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Nominate a Small Business for the 2015 SBA Awards

Kentucky District Office Awards
Release Date: 
Friday, October 10, 2014
Release Number: 
15-1010KY
Advisory Date: 
Friday, October 10, 2014
Contact: 
michael.ashcraft@sba.gov

2015 Kentucky District Office Small Business & Advocacy Awards

In recognition of the small business community’s contribution to the American economy and society, the President of the United States designates one week each year as National Small Business Week. The national celebration will take place in the spring of 2015 in Washington, DC.

Prior to National Small Business Week 2015, the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Kentucky District Office, in conjunction with the Kentucky Small Business Development Center, will have a special event to honor and present awards to local entrepreneurs and those who support and advocate on behalf of small businesses.

For the 2015 National Small Business Week, the SBA Kentucky District Office will award the following*:

SBA Kentucky Small Business Person of the Year

SBA Kentucky Business Exporter of the Year

KY Financial Services Advocate of the Year**

KY Home-Based Business Advocate of the Year**

KY Minority Small Business Advocate of the Year**

KY Veteran Small Business Advocate of the Year**

KY Woman Small Business Advocate of the Year**

KY Young Entrepreneur of the Year**

*Phoenix Awards for Disaster Recovery, Federal Procurement Awards, Resource Partner Awards or Small Business Investment Company of the Year Awards should be submitted to http://awards.sba.gov/, or go to that website to obtain the mailing address for each specific award.

**Advocate of the Year and Young Entrepreneur of the Year Awards are state level (Kentucky) only.

The nomination and selection process, evaluation criteria, and key dates for the SBA Small Business Week Awards program are set forth in the guidelines below. The Agency reserves the right, in its sole reasonable discretion, to remove a nominee from the selection process.

What are the key deadlines for nominations?

January 5, 2015 at 3:00 pm ET: Small Business Week Award nominations must be received through the online nomination portal, http://awards.sba.gov/, or postmarked or delivered to the Kentucky District Office listed below. Please note the acceptable methods for submission for each award category listed.

April 2015: Kentucky Small Business Award Winners will be announced.

Who is eligible to be nominated for these awards?

To be nominated and receive one of these awards, the nominee must fit within the category of the award.  Each award has specific information to be included in the nomination package and evaluation/selection criteria. All Kentucky nominees must also be residents of and located in Kentucky and will be subject to background checks. Small businesses owned and operated by nominees must comply with federal civil rights laws. Elected officials are not eligible. Contact Michael Ashcraft, SBA Kentucky District Office, at 502-582-5971, extension 225 or send questions to michael.ashcraft@sba.gov.

Where are the nominations to be sent?

Nominations may be submitted in the following ways:

1) Kentucky Small Business Person of the Year and Kentucky Business Exporter of the Year may be submitted electronically via the online nominations portal at http://awards.sba.gov/.

  • The Phoenix Awards for Disaster Recovery, Federal Procurement, Resource Partner or Small Business Investment Company of the Year Awards packages must be submitted electronically via the online nomination portal at http://awards.sba.gov/.

2) Completed paper nominations for Kentucky Small Business Person of the Year, Kentucky Business Exporter of the Year and the Kentucky Advocacy Awards listed below may be mailed or hand delivered to the SBA Kentucky District Office at:

SBA Kentucky District Office

Attn: Small Business Awards Committee

600 Dr. M.L. King, Jr. Place, Room 188

Louisville, KY40202

3) Kentucky Small Business Person of the Year, Kentucky Business Exporter of the Year and the Kentucky Advocacy Awards may also be submitted by email to michael.ashcraft@sba.gov.

Note: Nomination package must not exceed 5 MB or it will be rejected by the SBA email server. If award nomination package exceeds 5 MB, please submit nomination in separate, corresponding and identifiable email packages. Otherwise, please submit a paper nomination.

Who may submit nominations for these awards?

Any individual or organization dedicated to the support of the small business community in the United States, including, but not limited to, trade and professional associations and business organizations, may submit nominations. Individuals may not be nominated for more than one 2015 Small Business Week Award category.

May I self-nominate for these awards?

Yes, individuals may self-nominate for any award.

What are the selection procedures for these awards?

Small Business Person of the Year and Exporter of the Year Awards will be selected at the state and national levels. Kentucky Advocacy Awards will be selected at the state level only. Awards at each level will be selected by a panel of judges that may be comprised of both SBA employees and non-Federal employees. Nomination packages for each state winner, except for Kentucky Advocacy Awards, will be sent to the appropriate regional SBA office and prepared for transmittal to the SBA’s Office of Communications and Public Liaison for review. The National Small Business Person of the Year and National Small Business Exporter of the Year will be selected by the SBA Administrator, based on the recommendations of the panel of judges at the regional and national levels. The national winners will be announced during National Small Business Week. Non-federal employees serving as judges must sign a conflict of interest/non-disclosure certification.

