UW-Green Bay Small Business Development Center recognized
Via SBA News Release:
The U.S. Small Business Administration’s Wisconsin office has named seven small businesses and four organizations as Wisconsin’s 2022 SBA National Small Business Week award winners. For more than 51 years, the President of the United States has issued a proclamation announcing National Small Business Week, which recognizes the critical contributions of America’s entrepreneurs and small business owners. More than half of Americans either own or work for a small business, and they create about two out of every three new jobs in the U.S. and in Wisconsin each year. As part of National Small Business Week, the U.S. Small Business Administration takes the opportunity to highlight the impact of outstanding entrepreneurs, small business owners, and others from all 50 states and U.S. territories. Here in Wisconsin, SBA winners are highlighted at the virtual Lt. Governor’s Conference on Small Business Development taking place May 3-6.
Wisconsin’s SBA District Director Eric Ness congratulated all of the winners, saying, “ These entrepreneurs and organizations work hard every day and show up with excellence for their employees, their customers, and Wisconsin’s communities both large and small. It’s a pleasure to recognize them and share their stories to inspire other business owners during National Small Business Week. Many used SBA resources to sustain themselves during the pandemic or to support their growth before or after. We’d like to engage all Wisconsin small businesses with SBA programs to help their businesses start, grow, expand, and recover from adversity, and to enable them to build wealth through entrepreneurship.”
Tara Carr, center director for the Small Business Development Center at UW-Green Bay, will receive the SBA Wisconsin SBDC Excellence and Innovation Center Award. As center director for the SBDC at UW-Green Bay, Tara Carr has overseen several key initiatives that have expanded the SBDC’s ability to serve small businesses both locally and throughout Wisconsin. At the onset of the pandemic, the SBDC used CARES Act funding to employ three temporary positions for eight weeks to deal with the onslaught of support needed. They also assisted the SBDC at UW-River Falls with procedures necessary to utilize additional non-SBDC staff to meet client demands during the pandemic response. A collaboration with Sheboygan Economic Development Corporation was revised to jointly fund a consulting position. Staff also trained SBDCs at UW-Milwaukee and UW-River Falls on creating data-based client strategies. In addition, the center developed and facilitated content for a five-month, weekly high school entrepreneurial program in Door County. Internally, for the first time in 40 years, the SBDC office was relocated on campus into the Cofrin School of Business, and there has been no staff turnover since 2016. All center consulting staff are certified as Food Finance Institute consultants. These efforts contributed to a total of 1,376 businesses that the center consulted with in 2020 and connected businesses to $23 million in SBA-related capital between 2019 and 2021. Tara Carr also serves on several SBDC committees: Professional Development & Employee Engagement, and Entrepreneurial Training Program.