Recently, the Nicholls State University Small Business Development Center was awarded the “2022 Small Business Development Center Service and Innovation Center Award” by the United States Small Business Association Louisiana District Office, according to a news release from the school.
The Louisiana Small Business Development Center at Nicholls State University (LSBDC at Nicholls) is an organization that strives to offer business consulting and entrepreneurial workshops to small businesses in Lafourche and Terrebonne parishes. In winning the “2022 Small Business Development Center Service and Innovation Award,” the LSBDC at Nicholls has received one of the top awards in the state of Louisiana.
The award was accepted by Jimmy Nguyen, the Associate Director for LSBDC at Nicholls, and Suzanne Carlos, a Business Consultant for LSBD at Nicholls. These two accepted the award during the 2022 Louisiana Small Business Awards Ceremony, which was held at the Capitol Park Museum in Baton Rouge during National Small Business Week.
The ceremony, which is held annually, serves as an opportunity for the Louisiana Economic Development (LED) and the U.S. Small Business Association (SBA) to publicly recognize both business owners and supporters who exemplify the entrepreneurial resilience and diversity of the state of Louisiana.
The “2022 Small Business Development Center Service and Innovation Center Award” was awarded to Nicholls’ Jimmy Nguyen and Suzanne Carlos. Nguyen commented on his receiving the honor by saying, “receiving this award is one of my greatest accomplishments. It’s been a goal of mine since taking on a leadership role in 2018. couldn’t have been able to achieve this without the support of Nicholls State University, our Bayou Region partners, and my clients. My clients have persevered through the pandemic and Ida which gives me the strength to continue to do my best each day.”
In announcing their awarding this prestigious honor, the Small Business Association (SBA) Louisiana District had highlighted the Nicholls Small Business Development Center (SBDC) for their clearly present and exemplary hard work, innovative ideas, and dedication to the Bayou Region Community.
Over the past three years alone, the Nicholls SBDC has made a significant impact on the economy in the Bayou Region, especially since 2019 when they began a partnership with Chevron. Since 2019, both Chevron and the Nicholls SBDC have hosted pitch competitions that award funding capital to innovative entrepreneurs and start-up businesses in the Bayou Region for their ideas that best strengthen the local economy.
In 2020, the Nicholls SBDC hosted a Virtual Pitch Competition in a partnership with Chevron and the Nicholls College of Business Administration to assist Bayou Region businesses in recovering from the COVID-19 pandemic. Additionally and more recently, both Chevron and the Nicholls SBDC had partnered together following Hurricane Ida in 2021 to award disaster relief grants to Bayou Region businesses affected by the detrimental storm. Furthermore, the Nicholls SBDC also worked closely with the new Bayou Region Incubator so that they may provide assistance for business owners working with organizations to target coastal erosion.
At the ceremony, LED Secretary Don Pierson announced that in 2021, LED and the LSBDC Network had served 18,408 small businesses and individuals, which resulted in the creation of 1,126 new jobs, the retention of 2,874 jobs, and the launch of 164 new businesses. This represented more than $83 million in capital formation.
Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards addresses attendees of the ceremony in a virtual address saying, ”sustaining business stability and growth has never been more challenging than in these last few years. On behalf of the state which you so lovingly support, it gives me great pleasure to honor the Small Business Award recipients whose skill, determination, resourcefulness and optimism embody the heart, and soul of our state.”
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