SBA Graduates First Emerging Leaders Class in Charlotte

Entrepreneurial Training Initiative puts Small Business Owners through the Paces

Release Date:

Wednesday, November 4, 2015


Mike Ernandes 704-344-6588

Internet Address:

SBA North Carolina District Office

Charlotte, NC – For 16 Charlotte area small business owners, who were selected to participate in the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Emerging Leaders program in April, the hard part is over.

After spending eight months and logging in a combination of 100 hours of work and evening class time, the North Carolina SBA is graduating its first class of Emerging Leaders.  In February of this year, Charlotte was one of four new cities to have been chosen to participate in the agency’s 2015 Emerging Leaders initiative, an intensive executive-level entrepreneurship training program for small business owners in 48 cities and communities across the country.

“We couldn’t be happier with the results of our inaugural Emerging Leaders class,” said SBA North Carolina District Director Lynn Douthett, who delivered remarks at a graduation ceremony on Tuesday evening at Central Piedmont Community College where the program took place.  “The caliber of each individual was evident through their commitment and willingness to improve their businesses.  If we made them step outside their comfort zones and take a look at different business principles from another angle, then we did our job.”

According to SBA’s North Carolina Program Manager of Emerging Leaders Eileen Joyce, participants had to have annual revenues of at least $400,000; have been in business for at least 3 years; and have at least one employee, other than self in order to participate in the program.

The 16 graduates, who participated in the program, came from Charlotte, Matthews, Concord, Monroe, and Fort Mill, SC.

“Program graduates came from all points of the Charlotte metropolitan area and have shown tremendous discipline to be present, both physically and mentally, along this journey,” said G.Sean Williams, CPSM, Charlotte Emerging Leader instructor. “Providing an environment conducive to foundation building, transparency, and success comes easy when you have been given a group of inaugural Emerging Leaders this great!”

Completing its eighth year nationally, the Emerging Leaders initiative has trained nearly 3,000 promising small business owners in underserved communities, and continues to expand its impact of helping small businesses grow and create jobs.

Local partners for Charlotte Emerging Leaders include Central Piedmont Community College, The Charlotte Chamber of commerce, Charlotte SCORE, Charlotte Mecklenburg Black Chamber, the City of Charlotte Business INClusion, Mecklenburg county MWSBE Program, NC Small Business & Technology Development Center, NC Institute of Minority Economic Development, and the Latin American Economic Development Corporation.

For additional information about the Emerging Leaders program, contact Eileen Joyce of the SBA North Carolina District Office at (704) 344-6588 or by e-mail at sends e-mail).

RevTech Labs/QC Fintech – Charlotte
First Flight Venture Center – RTP

The following is a list of the executives and their companies who have graduated from the SBA’s 2015 Emerging Leaders training initiative:

William Bailey
Rapier Solutions

Gilberto Bergman
Bergman Brothers Staffing, Inc.

Donald Colson
VIP Courier Express, LLC

Brad DeMarco
Dynamic Design Solutions, Inc.
Fort Mill

Kristin Dodd
Carolina Pest Management

Camisha Farris
Anointed Flooring, Inc.

Julie Glenn
Echols, Purser & Glenn, PLLC

Benjamin Knight

Clifford McClain
Construction Concepts and Design Inc.

David McClure
McClure CPA PA

Mario Mendigana
Elite Touch Cleaning Services, Inc.

Tamara Neely
HomeCare for the Carolinas LLC

Phillip Nordan
Treehouse Vineyards

Gregory Pope
Gregory Sylvia, LLC

Tim Songer
Interactive Knowledge, Inc.

Jason Torres
National Drug Source

Source: Mike Ernandes

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