National Awards

The U.S. Small Business Administration has two award categories that are recognized at the district, state, regional and national level: Small Business Person of the Year and Small Business Exporter of the Year.

Nomination deadline is Friday, January 17, 2014.

Following is a summary of the Small Business Person of the Year and Small Business Exporter of the Year Awards. Download the Nomination Guidelines for a complete guide.

2014 Nomination Guidelines
SBA Form 3300
SBA Form 2137

Small Business Person of the Year Award
SBA will make Small Business Person of the Year awards at the district level (in multi-district states), the State level (from each of the 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands and Guam) and the National level. The National Small Business Person of the Year is selected from the State winners.

Who is eligible to be nominated for this award?
Any individual who owns and operates or who bears principal responsibility for operating a small business 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.  A nominee for Small Business Person of the Year must own or operate a business defined as “small” under the applicable SBA size standards. Individuals who have received the Small Business Person Award at the State level within the past five years are not eligible.  Nominees must also be residents of the United States or its territories and will be subject to background checks. Small businesses owned and operated by nominees must comply with federal civil rights laws.  While receipt of SBA assistance is not required, it is preferred.  Consult Patti Guttmann at the St. Louis SBA district office if you have questions by calling 314-539-6615 or email patricia.guttmann@sba.gov.

Who may submit nominations for this award?
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 the Small Business Person of the Year award.  Individuals may not be nominated for more than one SBW 2013 award category.

What are the selection procedures for this award?
Small Business Persons of the Year Award winners will be selected at the district (in multi-district states), state and national levels. In those states served by more than one SBA district office, additional awards may also be given at the district level. Winners at each level will be selected by a panel of judges. Winners at each level will be considered for awards at the next highest level. Nomination packages for each state winner will be sent to the appropriate regional SBA office and prepared for transmittal to the SBA‘s Office of Communications and Public Liaison for review. The National Small Business Person of the Year will be selected by the SBA Administrator based on the recommendations of the Agency‘s National Small Business Week panel of judges. The winner will be announced during National Small Business Week. Non-federal employees serving as judges must sign a conflict of interest/non-disclosure certification.

Where are the nominations to be sent?
Nominations must be submitted in one of two ways:

1. Nominations may be submitted to the U.S. Small Business Administration, 1222 Spruce Street, Room 10.103, St. Louis, MO 63103 directed to the Attention of Patti Guttmann, EDS; or
2. Nominations may be submitted via the online nominations portal.

What is the deadline for nominations?
The deadline for nominations is Friday, January 17, 2014. All nominations for Small Business Person of the Year must be postmarked or hand delivered to Patti Guttman, EDS at the St. Louis SBA District Office, 1222 Spruce Street, Room 10.103, St. Louis, MO 63103, no later than Friday, January 17, 2014.

For the Small Business Exporter of the Year award you will need a package equivalent to the Small Business Person of the Year Award, plus the judges will look at the following criteria:

1. Increased sales, profits and/or growth of employment because of exporting.
2. The nomination package must include a description of the products exported and markets served.
3. Creative overseas marketing strategies.
4. Effective solutions to export-related problems.
5. Demonstrated encouragement of other small businesses to export.
6. Volunteer assistance to other small businesses entering the export market.
7. Cooperation with other businesses in the creation of export trading companies and/or introduction of unique trading relationships, products or services.
8. It is preferred they nominees have received SBA assistance to help the business grow. This will include assistance by one of the resource partners known as SCORE, Grace Hill WBC, Veteran’s Business Resource Center, or the Small Business and Technical Development Center; as well as an SBA-guaranteed with the help of the St. Louis District Office and United States Export Assistance Center in St. Louis, Missouri.

For more information, please contact:
Patricia L. Guttmann
Economic Development Specialist
HUBZone Liaison~Marketing and Outreach
Small Business Administration
1222 Spruce Street, Room 10.103
St. Louis, MO 63103-2831
(314) 539-6600, Ext. 255
Fax (314) 539-3785
patricia.guttmann@sba.gov