Twenty-two (22) small businesses were selected to participate in this comprehensive 10-month business development training course designed to help experienced business owners increase revenue, improve operations and recruit great employees. This year’s cohort is one of the most diverse groups in the program’s history, with 50 percent of participants representing minority-owned businesses, and 64 percent representing woman-owned businesses.
The Portland Business Alliance is committed to promoting and supporting small business and job growth, and each year, the Alliance awards program scholarships to 12 small business owners. This year, however, the alliance increased access to the program to meet the demand for participation. Each scholarship offers $1,300 toward the $ 1,800-course tuition. As an added bonus, each participant receives a two-year small business level Alliance membership, valued at $820/year, for a total scholarship package valued at $2,940. These scholarships are made possible thanks to a generous partnership with Bank of America.
“Small business is a tremendous economic engine in Portland,” said Art Avitia, Portland Business Alliance Board Member and Senior Relationship Manager, Global Commercial Banking for Bank of America. “As long-time supporters of PCC’s SBDC, we applaud the selection of the most diverse cohort of participants yet, and we will continue to work together to make sure that our region’s economic recovery and growth is equitable and open to diverse entrepreneurs and business owners. That starts with ensuring more access to these critical business development programs and the resources small business owners need.”
The course is designed for small business owners who are currently — or want to begin – selling products or services outside of the Portland region; have been in business for at least two years; have at least one employee; and, who are looking to grow their business. “This course brings together the best features of a small business learning environment; real-life experience and knowledge from subject matter experts as instructors, business advising concurrently, and a cohort of individual sharing ideas, resources, and information,” says Tammy Marquez-Oldham, Director of the Portland Community College’s Small Business Development Center.
Adds Lead Instructor and Business Advisor of the SBDC, Dr. Sean Harry: “Participants in the program run successful businesses, but have some gaps in their knowledge around some aspect of business. They are the experts at what they do but need additional help in building their business around their expertise. The program provides them with a 360-degree approach to business and helps them fill in those gaps so they can be more successful.”
Indeed, program graduates gain tremendous perspective and tools to better develop themselves as business leaders. SBDC graduate Leo Ochoa shares: “The biggest growth I’ve experienced during the Advanced SBM Program has been on changing my mindset from a startup founder to a small business owner. Learning to shift my mindset from operating like a technician to a manager to an entrepreneur has tremendous value in how I operate my business now.”
Topics for this year’s program include, but are not limited to: sourcing capital and financing; marketing and financial management; and, exploring new markets.
The 2022 Small Business Management Cohort includes:
- Breadwinner Cycles: (2323 N. Williams Avenue, Portland) Makes handmade, custom bicycles for people who love to ride every day. Each bike is one-of-a-kind, a unique expression of craftsmanship, quality, and beauty.
- Cool District: (618 NW Glisan St. Suite 205, Portland) Offers a full range of retail, event, pop-up, brand, and product marketing solutions, using the latest high-end visualization techniques to communicate inspiring brand visions, digital content, and marketing materials.
- Derek’s Shoe Repair: (515 SW Broadway #24, Portland) Provides quality shoe and leather repair along with friendly service to Portland locals and visitors alike. Offers a full range of services, including sole repairs, shoe shines and boot cleaning, handbag repair, and preventative care, among others.
- Eleni’s Kitchen: (Portland) Founder and manager, Eleni Woldeyes, shares the unique flavors and exotic aromas of Ethiopian foods with the world.
- Favela Brazilian Café: (5300 SE Foster Road, Portland) Cafe and inter-generational community gathering space that emphasizes Brazilian culture and human connection.
- Fernweh Food Company: (Portland) Offers thoughtfully produced & packaged dehydrated provisions to nourish the adventurer in all of us.
- Infinity Tattoo: (3316 N. Lombard Avenue, Portland) Started in 1993 by Amanda Myers, who apprenticed under the legendary Don Deaton from Sea Tramp Tattoo Company. For the next 25 years, Amanda and her husband Paul Zenk ran Infinity Tattoo to much acclaim and in 2018, they passed the torch to Richard Cuellar and Jessica Helmke.
- Logic Intelligence: (5193 NE Elam Young Pkwy, Ste D, Hillsboro) Provider of Information Technology consulting services that include a wide array of solutions for clients in a broad range of industries. Clients range from small businesses to enterprises in the top 100 of Fortune 500.
