The Lower Rio Grande Valley District Office of the U.S. Small Business Administration is seeking “successful and inspiring entrepreneurs” to represent the district for the 2014 National Small Business Awards hosted by the SBA.
The top category each year is “Small Business Person of the Year.” The criteria used in choosing the winner each year includes “staying power,” which means the nominee has been in business at least three years, said Angela Burton, SBA deputy district director.
Other factors include rising sales and employee numbers over time; innovation in products and services; response to adversity and contributions to community-oriented projects, she said.
Whoever wins the Lower Valley Small Business Person of the Year will compete for Texas Business of the Year. Whoever wins state will go head-to-head with other contenders around the state for National Small Business Person of the Year.
“As a district we’ve had excellent nominations,” Burton said.
Nominations are being accepted for 11 other categories as well, including Small Business Exporter of the Year; SBA Young Entrepreneur of the Year; Environmental “Green” Conservator of the Year, Innovation-Through-Technology Business of the Year, Family-Owned Business of the Year, and Small Business Journalist of the Year.
Additional categories accepting nominations are Financial Services Champion of the Year, Home-Based Business Champion of the Year, Minority Small Business Champion of the Year, Veteran Small Business Champion of the Year, and Women in Business Champion of the Year.
Burton said any individual or organization dedicated to supporting the small business community can submit nominations, including trade and professional associations, business organizations and chambers of commerce. The deadline for nominations is Jan. 17.
The winners will be recognized during National Small Business Week, which will take place May 12-16, Burton said.
“Some of past our winners started with nothing more than a dream and a strong desire to succeed,” she said.
For more information or to obtain a nomination packet contact Veronica Ortega at 956-427-8533 ext. 233, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.