Today, Commerce Secretary Gary Locke announced the appointment of 25 members to the new National Advisory Council for Minority Business Enterprises. The advisory council will be led by the Commerce Department’s Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) and provide advice and recommendations to the department and the administration on a broad range of policy issues affecting the minority business community.
The new council is the first to focus on promoting minority businesses since around 1969, when President Nixon established MBDA – formerly the Office of Minority Business Enterprise – and an advisory council to oversee and advise the new office.
The minority business community is an engine of economic growth and job creation. Today, there are approximately 5.8 million minority-owned firms generating $1 trillion annually and employing nearly 6 million workers. Yet, there continues to be challenges within the minority business community. Of those 5.8 million firms, only 800,000 have more than one employee and the gap in average annual revenue between minority-owned and non-minority-owned firms is significant.
Personal and Professional Excellence
Eric Dobyne - Regional Director
Mr. Dobyne is recognized for leading the creation of the Minority Investment Management Forum. The Forum resulted in increased investments for minority assets managers in both public and private sector retirements funds. This program directly resulted in nearly $1 billion in procurement transactions for minority-owned firms. Due to this success, the Minority Investment Management Forum will be duplicated and expanded to include brokers and other financial services companies.
Don Chapman with the Minority Business Development Agency discusses the panel review process for MBDA Business Center grant applications.
Cynthia Rios with the Minority Business Development Agency provides information on the steps an organization must take to register to apply for the MBDA Business Center grant.
Higher Maximum Loan Sizes Made Possible by Small Business Jobs ActHigher Maximum Loan Sizes Made Possible by Small Business Jobs
On the heels of completing final approvals of loans to nearly 2,000 firms that has been in its loan queue waiting for final approval of the Small Business Jobs Act, the U.S. Small Business Administration has finished implementation of another major element of the bill: increasing maximum sizes in several of its loan programs.
The changes – effective today – are permanent for general small business loans under SBA’s 7(a) guaranteed loan program, fixed asset loans through the 504 Certified Development Company program, Microloans, and International Trade, Export Working Capital and Export Express loans. A temporary increase for SBA Express loans is good for one year.