New York City Small Business Owner Named SBA's New York State Small Business Person of the Year

New York – Pamela Newman was pregnant with triplets when her Long Island house burned down and forced her and her husband to move in with her parents. Not long before, Newman was let go from her marketing job with a top firm in New York where she worked on such campaigns as the Slim Fast Diet program with then Los Angeles Dodgers’ manager, Tommy Lasorda.

“What it came down to was that we needed to eat,” Newman said at her company’s headquarters near JFK in Queens. “We installed a commercial telephone line in the house and started our business from my parents’ basement. That was 1991. Today we contract with six federal agencies in seven states and employ 250 people. It turned out that the triplets and the fire were actually very big blessings for us.”

This ability to turn problems into opportunities is part of the reason why the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) selected Newman as the 2017 New York State Small Business Person of the Year. As the state winner, Newman represented New York at SBA’s Small Business Person of the Year award ceremony Monday, May 1st, 2017, in Washington, D.C.

“More than half of all Americans either own or work for a small business, and they create about two out of three net new jobs in the U.S. each year,” SBA Administrator Linda McMahon said. “I couldn’t be prouder of all the awardees this year – they are working to grow small businesses, create 21st century jobs, drive innovation, and increase America’s global competitiveness.”

Since her company’s inception, Newman has been working to increase America’s safety. Through contracts with major airlines such as Air Jamaica and Avianca, ISS Action Security helped fight the U.S. drug war in the 1990s. Newman’s company has protected New York City by providing armed and unarmed guards to the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. With the help of SBA's 8(a) program, she’s contracted with NASA, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), the Department of Transportation (DOT) and the Maritime Administration (MARAD). ISS Action Security provides badge and ID services, emergency response plans, risk management services, mobile patrols and anti-pilfering programs through its New York, Florida and New Jersey training facilities. In 2016, the company’s gross revenue was right around $14 million.

New York District SBA Director Beth Goldberg congratulated Newman and ISS Action Security, and pointed to an increase in sales, growth in number of employees, market staying power and participation in SBA programming as highlights of the company’s performance.

“Pam Newman was a graduate of SBA New York’s very first Emerging Leaders Program in 2015,” Goldberg said. “SBA helped the company locate to a new building with a 504 real estate loan and has approved a second loan for $4.25 million to build a state-of-the-art training center near JFK. SBA's  8(a) program helped ISS Action Security develop its talents and resources more effectively to win sole source government contracts. This is a great SBA success story that we’re proud to share with the community.”

Newman said that the business plan she created in SBA’s Emerging Leaders Program helped her survive a subcontractor backing out of one of her major contracts. Earlier in the life of her business, 18 banks refused to loan her money before the 19th said yes under the condition that she put her house up as collateral. Her new building in Queens has given ISS Action a new home near the airport where business first took off for her more than 20 years ago. No matter the challenge, she’s found a way to continue, growing and strengthening her business along the way.

“Owning a small business is really about building a family,” Newman said. “We started because we needed a way to provide for our family, and now our family of employees is what keeps us going and helps make the business strong.”

 

 

Company Name: 
ISS Action Security
Location: 
New York City