President’s administration official headed to Pittsburgh

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Winslow Sargeant, Ph.D, chief advocate for small business research and regulatory affairs, will make an appearance in Pittsburgh, Monday, Oct.10 at the Fairmont Hotel during the 5:30 p.m. Building Bridges for Business, third in a series of business symposiums. Appointed to his position by President Barack Obama in 2009, Sargeant, a business advocate and entrepreneurial expert, will serve as the keynote speaker during the event titled “Welcome to Oz—Where Small Business and Sustainability Collide.”

Sargeant
READY TO SHARE—Appointed by President Barack Obama, Winslow Sargeant, chief advocate for small business research and regulatory will be in Pittsburgh Oct. 10.

“Small business owners from all over the region will benefit greatly from this event and from Sargeant’s presentation,” said Ed Gainey, community development specialist for the Mayor’s Office. “It is not every day that we get someone from President Obama’s administration coming to Pittsburgh to discuss issues and share knowledge that will impact small businesses.”

The Office of Advocacy is an independent voice for small business within the federal government with a mission of encouraging policies that support small business start-ups, growth, and development.

Sargeant, the sixth chief counsel for advocacy of the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Office of Advocacy, sees the entrepreneurial spirit as uniquely American and as a path to wealth and job creation. As chief counsel, he directs advocacy’s operations, which include conducting research on the U.S. small business sector; fighting for small businesses within the federal government’s agencies and rulemaking processes; reaching out to regional and state small business advocates and policymakers; and fostering public awareness of small business contributions and concerns.

Excited about his upcoming visit to Pittsburgh, Sargeant says, “When I travel across the country and meet with small business men and women I consistently hear about their concerns regarding access to capital. A need that is critical to grow their business and promote jobs.” He said his message to the Oct. 10 attendees will be the same that he shares during his travels, “…to take advantage of all that the Small Business Administration has to offer. It can seem challenging at first, but the local SBA District Office in Pittsburgh, your local Small Business Development Centers and SCORE counselors are a tremendous resource.”

Other event activities will include opening remarks by Mayor Luke Ravenstahl and remarks by Tim Carryer; CEO of Green Over Green. Sustainable and green companies will be on hand sharing cash generating environmental savings techniques. Presentations will include Reduce Your Information Technology Expense by Cloud Computing, Electronics Recycling and IT Asset Recovery by Evolution e-cycling, Reduce the Carbon Footprint by Bike Pittsburgh, and Electronic Financial Services by ESCI. Exhibitors will consist of The Urban Redevelopment Authority of Pittsburgh, Sustainable Pittsburgh, The Green Building Alliance, Comcast, Enterprise Rent a Car, Pittsburgh Business Times and Staples.

“Welcome to Oz—Where Small Business and Sustainability Collide” is designed to educate and empower business owners. “Small businesses are the lifeline of neighborhood business districts and their success and growth is key to maintaining a livable and vibrant City,” said Mayor Ravenstahl. “Through opportunities like this, we hope to help small business owners and aspiring entrepreneurs achieve success by educating them on the many tools and existing programs that are currently available to them.”

In addition to Building Bridges for Business, the seminar is hosted by Allegheny County, The City of Pittsburgh, Duquesne University Small Business Development Center and the Center for Women’s Entrepreneurship Chatham University. Sponsors are The Pittsburgh Technology Council, The Pittsburgh Business Times, Fireman Creative, Cleveled, Enterprise Rent a Car, Cold Cypress, Solutions4networks, Louis Plung and Comcast Business Class.

Founded by Linda Handley, a local entrepreneur, author and business advisor, Building Bridges for Business focuses on business growth, promotion, management, and people who want to launch a new business. Its goal she said is to exist as an organization that truly serves the small business owner or struggling entrepreneur. “The vision for the Building Bridges for Business community is an environment where entrepreneurs can grow and advance their business, support other business owners, and develop as entrepreneurs giving back to their community,” Hanley said.

“Attending events such as this serves as a good learning instrument for area entrepreneurs,” attests Gainey. “This event and others like it will allow participants to expand networking opportunities and meet valuable business resources at the same time.” Encouraging business owners to attend and take the opportunity to hear what Sargeant has to share, he said, “As Pittsburgh continues to diversify its economy, small business will be critical to the development of the city. We want to be prepared.”

(To register for the Oct. 10 “Welcome to Oz—Where Small Business and Sustainability Collide,” visit http://www.buildingbridges­forbusiness.org.)

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