Senior Area Manager
Patrick Portrait

Location: Raleigh, NC

Office: North Carolina District Office

Position Summary: As a Senior Area Manager, I develop a work plan by analyzing local economic trends and conditions to establish goals and sets standards for program delivery in concert with district and Agency goals. In this role, the manager serves as a primary and critical point of contact for the Agency for the delivery of its financial assistance, management and technical assistance in an area separated from the district office. I represent the Agency as an advocate in all aspects of the finance, business development and minority enterprise development and am responsible for market development, outreach, and promotion. 

What brought you to SBA? While working as a congressional aide for a congresswoman, I was tasked to set up a series of small business roundtables with the congresswoman and local SBA staff. A few years later, after getting married, having a child, and returning from a deployment to Iraq, I wanted to transition to a position with more work/life balance.  Around this time in 2008, the Los Angeles SBA District Office posted a position, and I jumped on this chance to use my army journalist training and prior government experience to work with small businesses in the greater Los Angeles area.

What has been your “wow” moment at SBA? It happened in 2014 while I was standing in the Tom Bradley Room that overlooks downtown Los Angeles while celebrating 23 small businesses and advocates with the Mayor, the SBA District Director, and a room full of entrepreneurs, resource partners, community leaders, businesses owners and their families. As context, I proposed a renewed collaboration with the Mayor’s Office and their Department of Economic Development.  We worked collaboratively with Los Angeles Business Source Centers and SBA resource partners to kick off 2014 Small Business Week with this renewed partnership and event highlighting local entrepreneurs and their contributions to the community.

What keeps you at SBA? I’m very fortunate – both in California and now in North Carolina. I’m surrounded with highly-motivated and supportive co-workers. Plus, almost every single day I talk to or meet with people who are full of energy and ideas, and are creating a means to support themselves, their families, and community.  This is what the American Dream is all about and I have an opportunity to help make this happen! On a day-to-day basis, I endeavor to create value for these individuals and our lending partners in the territory I’m assigned by providing the best customer service I can. It’s this support and personal challenge that keeps me going.