Success Stories

Photo of Tommy Ray Cornett, Owner of Bleed Blue Tattoo & Piercing, Inc.

Brief description of the business:  Tommy Ray Cornett has been an artist his entire life. Whether drawing temporary tattoos on children in elementary school or sketching while stationed in Germany during his U.S. Army career, he has always been passionate about art. Tommy began his professional tattooing career in his hometown of Cincinnati in 1998 while attending the University of Cincinnati, where he majored in Design. Eight years later, he opened Bleed Blue Tattoo & Piercing Inc. in Lexington, KY and home of the University of Kentucky (UK).

Bleed Blue, a name reflecting the passion for UK’s “Big Blue Nation,” is the premier professional studio in the Lexington area in central Kentucky. The business was established there in January 2008 by Mr. Cornett, another artist and partner at the time, and Cornett’s future spouse, Jessica. The company’s mission, in addition to providing superb tattoos and piercings, is to educate the public on the appropriate safety and technical... Read More

Shannon and Scott Clements started C&C Roofing, Inc., a woman-owned business in 2007. They provide on-site manufacturing of roof panels and rolling, and all of the flashing for projects is manufactured at their facility in Morganfield, KY. The company focuses on commercial and government work and is a frequent contractor at the Ft. Campbell Army Base in southern KY/northern TN.

Scott Clements is nationally renowned for his expertise in the roofing industry, and he is often called upon for his knowledge by other industry leaders. He first focuses on building trust and respect. “I’ve been in the business for 13 years prior to going out on my own, so the experience as well as the contacts I made in the industry prepared me well for not just commercial roofing work but also for government contracting opportunities,” said Scott, who understands the value of developing long-term relationships and a solid reputation. In fact, the company motto is “no laps, no leaks,” and they... Read More

Yolanda Bradford started her first business in 1995, YLB Accounting Services, in Shelbyville, KY. The company quickly evolved, and Ms. Bradford changed the name to YLB Accounting and Consulting Services, Inc. a few years later to more adequately reflect the firm’s focus.

Ms. Bradford met with Robert Coffey at the SBA Kentucky District Office in 2009 to discuss the 8(a) Business Development Program and was quickly accepted into the program. The 8(a) certification enabled YLB to obtain several profitable contracts, and the company quickly added 10 employees.

That same year, YLB applied for an ARC loan for $35,000. The loan was approved and used to help improve the company’s cash flow, as YLB had just lost a major contract due to the downturn in the economy. As cash balances improved, Ms. Bradford also purchased equipment for the company’s expansion.    

In 2011, YLB applied for a 504 loan to purchase the building that the company had been leasing for almost three... Read More

Sisters Tea Parlor & Boutique is located in Buckner, KY.  Equal parts tea room and gift shop, the business is located in a prosperous suburb just 20 minutes northeast of Louisville, KY.  While successful on the surface, Sisters needed SBA assistance to survive.

Connie Young founded Sisters Gift Shop in 2002.  The business grew slowly but steadily, and Ms. Young moved the location twice in five years for more space as well as better parking and visibility.  Ms. Young decided to add a tea room but knew that would require even more space, necessitating a fourth and final move.

Connie Young renamed the business Sisters Tea Parlor & Boutique and asked her daughter, Lori Crowe, to help manage the firm.  With 12 years of experience in marketing and management, Crowe also brought with her a passion for baking.   The mother/daughter team developed the tea room concept.  “In our minds, this idea could only succeed.  Since we were not a traditional restaurant, there wasn... Read More