WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) Administrator Isabella Casillas Guzman issued the following statement, lauding the appointment of several key Biden-Harris Administration appointees to the SBA, including leadership for the Office of Native American Affairs and the Office of International Trade. This experienced collection of talented leaders will join previously announced appointees and thousands of SBA career public servants working tirelessly to equitably deliver economic relief to America's small businesses, innovative startups, and disaster-impacted communities and execute Administrator Guzman's priorities as the agency reimagines itself and to better support entrepreneurs at all stages of their life cycles in a post-COVID world.
“The SBA’s greatest asset is our people, and these new additions to our senior leadership team will be no exception as they help us further scale our capacity to connect America’s 32.5 million small businesses to the investments and opportunities they need to start, grow and be resilient,” Administrator Guzman said. “Gabriel, Jackson, Therese, and Olivia are joining an extraordinary SBA team that has been on the economic frontlines of this pandemic from day one, and I am looking forward to their valuable contributions as the SBA delivers on President Biden’s vision to build America’s small business economy back better so that we can effectively lift-up and invest in all of America’s emerging entrepreneurs from every corner of our nation.”
Appointees and their roles are listed per office below:
Office of International Trade
Gabriel Esparza, Associate Administrator. Previously, Gabriel served as a public official in the City of Los Angeles, appointed by the Mayor to the Board of Civil Service Commissioners, and as Vice President of Global Business Development in the Commercial Payments division at American Express. A seasoned executive with over 25 years of experience leading businesses, spanning both large corporations and nimble startups, Gabriel has also spent the past five years as an investor, advisor, and operator in a variety of entrepreneurial ventures. In addition, Gabriel played an integral role at RapidSOS, a government tech platform that provides a data-driven way for people to communicate with 911. He attended Stanford University and Harvard Business School.
Office of Entrepreneurial Development
Jackson S. Brossy, Assistant Administrator, Office of Native American Affairs. Before the SBA, Jackson served as executive director for both the Native CDFI Network, a 501(C)(3) advocacy group, and the Navajo Nation Washington Office, the official intergovernmental affairs office for the largest tribe in the nation. An advocate of access to capital and technical assistance for Native entrepreneurs, Jackson also serves on the board of Prosperity Now, Change Labs, and the Federal Reserve Bank’s Center for the Indian Country Development Leadership Council. He is an enrolled member of the Navajo Nation and attended Stanford University and Harvard University.
Office of Capital Access
Therese Meers, Deputy Associate Administrator. Previously, Therese served as Senior Counsel to the Senate Small Business Committee under Chair Ben Cardin of Maryland and co-founded a small business manufacturing company using SBA’s tools. She attended Duke University, the University of St. Andrews, and Harvard Law School and is a Florida native.
Office of the Administrator
Olivia Shestopal, Director of Advance. Before the SBA, Olivia served in various roles with President Biden’s team, including Advance Associate in the Offices of the Vice President and the Second Gentleman, and on the Biden for President Campaign’s Advance team. Olivia is also an alum of the Democratic National Committee (DNC), Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC), and the Democratic State Parties of Wisconsin and New Hampshire. A first-generation American from a Russian-Jewish family, she attended Goucher College and is a native of the New England area.
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 www.sba.gov.