Success Stories


Allegheny Science & Technology (AST), a technology and energy consulting firm, was co-founded by President and CEO Arria Hines and COO Bob Wentz. The duo saw a need for specialized program technology management and energy services in the federal government.

They started the firm with three employees, one federal contract, and $135,000 in annual revenue. The company was looking to grow and turned to the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) for help.


In 2009 SBA certified AST as an 8(a), economically disadvantaged, woman-owned small business. This defining moment started a path of drastic growth for AST.

While in the 8(a) program AST benefited from numerous counseling sessions through the district office, which provided valuable feedback. Creating annual reviews, business planning, and systematic evaluations kept AST on a positive trajectory. During the 8(a) program, AST successfully competed for and won multiple federal 8... Read More


American Muscle Docks & Fabrication is a fabricator, builder, and supplier of floating & stationary-built boat docks, dock hardware, and aluminum gangways.

Their story started in 1963 when Paul J. Diserio established a metal stamping business, Valley Manufacturing Incorporated in Wellsburg, WV. The business started out of necessity because Diserio lost his job when the company he was working for was sold to their competitor and all operations were shut down.

After working and building the company for nearly 25 years, Diserio passed down the business to his son Paul R. Diserio in 1987. At that time, metal fabrication was added to the business and became the focus of the company in order to capture larger jobs.  In 1999 Valley Manufacturing landed a large contract and became the sole metal fabricator for Follansbee Dock Systems. Follansbee was considered an international market leader in manufacturing floating dock systems and components.

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Alpha Technologies, LLC is a business technology focused company providing comprehensive solutions that allow clients to focus on growing their business while Alpha manages their technology. The company was created by Douglas Tate, Army Veteran, who has lead Alpha to serve ten states within the United States and 17 countries internationally.

Alpha was ready to take on a large game changing project to install a 35 mile high-capacity fiber ring around the community of Charleston, WV with the purpose of delivering high speed internet and data center connectivity to the area.

Local banks had a difficult time understanding the risks and rewards of such a high technology project and were reluctant to assist with funding.


Doug turned to his trusted West Virginia Small Business Development Center Business Coach Terry Cyfers. The West Virginia Small Business Development Center is a resource partner of the U.S. Small Business... Read More


Screech Owl Brewing, a small craft brewery located in Bruceton Mills, WV, is owned and operated by husband-wife duo Roger and Crista Johnson. Roger retired from over the road trucking to spend more time at home and has turned his passion for home brewing into a second career. Crista has a strong background in business and in addition to her responsibilities with Screech Owl Brewing is responsible for freight dispatch for multiple trucking companies.

Screech Owl started with a 3.5 gallon brew system and saw immediate success. They had a huge demand for their product but with the current system they were unable to keep up with the demand from their customers.


Screech Owl was luckily connected with Lindsey Teets, a business coach with the U.S. Small Business Administration’s resource partner the West Virginia Small Business Development Center. With help from Teets they were able to obtain a $50,000 loan from the First Microloan of West... Read More