“Nice job today. The luncheon went like clockwork and I liked the way you handled the TX Small Business Awards. I thoroughly enjoyed eating my way thru the exhibit hall! It was well spaced and there was a good variety of resources and small businesses.” - Joy Miller, City of Austin SBDP
On Thursday, June 12th 2014 representatives from the Office of the Governor, the Austin Chamber of Commerce, and key community leaders presented the Governor’s Small Business Forum and Showcase. During the luncheon, Texas Workforce Commissioner Hope Andrade spoke about public and private resources for all businesses including women and minority-owned small businesses, veterans and those interested in expanding globally.
During the luncheon, a Small Business Owner Expert Panel Discussion, moderated by Leon Chen of Tiff’s Treats, discussed what inspired them to open a business, what struggles and successes have they’ve had, and more. The panel featured Laura Fowler of The Fowler Law Firm, Gil Jenkins of The Blues Crawlers, Thomas Miranda of Sparkovation, and Michael Portman of Bird’s Barbershops.
In addition to the discussion, a number of small businesses were recognized by the Office of the Governor and Texas Workforce Commission. We would like to congratulate the 2014 winners the State of Texas Small Business Awards which were presented to Ishmael Law Firm P.C, Strait Music, DEN Property Group. Encotech, Insidore P.L.L.C, and Villarreal Fine Jewelers.
Following the luncheon and awards, nearly 200 businesses took part in the small business showcase at the Palmer Events Center. Businesses were able to showcase their companies and benefit from the social networking environment. Attendees were also given the opportunity to attend a number of breakout sessions in which speakers presented a number of resources and ideas to improve their businesses. The speakers included:
- Vicky Valdez, Manager of Small Business Development Program, City of Austin, spoke about the steps it takes to receive funding for growth and start-up of a small business
- Randy Steinle, Board Member of The International Association of Microsoft Channel Partners (IAMCP), spoke about preparing your business to withstand unexpected disasters
- Tiffany Daniels, Workforce Solutions Capital Area Workforce Board, introduced no-cost programs and services available to help local companies find, hire, and retail skilled employees
- Dough Smith, Asst. Director of the International Trade Center at UTSA, Small Business Development Center, spoke about the importance and benefits of exporting from a small business perspective
- Sarah Romer, Manager Retail Market Development for PayPal, an eBay Inc. company, spoke about the smartphone shopping revolution and the new mobile Point of Sale systems
- Julie Niehoff Director of Education & Development, Constant Contact, Inc, spoke of simple ways to grow your business with email and social media
Favorite Tweet of the Day:
Having a sweet time at the #gsbftx with @HeyCupcakeATX! @TXGovSmallBiz
The Chamber would like to thank our speakers and all attendees for taking part in this great event!