National Small Business Week SBA Awards & Resource Expo - #NSBW


Renschler Field at Pratt & Whitney Stadium
615 Silver Lane
East Hartford, CT 06118

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Moraima Gutierrez
Connecticut Business and Industry Association (CBIA)
SBA event

Join the Connecticut District SBA and CBIA May 4 as we wrap up National Small Business Week and honor the state’s small business person of the year and recognize eight other outstanding small business leaders.

National Small Business Week SBA Awards & Resource Expo

Thursday, May 04, 2023

2:00pm – 6:00pm

These entrepreneurial award winners were nominated by organizations throughout the state. As part of National Small Business Week, the U.S. SBA highlights the impact of outstanding small business owners and champions throughout the country.

You’ll also hear from iCleanse founder and CEO Chris Allen, who shares his entrepreneurial journey, while a panel of small business leaders from around the state discuss best practices and solutions for navigating a range of challenges.

And, you’ll have an opportunity to network with fellow business leaders and check out more than 30 small businesses at the Resource Expo.


1:30 pm | Registration & Networking

2 pm | Small Business Awards Presented by SBA

  • Small Business Person of the Year: Dennis Nash, Control Station (Manchester)
  • Exporter of the Year: Andrew Zeppa, Element 119 (Thomaston)
  • Minority Owned Small Business of the Year: Jay McLaurin & Henry Smith III, FAD Mechanical (North Haven)
  • Manufacturer of the Year: Pedro Soto, Hygrade (Plainville)
  • Microenterprise of the Year: Carol DiCarlo, Cheshire Equestrian (Cheshire)
  • National Subcontractor of the Year: Cindy Hersom, DICIN Electric Company (Waterford)
  • Young Entrepreneur of the Year: Brianna Regine Walston, Brianna Regine Visionary Consulting (Bridgeport)
  • Veteran-Owned Small Business of the Year: Jeffrey Nodden, Manchester Awning (Manchester)
  • Woman-Owned Small Business of the Year: Alisha Lynn Simpson-Watt, Collaborative ABA (Middletown)
  • Small Business Investment Company (SBIC) of the Year – Established Manager: Seth Alvord, Balance Point Capital (Westport)

2:45 pm | Networking Break

3 pm | Blood, Sweat, Tears: The Entrepreneur’s Journey

  • Introduction: Nick Poirier, Executive Director Business Banking Area Manager, J.P. Morgan Chase
  • Chris Allen, CEO, iCleanse

3:45 pm | Surviving & Thriving: Small Business Case Studies

  • Moderator: Jessica Dodge, Director of Momentum for Business Owners, Connecticut Wealth Management
  • Jill Mayer, CEO, Bead Industries

4:30 pm | Resource Expo & Networking Reception

6 pm | Adjourn