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SBA Small Business Award Nominations Open for 2017

Release Date: 
Thursday, September 15, 2016
Release Number: 
HDO 16-10
Advisory Date: 
Thursday, September 15, 2016
Advisory Number: 
HDO 16-10
Jane Sawyer, (808) 541-2990 x202

Hawaii – The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is now accepting nominations for the prestigious 2017 SBA Small Business Awards for the State of Hawaii.  The annual SBA program – honoring small businesses, exporters, entrepreneurs and advocates - continues to be the most competitive, comprehensive and visible awards presented to small businesses in the state and the nation.  

Recognizing excellence in small business since 1963, SBA Small Business Award winners have included outstanding owners and entrepreneurs such as Island Naturals Market, Big Island Candies, Maui Brewing, Old Lahaina Luau, Native Hawaiian Veterans, Koloa Rum Company, BaLe Sandwich & Bakery (now La Tour Bakehouse) and many other top performing companies.  Many of these business ventures have used SBA programs and services as they built firms in Hawaii. 

SBA’s Small Business Awards continue to generate interest and excitement across Hawaii with stories of innovation, creativity, and the positive steps that so many of our small business owners take to establish as successful businesses, create and keep jobs and build a better economy,” said Jane Sawyer, SBA District Director. “The program is a great source of inspiration and motivation so many in the early stages of business growth.”

For 2017 SBA Small Business Award categories for the Hawaii District include:

  • SBA’s Small Business Person of the Year honors the individual or ownership team who demonstrates outstanding skills, savvy and the ability to create success in the small business community.  Nominees will be evaluated based on increases in revenue year over year, staying power, job creation, innovativeness of product or service and response to adversity.
  • Entrepreneurial Success Award is unique in recognizing the achievements of an accomplished small business person who started out as a small business and has since, with some assistance from the SBA, grown to exceed the small business size standards, or NAICs.
  • Family-Owned Small Business of the Year honors the legacy of family owned and operated small businesses with a track record for more than 15 years and successfully passed some portion of ownership from one generation on to the next.
  • Small Business Exporter of the Year highlights a small business owner who is a leader in this fast growing market segment by exporting products or services outside the U.S. and supporting other export initiatives.
  • SBA Young Entrepreneur of the Year to recognize the achievement of  a younger small business owner who has embraced business ownership and demonstrates staying power and growth over a consecutive three year term prior to reaching the age of 35 years.
  • SBA Small Business Advocates of the Year to honor individuals who have provided exceptional assistance or services to small businesses through advocacy efforts to increase the awareness of the contributions of small businesses to economic vitality and create a better business environment.  These awards recognize champions in a variety of business disciplines and target areas include financial services, women in business, veteran owned small business support, specific business/industry sector, and minority small businesses.

Any individual or organization may submit a nomination for an SBA Small Business Award.  Self-nominations are also accepted.  Standard four-page nomination forms are used by the Hawaii SBA office to assure that candidates fulfill the criteria, are evaluated fairly and objectively, and to identify the strongest candidates to represent the top small businesses in Hawaii.  Previous SBA Award winners may be nominated in 2017 if a period of three years has lapsed since their award and the company continues to meet the eligibility requirements.

The required nomination forms with detailed information on the award categories are available on the by contacting the Hawaii District Office.  Completed forms should be submitted to the SBA District Office at 500 Ala Moana Boulevard, Suite 1-306, no later than November 10, 2016. 

For more information, call SBA at 808-541-2990 or email to .

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