Apply by April 4 for course to accelerate small business development

HONOLULU – The U.S. Small Business Administration has launched recruitment for the 2017 Emerging Leaders Initiative, a seven-month executive-level training series targeting small businesses with high-growth potential and the entrepreneurial drive to follow through with their new skills and planning tools. For the seventh consecutive year, the Hawaii District Office will offer this valuable course at no cost to fifteen qualified entrepreneurs.

“Emerging Leader graduates represent the amazing range of diversity, talent and experience that we find among entrepreneurs in Hawaii and this course really focuses in on tools for their success. We’ve had bakers, builders, electricians, healthcare executives, IT professionals, designers, retailers, agri-tourism, architects and engineers join the course and all find that they are truly engaged and excited about it,” said District Director Jane Sawyer. “Though the class meets every other week in Honolulu, we’ve had business owners fly in from all the neighbor islands to participate. Several cohorts also continue to meet and consult with their executive peer groups years after completing the initiative.”

The SBA’s Emerging Leaders Initiative delivers entrepreneurship education and training focused on small, poised-for-growth companies that are potential job creators. This intensive executive entrepreneurship series includes nearly 100 hours of classroom time for each CEO, provides the interaction and consultation with experienced coaches, mentors, and lenders, facilitated exercises, and focused networking with their peers, local city leaders and the financial community. Classes are scheduled to begin in mid-April.

To be eligible for the course, the CEO or owner must have been in business for three years, have annual revenues over $350,000, have at least one employee on staff, and have the desire and potential for growth. The application process includes completing a one page form, personal interviews with the facilitator and director, and the commitment to complete course work and participate in all class sessions. It is a competitive selection process. Applications are due to SBA by April 4, 2017. For information, call 808 541 2990 or email

Emerging Leaders Initiative has trained more than 4,000 small business owners since 2008, and continues to be a catalyst for expanded opportunities. Emerging Leaders graduates reported that nearly 70 percent achieved significant revenue growth and over 80 percent created new jobs or retained all existing jobs. Graduates also secured federal, state, local and tribal contract awards of over $700 million.


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