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SBA Richmond District Office to present three awards to Chesapeake entities

Release Date: 
Tuesday, May 27, 2014
Release Number: 
Advisory Date: 
Tuesday, May 27, 2014
Advisory Number: 
Matthew Nowak | matthew.nowak@sba.gov | 804-307-1458

SBA Richmond District Office to present three awards to Chesapeake entities


RICHMOND, Va. - The U. S. Small Business Administration’s Richmond District Office presents three of its awards this year within the City of Chesapeake including the coveted Community of the Year Award. Continuing the pattern of award-winners from the Chesapeake area is Angela Barber, Chesapeake’s Economic Development and SWAM Coordinator, honored as the Women in Business Champion of the Year. Sub-Contractor of the Year award goes to Aviation Management Analytical Consultants LLC, an innovative leader operating in Chesapeake. These awards and more will be presented at the “Heart of a Champion” awards banquet June 13 in Richmond.


"The City of Chesapeake has created a favorable small business environment that not only directly impacts their own city but also positively affects the surrounding business communities,” said SBA Richmond District Office Acting District Director Jacqueline West. “Having the Community of the Year, Women in Business Champion of the Year and Sub-Contractor of the Year from one location shows how committed Chesapeake is to creating a place where small businesses can be successful.”


The award recognizes a community in the SBA Richmond District Office territory that demonstrates a small business friendly environment for start-up and expanding small businesses. Cities, towns, counties and planning districts are evaluated based on key programs and incentives to attract and retain small businesses; a successful small business that they supported with the programs and incentives; and the leveraging of their economic development resources with other federal, state and local resources to benefit local small businesses.


Many factors contributed to Chesapeake’s recognition as the Community of the Year. Its outreach program to match small, minority-owned, women-owned and veteran-owned businesses with industry partners from the public and private sectors has been very successful. Chesapeake has instituted the Formalized Business Retention Program that promotes the interests and growth of small businesses with less than 50 employees. Economic Development Grants are given based on job creation, wages and company investment. The program is available to qualifying companies seeking either to locate a new facility to Chesapeake or to expand an existing operation within the City. 


“From the beginning, I’ve said small businesses and the entrepreneurs that grow them would be at the heart of our city’s success story, and this proves it,” said Mayor Alan P. Krasnoff.  “Chesapeake is on a roll, and we have Angela Barber to thank for helping make that possible."


Chesapeake has many upcoming small business initiatives. The Ready, Set, Grow Program is targeted for start-ups and to grow small businesses. This new initiative will be powered by the GrowthWheel Program due to launch this July. As part of the program a Certified Business Advisor will be on staff to assist start-up and growth companies using visual tools to help make decisions, set agendas and focus efforts. Each CBA session will be tailored to fit the specific needs of the business. The CBA will  prepare the business for each stage of growth helping them to understand new business perspectives and work through all development areas of the business that need special attention.


Angela Barber, named SBA’s Woman in Business Champion of the Year, is Chesapeake’s Economic Development and SWAM Coordinator. Barber is recognized for her tireless efforts in providing access to vital resources for women who are starting and growing their businesses. Her record of assistance to women in business is evidence of Chesapeake’s strong commitment in promoting women-owned small businesses.


The Women in Business Champion of the Year is selected based on their efforts to increase business and financial opportunities for women. In addition, nominees must be involved in supporting the advocacy of the women-owned business community as a whole, support for legislative or regulatory action designed to help small businesses and have voluntary efforts to strengthen the role of women business owners within the community.


“Winning the Women in Business Champion Award has generated a collective sense of pride, not only for me, but for my staff and the City of Chesapeake,” said Chesapeake’s Economic Development SWAM coordinator, Angela Barber. “It is a reflection of the dedication and support we extend to our women-owned businesses and to the business community as a whole. Although I am grateful for the recognition. I am more so for the opportunity to serve and for those who have supported me in this effort.”


A result of Barber’s efforts Chesapeake now has over 200 WOSBs with revenues ranging from $500,000 to over $20 million annually. She has helped create the Advancing Women in Business Series to recognize contributions from women-owned small businesses that contribute greatly to Chesapeake’s growing economy.


The Advancing Women in Business Series program focuses not only on WOSB’s in Chesapeake, but has spread to provide referral services across Hampton Roads. Chesapeake has been very active with partner organizations that help promote small business. They have formed partnerships with Norfolk State University’s Women’s Economic Development Center, Old Dominion University’s Women’s Business Center and with the SBA for its financing and advising resources. Additionally, they have partnered with WPEO/WBENC to become an advocate for corporate/commercial certification and are member/partners with organizations such as NAWBO, WID, WIPP and CREW that promote and support WOSB’s.


Additionally, Chesapeake’s Aviation Management Analytical Consultants LLC will be recognized as the Sub-Contractor of the Year. AVMAC is a service-disabled veteran-owned small business founded by retired Navy Commander Roberto Ortiz. It specializes in management consulting, technical and logistical support services and process improvement services that support the federal government. AVMAC is currently in the SBA’s 8(a) Business Development Program that helps small, disadvantaged businesses compete in government contracting. Since its founding in 2011, AVMAC has doubled the amount of employees while its revenue has increased every year.


"Being recognized by the U.S. Small Business Administration is truly a great honor that acknowledges the exceptional hard work that goes into establishing and developing a small business in today's environment,” said AVMAC’s President and CEO, Roberto Ortiz. “Our success can be directly attributed to the many mentors and business associates that have placed their trust in our business ethos and quality, seeing first hand our commitment to excellence which has allowed us to flourish in the government contracting marketplace.”


The Sub-Contractor of the Year is based on criteria that include: the overall qualifications and expertise of management, customer support, exceptional results and achievements, cost performance, sales increase and innovativeness of products.


Each winner will be honored during the “Heart of a Champion” Small Business Awards luncheon scheduled for June 13 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Richmond Omni Hotel. The public is invited to join in this annual celebration of Small Businesses. Details about the event can be found at www.sbwva.org/support-the-event/.


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