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Speeches

The SBA Administrator

MARIA CONTRERAS-SWEET

Entrepreneurial Equality: New Tools for a More Inclusive SBA

 

Thank you, Neera, for that kind introduction and to the entire team at the Center for American Progress for hosting us today.

I recently received a call that would change my life and move my husband and me across the country. Two months ago, President Obama tasked me with three objectives: run an effective SBA, be a strong voice for America's small businesses, and take the agency to the next level. I embraced this exciting and worthy mission, knowing small businesses are the backbone of our economy.

Keynote Address for the National Association of Guaranteed Government Lenders Annual Meeting

 

Thank you, Tony, for that generous introduction.  And thank you to Lynn Ozer, the Board of Directors, and the hard-working NAGGL staff for planning this conference.  I especially want to thank whoever had the idea to meet here in sunny Florida. As Tony mentioned, before I came to SBA, I was a business banker in Los Angeles. There were a lot of April showers in my first month in Washington, so it’s nice to be back in the sunshine talking to my fellow bankers. It feels a little like home – only, less traffic.

Keynote Address to the National Association of Development Companies Annual Meeting

 

Thank you, Sally, for that generous introduction. I’d also like to thank Beth Solomon; the board of directors; and the incredible NADCO staff for your hard work in planning this conference. I’m delighted to be with you here in Colorado Springs.  I feel like I’m among kindred spirits.

I know you’re here because you have a passion for the kind of economic development work that can transform communities. You’re mission-based lenders, and I want to be your champion in Washington because I’m one of you.

Opportunities for Women in Federal Contracting

 

Thank you for that generous introduction. And thanks to all of you for being here. This is a very special day for me. Two and a half weeks ago, Vice President Biden swore me in as the 24th SBA Administrator. President Obama even stopped by my swearing-in to welcome me and talk about the importance of small businesses to our economy.

SBA Administrator Swearing-In Ceremony

 

Thank you, Mr. Vice President, for those kind words. I also want to thank the President for his confidence and for giving me this opportunity to be an advocate for America’s 28 million small businesses. And I want to thank the members of Senate for their vote of confidence.  I look forward to working with all of the members of Congress.

SBIR Road Tour Kickoff

Good afternoon, Kentucky innovators. Thank you, John, for that introduction and for your leadership on innovation and technology issues at SBA. I also want to acknowledge SBA’s district director here, Ralph Ross, and his team for their work to support local businesses across the state. And a special thanks to our tremendous state partner, Mahendra Jain of KSTC, for organizing this event and bringing our innovators together.

SEO Alternative Investment Conference

Thank you, Yokasta, for that generous introduction, and I also want to acknowledge President Goodloe and Chairman Kravis for their leadership.

I think it speaks volumes about SEO that you are led exclusively by your alumni. Seven thousand internships to deserving young people who just needed that first foot in the door… It’s hard to imagine Wall Street today without the SEO – without the talented analysts, fellows, and leaders were recruited and mentored by this organization. No organization has done more to promote diversity on Wall Street. No one.

Global Entrepreneurship Congress

Thank you, Ambassador Phillips, and good morning, Milan. Grazie to our Italian hosts, Minster Renzi, Minister Guidi, and Mayor Pisapia for making this Congress such an inviting and memorable occasion. And mille grazie – thank you so much – to the Kauffman Foundation, the Global Entrepreneurship Network, and the META Group for bringing us all together.

National Congress of American Indians Executive Council Winter Legislative Summit

Good afternoon and thank you for that wonderful welcome. Let me begin by thanking Vice President Noka for that generous introduction. It’s truly an honor to have this opportunity to be with you today and to address so many distinguished tribal leaders.

In December, President Cladoosby and I were together at the Tribal Nations Summit for a discussion about economic development in Indian country. We had a candid dialogue about the challenges that still lie ahead, and I said we were going to step up our game at the SBA to help you meet those challenges.

White House Summit on Cybersecurity and Consumer Protection

Good afternoon, everyone.

It’s great to be back home in California.

Let me start by thanking John Holdren, for his incredible work leading the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy.

John: I know cyber threats can be a little scary, but it was it your idea to hold this summit on Friday the 13th?

Nice touch….

Has everyone seen the Friday the 13th movies?

Ever notice that when you wander off from the group, things don’t usually end well.

Well, there’s a lesson for us on cybersecurity.

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