- Maid in Portland Eco-friendly Cleaning: (Portland) Specializes in residential and small commercial cleaning in the Portland area and is committed to providing highly thorough cleaning services while using only earth-friendly, non-toxic, and biodegradable cleaning products.
- Meals for Heels: (831 SE Salmon St. Portland) World’s only late-night meal delivery service that caters to sex workers and sex-positive clientele. Offers nutritious, punctual, and professional food delivery service in “the strip club capital of America.”
- Newks Hot Sauce: (Portland) Offers a variety of all-natural hot sauces that are made in Portland, OR and are vegan and gluten-free.
- Rachel Sobczak – Orthopedic & TMJ Physical Therapy Center: (9204 SE Mitchell Street, Portland) Professional physical therapy clinic whose team of physical therapists are dedicated to restoring your body to wellness.
- Rena Ann: (Portland) Luxurious skincare company with a focus on natural ingredients at an affordable price. Skincare formulas are plant-based and science-backed.
- Road to Tibet Imports: (3335 SE Hawthorne Blvd., Portland) Offers an eclectic selection of items perfect for someone who appreciates fine things with a distinct, uniqueness not found just anywhere.
- Rock Dojo: (Portland) Award-winning online guitar program for kids that doesn’t just teach kids about the guitar; they teach kids how to rock out on the guitar! Helps students set goals, establish practice routines, and build momentum through martial arts-inspired belt system.
- Sacred Fire Creative: (5331 SW Macadam Avenue, Ste 258-533, Portland) BRANDING | DESIGN | MARKETING. For visionary leaders who are making a sustainable positive impact on the world.
- Sana Integrative Acupuncture: (15630 Boones Ferry Rd, Suite 6, Lake Oswego) Helps people live and function at their highest potential with the support of acupuncture and Chinese medicine therapies.
- Settlemier’s Award Jackets: (4929 NE Fremont Street, Portland) Making the highest quality varsity-style products in Portland, OR for more than 25 years.
- Shoebox by Ki (Portland) Clothing boutique committed to making each customer feel and look their best with personally curated pieces. Offers a range of styles that can be mixed and matched for that perfect outfit.
- Sissy Moon Ceramics: (P.O. Box 10893, Portland) Transforms the magical art of clay into ceramic treasures for all to love.
- The Vital Compass: (5412 N. Williams Avenue, Portland) An anchoring force for the clinical application of Traditional East Asian Medicine. Provides informed health care, medicinals, and education to a broad spectrum of society including both patients and medical professionals.
- Winding Willow Acupuncture: (1540 SE Clinton Street, Portland) Neighborhood collective of independent healing arts practitioners. Services include Acupuncture, Herbal Consults, Massage Therapy, Intuitive Therapy, Reiki…and much more.
If you would like more information about this topic or to learn more about the program,
please contact Rebecca McCulloch at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Small Business Development Center at Portland Community College: Our center has helped thousands of business owners in the Portland, OR metro region over the last 35+ years. We combine one-on-one business advising with training programs taught by business experts, giving small business clients the resources they need to grow. We’ve celebrated many successes with clients at all stages of business development. We encourage you to attend our no-cost Intro to SBDC orientation to discover educational opportunities and to create a plan for action to guide your business journey.
Bank of America: At Bank of America, we’re guided by a common purpose to help make financial lives better, through the power of every connection. We’re delivering on this through responsible growth with a focus on our environmental, social, and governance (ESG) leadership. ESG is embedded across our eight lines of business and reflects how we help fuel the global economy, build trust and credibility, and represent a company that people want to work for, invest in, and do business with. It’s demonstrated in the inclusive and supportive workplace we create for our employees, the responsible products and services we offer our clients, and the impact we make around the world in helping local economies thrive. An important part of this work is forming strong partnerships with nonprofits and advocacy groups, such as community, consumer, and environmental organizations, to bring together our collective networks and expertise to achieve greater impact.
Portland Business Alliance: The Portland region’s small businesses are a critical part of the economy, drive the region’s entrepreneurial innovation and make up approximately 80 percent of the Alliance’s membership. the alliance works to enhance and improve the small business and entrepreneurial community in Portland by providing business education programs, opportunities for relationship building, and offering access to resources to help small business owners thrive.
Senior Director, Strategic Communications
Portland Business Alliance