Success Stories

SBA Straight Talk, Resources Help Retiree Build Business from the Ground Up

BUFFALO, NY – It was desire that motivated retired secretary, Mary Beth Glatz to create SandDancer, a canine swim therapy and fitness facility she opened in Orchard Park, New York in 2013.  Inspired by her beloved Labrador Retriever, the idea of canine swim therapy was easy.  Mary Beth recalls, “Several months prior to the end of our Labrador Retriever’s life, our veterinarian recommended swim therapy to help with his deteriorating health.  Not only did the swimming extend his life, it improved his quality of life.”  These results prompted Mary Beth’s research of canine swim facilities and the future opening of her dream business.

An encore entrepreneur, Glatz says, “After having a taste of being an entrepreneur 20 plus years ago, I had the yearning to again become an entrepreneur.  I had the concept and the experience to imagine my vision but I also knew I needed additional guidance to bring... Read More

Daniel Mitchell is a US Army Combat Medic veteran, who served our country from 1989 to 1993 in the Persian Gulf and Somalia. 

He grew up in nearby Utica, New York where at just age 12 he began working in gyms.  At this young age, he knew he wanted to change lives.  “I felt I had a purpose in life to enhance our quality of life with exercise.  I wanted to release this life force through health, training and discipline, said Mitchell.”  As founder and owner of The Soap Box, a health and fitness club located in downtown Buffalo, New York, I knew I had the tools to help change lives but knew I needed additional resources to maintain my business structure and add clients.”

Passionate about his clients and the desire to open a second location, Daniel contacted the Small Business Development Center at Buffalo State College and found William Grieshober, Small Business Advisor.  Daniel continued to meet with Bill, working on writing a business plan, managing numbers and... Read More

Encore Entrepreneur Hires the Help

In 2009, Michele (Mickie) Muirhead, now 50, decided she wanted to start her own business, launching in Jamestown New York. offers house cleaning , elderly care, vehicle detail services (pick-up and delivery), and assistance with computers, pet sitting, landscaping, painting, handyman services, snow removal  and almost anything you can imagine in Chautauqua, Cattaraugus and Warren counties.

Muirhead says she was looking for something different.  After rupturing a disk in her back she was physically unable to perform at her cleaning business.  So out of a desire to help individuals, and use her degree in social work, Muirhead sought business startup advice from the SBA’s Small Business Development Center at Jamestown Community College.

“Jamestown SBDC Business Advisor Curt Anderson was extremely helpful.  He has so much energy and motivation.  His entrepreneurial advice and concern for my business helped me to use my years of... Read More

GSA Awarded $10 Million in Contracts to Small Businesses in WNY

Business Matchmaker Puts Contracts into the Hands of Small Business 

An agency dedicated to connecting small businesses with people who can help them, and programs that can grow their skills has awarded over $10 million in contract dollars to Western New York small businesses.  The General Services Administration‘s Acquisition Management Division – Upstate Unit  based in Syracuse, New York has been attending SBA’s Business Matchmaker for the past five years.

After all, a big part of GSA’s mission matches perfectly with the mission of the SBA Business Matchmaker: both  help the small business community reach key contracting experts to help navigate the procurement process and provides opportunities for small businesses to hold face-to-face appointments with government and procurement officials regarding potential contracts “Before Matchmaker, our office had not been exposed to the diverse and dynamic small disadvantaged businesses looking to compete in the... Read More