Buffalo District Office Small Business Week 2019 Award Nominations Guidelines

Deadline for submission: 3:00 p.m. ET, January 9, 2019

Buffalo District Small Business Week
May 5-May 11, 2019

Do you or someone you know have what it takes to become America’s “Small Business Person of the Year” for 2019? If so, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) Buffalo District office wants to hear from you.

The U.S. Small Business Administration Buffalo District Office is proud to announce that the SBA’s Buffalo District office is ready to accept nominations for its 2019 District Small Business Week Awards, including the annual Small Business Person of the Year award.

The Buffalo District’s Small Business Week will be held from May 5 through May 11, 2019.
Our Annual Small Business Week Awards luncheon will be held on Friday, May 11.

The nomination, eligibility criteria, selection process, evaluation criteria and time frame for the various SBA Awards selected from nominated individuals or businesses are set forth in the following pages.

SBA Buffalo District Office Awards:

  • Small Business Person of the Year (National & District)
  • Exporter of the Year (National & District)
  • SBA Young Entrepreneur of the Year
  • Family-Owned Business of the Year
  • Financial Services Champion of the Year
  • Home-Based Business of the Year
  • Minority Small Business Champion or Business of the Year
  • Veteran Small Business Champion or Business of the Year
  • Women in Business Champion or Business of the Year
  • Government Contracting Champion of the Year

SBA will make the above referenced awards to eligible small businesses at the Buffalo district level only. Awards for Small Business Person of the Year and Exporter of the Year will be forwarded for National competition.

Small Business Person of the Year Award

Who is eligible to be nominated for this award?

Nominees for this award must meet the following eligibility requirements. Consult your nearest SBA district office if you have questions.

  1. Any legal resident of the United States or its Territories who owns and operates or who bears principal responsibility for operating a small business for a minimum of three years may be nominated. Partners who jointly own and operate a small business may be nominated as a “team,” so long as the number of individuals in the team nomination does not exceed four (4);and
  2. Individuals who have received one type of SBA assistance such as, but not limited to an SBA loan, SCORE counseling, Small Business Development Center (SBDC) assistance, Veteran’s Business Outreach Center (VBOC) assistance, Women’s Business Center (WBC) assistance, government contracting assistance, disaster assistance, Emerging Leaders Initiative, or Boots to Business training

Who is NOT eligible to be nominated for this award?

  1. Individuals who have received the Small Business Person Award at the State level within the past three years;
  2. Elected officials;
  3. Individuals or teams who own or operate a business defined as “other than small” (i.e. large businesses) for its primary industry under the applicable SBA size standards; or
  4. Individuals or firms who are currently suspended or debarred by the Federal government.

Who may submit nominations for this award?

  1. Individuals or organizations dedicated to the support of the small business community in the United States such as trade and professional associations and business organizations, may submit nominations for the Small Business Person of the Year award.
  2. Individuals may self-nominate.

Where are the nominations to be sent?

All nominations must be hand delivered or mailed to the U.S. Small Business Administration district office in the state or territory where the nominee is located. Electronic submissions of SBA Awards Forms are not accepted.

When is the deadline for nominations?

3:00 p.m. ET, January 9, 2019

What information must the nomination package contain?

Nominations must contain the information below. Incomplete nomination packages will not be considered.

  1. A completed background form (SBA Form 3300, Award Nominee Background Form). For “team” nominations, a background form is required for each team member;
  2. A completed nomination form (SBA Form 3301, Small Business Person of the Year);
  3. An original 8” x 10” or 5” x 7” photo of the nominee or a digital photo – at least 300 dpi is required; photocopies are not acceptable. For “team” nominations, a photo of each nominee or group photo is acceptable; and
  4. Additional supporting documentation deemed significant by the nominator, including news clips, letters of recommendation, nomination letter (if not self-nominated) and other evidence of the appropriateness of the nomination (supporting documentation must not exceed 10 pages). Videos will not be considered.

What are the evaluation/selection criteria?

In evaluating the nomination packages, the judges will look at the following criteria:

  1. Staying power — a substantiated history as an established business; including but not limited to expansion, exporting, addition of territories, or growth in square footage occupied;
  2. Growth in number of employees — Increases over the three years must be in excess of growth in Gross Domestic Product;
  3. Increase in sales, net profit, and net worth for the three prior calendar years, that is, 2015, 2016 and 2017;
  4. Response to adversity — examples of problems faced in the nominee’s business and the methods used to solve them; and
  5. Contributions to community-oriented projects — evidence of the use of his/her personal time and resources.