What information must the nomination package contain?

Nominations submitted via the online nomination portal at http://awards.sba.gov/ must be typewritten and contain the information required below. All evaluation/selection criteria must be specifically addressed. Incomplete nomination packages will not be considered.

Nominations submitted directly to the SBA district office in the state or territory where the nominee is located must be typewritten on one side of 8½” x 11” white stationery, collated and secured in a 1½” binder and contain the information required below. Incomplete nomination packages will not be considered.

SBA Kentucky Small Business Person of the Year

Any individual who owns and operates or who bears principal responsibility for operating a small business may be nominated for Small Business Person of the Year. Partners who jointly own and operate a small business may be nominated as a “team,” so long as the number of individuals in the team nomination does not exceed four.

All nominees for the Small Business Person of the Year must own or operate a business defined as “small,” for its primary industry under the applicable SBA size standards. Individuals who have received the SBA’s Small Business Person of the Year Award at the state level within the past five years are not eligible. While receipt of SBA assistance is not required, it is preferred. Refer to the nomination information below for details.

What information must the nomination package contain?

  1. A completed background form (SBA Form 3300, Award Nomination Form), which is also available through SBA district offices and online nomination portal, http://awards.sba.gov.  For “team” nominations for Small Business Person of the Year, a background form is required for each team member, so long as the number of individuals in the team nomination does not exceed four.
  2. A nomination letter, to include a concise statement of the qualities and performance that merit the award, not to exceed one page. The nominee’s name, title, place of business, business address, telephone number and e-mail address must be included. Contact information for the nominator should also be included, if different than the nominee.
  3. A biography of the nominee, not to exceed one page. For “team” nominations, a biography is required for each team member.
  4. A business profile that includes a description of the nominee’s business and information to support the evaluation/selection criteria listed below. The nominator is encouraged to copy and paste the evaluation/selection criteria and provide supporting information directly under each topic.
  5. The nominee’s financial statements, including balance sheets, profit-and-loss statements and cash flow statements, on 8½’’ x 11’’ paper, for the calendar years 2011, 2012 and 2013. This information will be kept confidential.
  6. Additional supporting documentation deemed significant by the nominator, including news clips, letters of recommendation and other evidence of the appropriateness of the nomination. Supporting documentation must not exceed 10 pages. Videos will not be considered.
  7. An original 8” x 10” or 5” x 7” photo of the nominee; or a digital photo – at least 300 dpi; photocopies are not acceptable.  For “team” nominations, a photo is required for each team member.

What are the evaluation/selection criteria for the Small Business Person of the Year award?

In evaluating the nomination packages, the judges will look at the following criteria:

A) Staying power — a substantiated history as an established business; including:

  • Number of years in business; minimum of three years.
  • Sustained expansion, addition of territories, growth in square footage occupied.
  • Steady growth in net worth as evidenced by total assets less total liabilities on calendar year end annual balance sheets for 2011, 2012 and 2013.

B) Growth in number of employees — a benchmark to judge the impact of the business on the job market.

  • Sustained over a minimum of three years.
  • Increase over the three years must be in excess of growth in Gross National Product.

C) Increase in sales and/or unit volume — an indication of continued growth over the last three years.

  • Consistent growth in net income as evidenced by fiscal year annual profit-and-loss statements for calendar years 2011, 2012 and 2013.

D) Current and past financial performance — financial reports substantiate an improved financial position of the business.

  • Profit-and-loss statements for calendar years 2011, 2012 and 2013, reflecting sustained upward growth.
  • Balance sheets for calendar years 2011, 2012 and 2013, showing consistent increase in net worth and/or partners’ return.

E) Innovativeness of product or service offered — an illustration of the creativity and imagination of the nominee.

  • Specific description of uniqueness of product or service.
  • Explanation of how product or service fits a niche not being adequately addressed by the competition.

F) Response to adversity — examples of problems faced in the nominee’s business and the methods used to solve them, including:

  • Specific description of financial, physical, legal or other crisis.
  • Substantiation of the threat to the continuity of the business.
  • Defined actions taken by the nominee to resolve the crisis.

G) Contributions to community-oriented projects — evidence of the use of his/her personal time and resources, including:

  • Listing of specific contributions of money, time, or resources to charitable causes.
  • Membership in councils, boards and clubs providing support and services to the community.

