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Southwest Region SBDC is SBA’s Minnesota 2019 Small Business Development Center of Excellence

Release Date: 
Thursday, April 25, 2019
Release Number: 
Sarah Swenty,

MINNEAPOLIS – The U.S. Small Business Administration has named the Southwest Region Small Business Development Center as the Minnesota 2019 SBDC of Excellence. 

"The Southwest Region SBDC demonstrates the value that SBA entrepreneurial development programs bring to communities and small businesses – particularly in rural areas,” explained Nancy Libersky, Minnesota’s SBA district director. “We’re thrilled to recognize its outstanding training and outreach efforts to educate and inform small businesses.”

In 2018, the Southwest Region SBDC assisted clients in accessing or investing more than $12 million and starting 22 new businesses. Led by Director Elizabeth Struve and seasoned business consultants Ruth Ann Karty, Pam Lehmann and Duane Hoversten, the center has long been a standout for the Minnesota SBDC network. Its production directly contributes to Minnesota being one of the top capital producing SBDCs of similar size in the entire country. 

“We are honored to be chosen for this award, said Struve. “The Southwest SBDC strives to promote economic opportunity and provide support for the small business concerns in our region. The recognition of our success is very much appreciated.”

The Southwest Region SBDC serves 18 counties in southwestern Minnesota and provides free and low-cost one-on-one consulting services, assisting clients ranging from startup entrepreneurs to fully established businesses making an impact in their local economies. By staying attuned to marketplace changes and providing expert, effective and practical assistance to the region, it continues its rich tradition of helping to meet the needs of the local small business community. The Southwest Region SBDC was founded in the mid 1970’s and is hosted by Southwest Minnesota State University in Marshall, Minn. It is funded in part by the SBA.

National Small Business Week is dedicated to honoring small business owners and their champions across the nation. It has been celebrated annually and proclaimed by each President for more than 50 years. Along with recognizing the hard working and deserving small business owners, the SBA also recognizes the lenders, resource partners, and spouses and families who provide support for small businesses.

The SBA Minnesota District Office, along with the SCORE Association and the Minnesota State Small Business Development Center, will honor all the 2019 Minnesota-based winners at the Minnesota Small Business Week Awards Luncheon on May 10, 2019, at the Minneapolis Marriott Northwest in Brooklyn Park, Minn. Registration is open for the event until May 7 at

For more information on Small Business Week, visit



About the U.S. Small Business Administration

The U.S. Small Business Administration makes the American dream of business ownership a reality. As the only go-to resource and voice for small businesses backed by the strength of the federal government, the SBA empowers entrepreneurs and small business owners with the resources and support they need to start, grow or expand their businesses, or recover from a declared disaster. It delivers services through an extensive network of SBA field offices and partnerships with public and private organizations. To learn more, visit