What are the selection procedures?

Small Business Persons of the Year Award winners will be selected at the State and National levels.

  1. In those states served by a single SBA district office, the district office will select the State winner.
  2. In those states served by more than one SBA district office, each district office will select a district level winner and the State winner will be selected at the regional level. The regional office will select the State winner.
  3. SBA districts that serve more than one state will send their top nominee for each state for a runoff decided by the SBA regional office. For example, if the SBA Richmond District Office and SBA Washington DC Metropolitan Area Office both select winners from Virginia, those awardees will compete to be the Virginia State Winner. The regional office will select the State winner.
  4. The National Small Business Person of the Year will be selected by the SBA Administrator based on, but not restricted to, the recommendations of the panel of judges of federal employees.

Small Business Exporter of the Year

SBA’s Small Business Exporter of the Year recognizes individuals for their success and dedication to exporting products or services. Previous winners include SeaDek, Endoscopy Replacement Parts, Inc., Sawyer Manufacturing Company and Baby Elephant Ears, Inc.

Who is eligible to be nominated for this award?

Nominees for this award must meet the following eligibility requirements. Consult your nearest SBA district office if you have questions.

  1. Any legal resident of the United States or its Territories who owns and operates or who bears principal responsibility for operating a small business for a minimum of three years may be nominated. Partners who jointly own and operate a small business may be nominated as a “team,” so long as the number of individuals in the team nomination does not exceed four (4); and
  2. Individuals who have received one type of SBA assistance such as, but not limited to an SBA loan, SCORE counseling, Small Business Development Center (SBDC) assistance, Veteran’s Business Outreach Center (VBOC) assistance, Women’s Business Center (WBC) assistance, government contracting assistance, disaster assistance, Emerging Leaders Initiative, or Boots to Business Training.

Who is NOT eligible to be nominated for this award?

  1. Individuals who have received the Small Business Exporter Award at the Regional level within the past three years;
  2. Elected officials;
  3. Individuals or teams who own or operate a business defined as “other than small” (i.e. large businesses) for its primary industry under the applicable SBA size standards; or
  4. Individuals or firms who are currently suspended or debarred by the Federal government

Who may submit nominations?

  1. Individuals or organizations dedicated to the support of the small business community in the United States, such as trade and professional associations and business organizations, may submit nominations for the Small Business Exporter of the Year award.
  2. Individuals may self-nominate.

Where are the nominations to be sent?

All nominations must be hand delivered or mailed to the U.S. Small Business Administration district office in the state or territory where the nominee is located. Electronic submissions of SBA Awards Forms are not accepted.

When is the deadline for nominations?

3:00 p.m. ET, January 9, 2019

What information must the nomination package contain?

Nominations must contain the information below. Incomplete nomination packages will not be considered.

  1. A completed background form (SBA Form 3300, Award Nominee Background Form). For “team” nominations, a background form is required for each team member;
  2. A completed nomination form (SBA Form 3302, Small Business Exporter of the Year);
  3. An original 8” x 10” or 5” x 7” photo of the nominee or a digital photo – at least 300 dpi is required; photocopies are not acceptable. For “team” nominations, a photo of each nominee or group photo is acceptable; and
  4. Additional supporting documentation deemed significant by the nominator, including news clips, letters of recommendation, nomination letter (if not self-nominated) and other evidence of the appropriateness of the nomination (supporting documentation must not exceed 10 pages). Videos will not be considered.

What are the evaluation/selection criteria?

In evaluating the nomination packages for the Exporter of the Year award, the judges will use the following criteria:

  1. Increased sales, profits and/or growth of employment because of exporting. Clearly articulate what exporting has meant to the company (e.g. exports as a percentage of sales, jobs created by exporting, etc.);
  2. Creative overseas marketing strategies, exporting history, and current export markets;
  3. Effective solutions to export-related problems, including trade financing, payment, and currency issues, market-entry and logistical challenges, cultural differences, etc.;
  4. Demonstrated encouragement of other small businesses to export and/or volunteer assistance to other small businesses entering the export market; and
  5. Effective use of Federal and/or State government trade promotion or financing programs.

What are the selection procedures?

