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U.S. Rep. John Carney/SBA Rehoboth Small Biz Tour Touts Small Biz Success, Urges Small Biz Disaster Prep

Tour Marks September as National Preparedness Month, Talking Small Biz Success and How to Sustain It, Even When Disaster Strikes
Release Date: 
Friday, September 26, 2014
Release Number: 
Jennifer Pilcher | 302-573-6294, ext. 222 |

WILMINGTON, DE – U.S. Rep. John Carney and SBA Delaware Director John Fleming conducted a small business tour/small business owner meet-and-greet in Rehoboth Beach, Del. on Thursday, September 25, 2014.  The tour lauded small business success while spotlighting resources to sustain it, even in the face of disaster.

“September is National Preparedness Month. We are proud of our small businesses’ success here in Delaware, and we want to remind entrepreneurs how important business continuity planning is to sustaining that success.  Each year small businesses nationwide are forced to close their doors in the aftermath of severe storms, flooding, tornadoes, wildfires and hurricanes.  Business interruptions, even if they last just a few hours, are costly in terms of lost productivity and profits. It is important for entrepreneurs to take charge of the well-being of their own companies, the safety of their employees, and the sustenance of their local economies by being prepared to rebound quickly from any kind of disaster.”

During the tour, Rep. Carney and SBA Delaware Director Fleming visited the following businesses:

Bramble & Brine

315 Rehoboth Avenue

Rehoboth Beach, DE 19971

Owners: Joe & Megan Churchman

Rehoboth Beach natives Joe and Megan Churchman will celebrate in October the one-year anniversary of this new addition to the Rehoboth restaurant scene.  The Churchmans guided a “behind-the-scenes” tour of their restaurant and kitchen and discussed how the SBDC can assist a new business like Bramble & Brine develop a business plan.  Bramble & Brine’s menu provides an alternative to boardwalk-style fast food.

Downtown Cowgirl

146 Rehoboth Avenue, #3

Rehoboth Beach, DE 19971

Owners: Jennifer White and Erin Kesselring

Longtime friends and Delaware beach locals White & Kesselring opened this award-winning boutique in 2005.  The shop is stocked with trendy to vintage modern dresses, quirky books, home decor and statement jewelry. Delaware Today named Downtown Cowgirl “2013 Boutique of the Year” and “2013 Best of Delaware Women’s Casual Clothing Boutique – Downstate.” The shop tour highlighted popular Fall fashion trends in Delaware. White and Kesselring discussed how the SBDC assists small businesses like Downtown Cowgirl develop a business plan and approach loan packaging.

Josephine’s Daughter

146 Rehoboth Ave., Suite 6

Rehoboth Beach, DE 19971

Owners: Deb Wilkins-Schiffer & Debbie Wilkins

Opened in 2009, this "wearable art" boutique features fashions, jewelry, and gifts, including one-of-a-kind pieces made by local and regional artists and fair-trade accessories from around the world. This shop tour highlighted works by Delaware-based artisans, as well as by an up-and-coming Hollywood designer whose designs have been worn by stars like Jennifer Lopez and Halle Berry. Wilkins-Schiffer and Wilkins discussed how the SBDC assists small businesses like Josephine’s Daughter develop a business plan and approach loan packaging.

Joining Rep. Carey and SBA Delaware Director Fleming on the small business tour were: John Banks, SBA Delaware Deputy Director; Bill Pfaff, Sussex County SBDC Director; Carrie Townsend, Program Coordinator, Delaware Business Resiliency Initiative, SBDC; Phyllis McCollum, Technical Assistance Coordinator, First State Community Loan Fund; Krys Johnson, Executive Director, Rehoboth Main Street; Carol Everhart, President and CEO, Rehoboth Beach-Dewey Beach Chamber of Commerce.