Contact: Rene Abadie
Date: March 27, 2013
HAMMOND – The Louisiana Small Business Development Center at Southeastern Louisiana University
has been awarded full accreditation by the Association of Small Business Development
Director William Joubert said the accreditation review, which is mandated by Congress, is modeled after criteria established by the national Institute of Standards and Technology.
"The review process involves an intensive examination of leadership and organizational management, strategy development, client and stakeholder focus, service delivery and program performance," Joubert explained.
The ASBDC notes that standards ensure the investments made by federal and state governments, as well as the host universities, result in strong returns for small business and the overall economy.
"This accreditation demonstrates the program and our center meet and exceed the expectations of our funding partners on the state and federal levels," Joubert said. "Our center will continue to serve the North Shore and the I-12 corridor by providing key resources needed for business development and growth."
The Southeastern center was recognized last year as the top center in the five-state region of Louisiana, Arkansas, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas. The achievement ranks the Southeastern center among the top 10 SBDCs in the nation for 2012.
Since 2004, the Southeastern LSBDC has served more than 3,800 clients and helped open or expand 223 businesses. More than 2,400 new jobs have been developed with $328 million in capital formation.
"This achievement affirms our commitment to providing quality programs, the highest customer satisfaction and continuous improvement," said LSBDC State Director Mary Lynn Wilkerson. "Maintaining our accreditation is critical for the LSBDC to continue serving small businesses and supporting economic development across Louisiana."
In its accreditation report, the review team recognized the LSBDC's business continuity and risk management program as a "Best Practice." The program, called Ready for Anything, provides businesses with education, training and management assistance needed to minimize losses and increase survivability when affected by workplace disruptions such as natural or man-made disasters. LSBDC was also commended for ongoing disaster response efforts following the oil spill and the five hurricanes that have struck Louisiana in recent years.