H) If applicable, a description of the products exported and markets served.

SBA Kentucky Small Business Exporter of the Year

All nominees for the Small Business Exporter of the Year must own or operate a business defined as “small,” for its primary industry under the applicable SBA size standards, and is engaged in exporting may be nominated. Individuals who have received the SBA’s Small Business Exporter of the Year Award at the state level within the past five years are not eligible. While receipt of SBA assistance is not required, it is preferred. Refer to the nomination information below for details.

What information must the nomination package contain?

  1. A completed background form (SBA Form 3300, Award Nomination Form), which is also available through SBA district offices and online nomination portal at http://awards.sba.gov.  For “team” nominations for Small Business Person of the Year, a background form is required for each team member, so long as the number of individuals in the team nomination does not exceed four.
  2. A nomination letter, to include a concise statement of the qualities and performance that merit the award, not to exceed one page. The nominee’s name, title, place of business, business address, telephone number and e-mail address must be included. Contact information for the nominator should also be included, if different than the nominee.
  3. A biography of the nominee, not to exceed one page. For “team” nominations, a biography is required for each team member.
  4. A business profile that includes a description of the nominee’s business and information to support the evaluation/selection criteria listed below. The nominator is encouraged to copy and paste the evaluation/selection criteria and provide supporting information directly under each topic.
  5. The nominee’s financial statement, including balance sheets, profit-and-loss statements and cash flow statements, on 8½’’ x 11’’ paper, for the calendar years 2011, 2012 and 2013. This information will be kept confidential.
  6. Additional supporting documentation deemed significant by the nominator, including news clips, letters of recommendation and other evidence of the appropriateness of the nomination. Supporting documentation must not exceed 10 pages. Videos will not be considered.
  7. An original 8” x 10” or 5” x 7” photo of the nominee; or a digital photo – at least 300 dpi; photocopies are not acceptable.  For “team” nominations, a photo is required for each team member.

What are the evaluation/selection criteria for the Small Business Exporter of the Year?

In evaluating the nomination packages for the Exporter of the Year award, the judges will look at the following criteria:

A) Increased sales, profits and/or growth of employment because of exporting.

B) Creative overseas marketing strategies.

C) Effective solutions to export-related problems.

D) Demonstrated encouragement of other small businesses to export.

E) Volunteer assistance to other small businesses entering the export market.

F) Cooperation with other businesses in the creation of export trading companies and/or introduction of unique trading relationships, products or services.

Kentucky Advocate and Young Entrepreneur of the Year Awards

Nominees for the Kentucky Small Business Advocate and Young Entrepreneur of the Year Awards should either own or operate a business defined as “small,” for its primary industry under the applicable SBA size standards or serve small businesses in a significant manner, as indicated by the award parameters listed below. Individuals who have received a Kentucky Small Business Advocate or Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award within the past five years are not eligible for that same award. Refer to the nomination information below for details.

What information must each Kentucky Advocate or Young Entrepreneur of the Year nomination package contain?

For the Kentucky Financial Services, Home-Based, Minority, Veteran and Woman Small Business Advocate of the Year and Young Entrepreneur of the Year Awards listed below, the following information should be included in each nomination package. All evaluation/selection criteria must be specifically addressed. A complete nomination package will also include, in the following order:

  1. A completed background form (SBA Form 3300, Award Nomination Form), which is also available through SBA district offices and online nomination portal at http://awards.sba.gov.  For “team” nominations for Small Business Person of the Year, a background form is required for each team member, so long as the number of individuals in the team nomination does not exceed four.
  2. A nomination letter, to include a concise statement of the qualities and performance that merit the award, not to exceed one page. The nominee’s name, title, place of business, business address, telephone number and e-mail address must be included. Contact information for the nominator should also be included, if different than the nominee.
  3. A biography of the nominee, not to exceed one page. For “team” nominations, a biography is required for each team member.
  4. A business profile that includes a description of the nominee’s business and information to support the evaluation/selection criteria listed below. The nominator is encouraged to copy and paste the evaluation/selection criteria and provide supporting information directly under each topic.
  5. The nominee’s financial statement, including balance sheets, profit-and-loss statements and cash flow statements, on 8½’’ x 11’’ paper, for the calendar years 2011, 2012 and 2013, if a for-profit small business. This information will be kept confidential.
  6. Additional supporting documentation deemed significant by the nominator, including news clips, letters of recommendation and other evidence of the appropriateness of the nomination. Supporting documentation must not exceed 10 pages. Videos will not be considered.
  7. An original 8” x 10” or 5” x 7” photo of the nominee; or a digital photo – at least 300 dpi; photocopies are not acceptable.  For “team” nominations, a photo is required for each team member.

