Jackson, who was also selected as New Mexico’s SBA Small Business Person of the Year, exemplifies the valuable work that SBDCs do.
“Mr. Jackson was an entrepreneur who saw a need in his community, had no prior background in his industry, but worked diligently to build a company that now covers Southern New Mexico and employs nearly two dozen people,” Wyrick said. “It’s that can-do spirit that NMSBDC nurtures and aids to strengthen small business and create jobs.”
Jackson was a sergeant in the U.S. Army for 25 years before retiring. He then became a race car driver, helped his wife in her Mesilla chocolate shop, and owned real estate before going into commercial loan banking. While trying to dispose of records, Jackson discovered that there were no local services available to the bank when the owner of the only document storage and shredding business in Las Cruces passed away.
Jackson bought the equipment from the business owner’s widow and created American Document Services, LLC, in 2009. Jackson now has 19 employees, has serviced more than 1,700 clients, and shreds 1.5 million pounds of paper. He also stores millions of documents annually.
Business owners are selected as SBA’s Small Business Person of the Year based on several criteria, including job growth, product or service expansion, employee and revenue growth, and contributions to the community.
“He gives back to more than 20 nonprofits. It’s not just money; it’s his time and whatever resources he has,” said Las Cruces SBDC Director Jo Ann Garay, who nominated Jackson for the award.
“Anyone that is wanting to start a business, I highly recommend that they do a lot research on it and go down and talk to the SBDC,” Jackson said. “It is challenging. You lose sleep at night wondering if you are going to make payroll, wondering how are you going to pay bills. But the first thing you have to do is believe in what you’re doing. If you don’t believe in what you do, it won’t work.”
More than 3,000 New Mexicans turn to the NMSBDC and its programs, the International Business Accelerator and the New Mexico Procurement Technical Assistance Program (PTAP),
for the expertise and hands-on assistance needed to start and grow their dreams each year. The programs are funded by Congress, through the SBA, and an annual allocation from the state legislature to provide no-cost business consulting, affordable workshops and business training to New Mexico entrepreneurs.
More than half of Americans either own or work for a small business, and small businesses create about two out of every three new jobs in the U.S. annually.
Jackson and the six nationwide finalists will be honored in a ceremony at the White House in Washington, D.C., on May 8.
Locally, Jackson and the other New Mexico SBA award winners will be honored during the New Mexico Small Business Week Awards Luncheon on May 12. At the event, organized by NMSBDC and the American Indian Chamber of Commerce of New Mexico (AICCNM), the NMSBDC and the AICCNM join the New Mexico SBA in recognizing the state’s business owners and key executives for outstanding achievements and contributions. The luncheon will be held during the AICCNM’s 9th Annual Native American Economic Summit, from May 11 to 13, at the Hotel Albuquerque in Old Town.
For more information about NMSBDC, go to www.nmsbdc.org. For more information about New Mexico Small Business Week, to buy tickets for the luncheon, or for information about the Native American Economic Summit, go to www.nmnaec.com.
About the New Mexico Small Business Development Center
Established in 1989, the NMSBDC is a statewide, nationally accredited program with 20 centers strategically located throughout the great state of New Mexico. The network provides no-cost business consulting, affordable workshops and business training. In addition to the 20 SBDC centers, the NMSBDC offers two specialty programs to state entrepreneurs. The International Business Accelerator Program is a one-stop shop of resources for businesses and individuals wishing to introduce their product or service into the global market. The Procurement Technical Assistance Program is dedicated to counsel, train and assist business owners in obtaining government contracts. In order to continually serve the state’s entrepreneurs, the NMSBDC is committed to growing our strategic alliances with our many partners statewide.