SBA will make Small Business Exporter of the Year awards to eligible small businesses at the District, Regional and National levels.

  1. District offices will select one winner to compete at the regional level.
  2. The Regional offices will select one winner to compete at the national level.
  3. The National Small Business Exporter of the Year will be selected by the SBA Administrator based on, but not restricted to, the recommendations of the panel of judges of federal employees.

District Awards:

To be nominated and receive one of the following awards, the small business nominee must fit within the category of the award.

SBA Young Entrepreneur of the Year:

To be considered a young entrepreneur, the individual must serve as a majority owner and operate or bear principal responsibility for operating a small business with a three year track record, and who will not have reached the age of 30 by June 1, 2019.

Family-Owned Business of the Year:

This award honors a family-owned and operated business which has been passed on from one generation to the next. The owner must also serve as a majority owner and operator or bear principal responsibility for operating a small business with at least a 15-year track record.

Financial Services Champion of the Year:

An individual who assists small businesses through advocacy efforts to increase the usefulness and availability of accounting or financial services for small businesses may be nominated. Nominees may or may not be small business owners.

Home-Based Business of the Year:

An individual who has experienced the rewards and difficulties of owning a home-based business.

Minority Small Business Champion or Business of the Year:

An individual who has fulfilled a commitment to the advancement of small business opportunities for minority business owners may be nominated or a minority-owned small business owner has experienced the rewards and difficulties of owning their own business. Champion nominees may or may not be small business owners.

Veteran Small Business Champion or Business of the Year:

An individual who has fulfilled a commitment to the advancement of small business opportunities for veterans of the U.S. armed forces may be nominated or a veteran small business owner who has experienced the rewards and difficulties of owning their own business. Champion nominees may or may not be veterans.

Women in Business Champion or Business of the Year:

An individual who has fulfilled a commitment to the advancement of women’s business ownership may be nominated or a women-owned small business owner who has experienced the rewards and difficulties of owning their own business . Champion nominees may or may not be small business owners.

Government Contracting Champion of the Year:

An individual who has fulfilled a commitment to the advancement of small business opportunities in Government Contracting. Nominees may or may not be small business owners.

Nominees Residency Requirement:

Nominees must also be residents of and employed in the United States or its territories and one of the 14 counties served by the Buffalo District office and will be subject to background checks. Small businesses owned and operated by nominees must comply with federal civil rights laws. Consult the SBA Buffalo District Office if you have questions.

Who may submit nominations for these awards?

Any individual or organization dedicated to the support of the small business community in the United States, including, but not limited to, trade and professional associations and business organizations, may submit nominations for these Small Business Champion Awards. Individuals may not be nominated for more than one award category.

Where are the nominations to be sent?

Nominations must be submitted to the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Buffalo District Office, 130 South Elmwood Avenue, Suite 540, Buffalo, NY 14202. Attention: Kelly LoTempio, PIO/EDS.

What is the deadline for nominations?

All nominations for the above Small Business Champion Awards must be postmarked or hand delivered to the Buffalo SBA district office no later than January 9, 2019.

What information must the nomination package contain?

Nominations must contain the information below. Incomplete nomination packages will not be considered.

  1. A completed background form (SBA Form 3300, Award Nominee Background Form). For “team” nominations, a background form is required for each team member;
  2. A completed nomination form (SBA Form 3315, District Office Award);
  3. An original 8” x 10” or 5” x 7” photo of the nominee or a digital photo – at least 300 dpi is required; photocopies are not acceptable. For “team” nominations, a photo of each nominee or group photo is acceptable
  4. Additional supporting documentation deemed significant by the nominator, including news clips, letters of recommendation, nomination letter (if not self-nominated) and other evidence of the appropriateness of the nomination (supporting documentation must not exceed 10 pages). Videos will not be considered; and
  5. A description of the business to include any special highlights.

What are the selection procedures for this award?

The SBA Small Business Champions and Small Business’s will be selected for the Buffalo District Office. Winners at each level will be selected by a panel of judges. Selected winners in each category will be honored at the SBA Buffalo District Small Business Week Awards Luncheon on May 11, 2019. National award winners will be forwarded to our NY Regional office for the National competition.

For assistance with your nomination:

Kelly LoTempio
PIO/EDS
SBA Buffalo District Office
Kelly.lotempio@sba.gov
(716) 551-3249