KY Financial Services Advocate of the Year

Who is eligible to be nominated?

An individual who assists small businesses through advocacy efforts to increase the usefulness and availability of accounting or financial services for small businesses may be nominated. Nominees may or may not be small business owners.

What are the evaluation/selection criteria for the KY Financial Services Advocate of the Year?

A) Outside of regular business duties, the amount and quality of assistance given small businesses to obtain financing.

B) Advocacy for changes in the financial services industry to assist small companies.

C) Encouragement of the flow of investment capital to small ventures.

D) Active support for legislative or regulatory action designed to help small firms.

E) Measurable accomplishments through the advocacy efforts of the financial services or accountingindustries to advance small business interests.

KY Home-Based Advocate of the Year

Who is eligible to be nominated?

An individual who has experienced the rewards and difficulties of owning a home-based business and has volunteered to improve the climate for home-based businesses may be nominated. Nominees may or may not be small business owners.

What are the evaluation/selection criteria for the KY Home-Based Advocate of the Year?

A) Volunteer efforts to improve the conditions for home-based businesses.

B) Entrepreneurial training, policy development efforts, or financial or business planning specifically tailored for home-based businesses.

C) Demonstrated interest in home-based businesses by an owner or former owner.

D) Measurable accomplishments in advancing home-based businesses, such as adoption of public policy or expansion of a program.

KY Minority Small Business Advocate of the Year

Who is eligible to be nominated?

An individual who has fulfilled a commitment to the advancement of small business opportunities for minority business owners may be nominated. Nominees may or may not be small business owners.

What are the evaluation/selection criteria for the KY Minority Small Business Advocate of the Year?

A) Volunteer efforts beyond business/professional responsibilities to advance minority small business interests within the community, state and/or nation.

B) Demonstrated efforts to improve conditions in the minority small business community as a whole, not solely for individual personal advancement.

C) Volunteer efforts to provide professional services to the minority small business community in a legal, legislative, managerial or financial capacity.

D) Demonstrated accomplishments in advising minority small business groups of opportunities within the overall business community.

E) Other accomplishments demonstrating the nominee’s merit as an effective advocate for minority small business interests.

KY Veteran Small Business Advocate of the Year

Who is eligible to be nominated?

An individual who has fulfilled a commitment to the advancement of small business opportunities for veterans of the U.S. armed forces may be nominated. Nominees may or may not be veterans.

What are the evaluation/selection criteria for the KY Veteran Small Business Advocate of the Year?

A) Active support for legislative or regulatory action designed to help small businesses.

B) Evidence of increased business opportunities for veterans as a result of the nominee’s actions.

C) Advisory activities to improve awareness of small business opportunities among veterans’ groups.

D) Advocacy of special consideration for veteran-owned small businesses in government policymaking.

E) Demonstrated success in obtaining support within the community for the establishment of veteran-owned small businesses.

F) Other accomplishments demonstrating the nominee’s effective advocacy of veteran-owned small  businesses.

KY Woman Small Business Advocate of the Year

Who is eligible to be nominated?

An individual who has fulfilled a commitment to the advancement of women’s business ownership may be nominated. Nominees may or may not be small business owners.

What are the evaluation/selection criteria for the KY Woman Small Business Advocate of the Year?

A) Active support for legislative or regulatory action designed to help small businesses.

B) Efforts to increase business and financial opportunities for women.

C) Legal, financial or managerial assistance provided to enhance women’s business ownership.

D) Voluntary efforts to strengthen the role of women business owners within the community.

E) Advocacy of the women-owned business community as a whole, not solely for individual personal advancement.

F) Other accomplishments demonstrating effectiveness in improving the environment for the creation and expansion of businesses owned and operated by women.

KY Young Entrepreneur of the Year

Who is eligible to be nominated?

To be considered a young entrepreneur, the individual must serve as a majority owner and operate or bear principal responsibility for operating a small business with at least a three year track record, and who will not have reached the age of 30 by April 1, 2015.

What are the evaluation/selection criteria for the KY Young Entrepreneur of the Year?

A) Evidence of success as measured by sales and profits, as indicated by the business balance sheets, profit-and-loss statements and cash flow statements for the calendar years 2011, 2012 and 2013.

B) Increased employment opportunities created by the nominee’s business.

C) Development and/or utilization of innovative or creative business methods.

D) Demonstrated entrepreneurial potential necessary for long-term business success and economic growth.