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SBA Selects Erika Eckstrom as SBA Young Entrepreneur of the Year

Release Date: 
Friday, May 2, 2014
Release Number: 
Advisory Date: 
Friday, May 16, 2014
Advisory Number: 
Cathy Pokines 315-471-9393 ext. 241

Southern Tier Company Recognized For Small Business Success

SYRACUSE, N.Y. – The U.S. Small Business Administration Syracuse District Office has selected Erika Eckstrom, owner of Painted Bar Stables in Burdett, N.Y., as the winner of the 2014 SBA Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award.  Nominated by Corning Federal Credit Union, 29-year-old Eckstrom was chosen for the award based on her Southern Tier company’s increase in sales and profits and her demonstrated long-term potential as a successful business owner.

When Erika Eckstrom was just five years old, she knew she wanted to spend her life working with horses. She bought her first horse at 13 and then adopted and rehabilitated rescue horses throughout high school. After completing two bachelor’s degrees and a master’s degree in Washington, D.C., Eckstrom returned to the Southern Tier to pursue her childhood dream of owning her own stable.

In 2008, 23-year-old Eckstrom purchased Painted Bar Stables, a 22-acre horse property outside Watkins Glen, NY. Eckstrom renovated the barns and business model to provide a range of programs for individuals to develop horsemanship with trail riding adventures, lessons, seminars, boarding and even specialized, hands on breeding programs. Her skill with people and horses has grown the business 31 percent over the past three years and led to the addition of two new employees.

The stable’s picturesque location on the Seneca Lake Wine Trail and adjacent to the Finger Lakes National Forest offers Eckstrom’s trail riders breathtaking views from the saddle. Painted Bar clientele can enjoy more trails to ride and adventures with Eckstrom’s purchase of 95 acres of land in 2012 using an SBA-backed loan from Corning Federal Credit Union.

Eckstrom will receive the Syracuse District award at SBA’s annual awards luncheon on May 5 at The Doubletree Hotel in East Syracuse.
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