From left to right: Lee Evans; Victoria Peake; Dr. Tom O'Neal; Tony Espinosa; and Kellie Snaith.
From left to right: Lee Evans; Victoria Peake; Dr. Tom O’Neal; Tony Espinosa; and Kellie Snaith.

Staff, volunteers and resource partners for the Small Business Development Center (SBDC) at UCF in the College of Business Administration were honored at the recent Florida Small Business Development Center Network’s 2009 Performance Excellence Awards Ceremony. In total, the SBDC at UCF received seven awards.

The SBDC at UCF Performance Excellence Award winners include:

Florida Innovative Program and Best Practice Award—The SBDC at UCF’s Advisory Board Council (ABC) Program received this award in recognition for its significant contribution to program improvement through innovative thinking, creativity, resourcefulness and determination. The ABC program is sponsored by Orange County Government and is an all-volunteer operation offering free advisory boards to qualified companies. The cumulative impact from the ABC program’s reporting company clients since its inception in 2001 includes more than $48 million increase in revenues, 255 jobs created, 829 jobs retained, more than $11 million in capital formation and more than $28 million in contract awarded. In addition to this award, the SBDC at UCF, the ABC program and current ABC client Cheryl Stockstad were recognized at the opening luncheon of the ASBDC’s Conference by the Honorable Karen Gordon Mills, U.S. Small Business Administrator. Mills’ applauded the SBDC at UCF and the ABC program for its contribution to small business growth and recognized Stockstad’s company for its 500% revenue growth since starting the program.

Florida Volunteer of the Year AwardLee Evans, nominated by the SBDC at UCF, was recognized as the volunteer that made the greatest contribution to the FSBDCN. Evans, after a 35-year career in government contracting, has volunteered for the SBDC at UCF’s ABC program for the past three years, contributing a total of 220 hours to the program—a market value of $47,250 in consulting services. Evans also received the Regional Volunteer of the Year Award for Central Florida.

Network Service Excellence AwardVictoria Peake, director of the SBDC at Brevard Community College, was recognized as the FSBDCN employee that made outstanding contribution to his/her clients. During her years of service to the Network, Peake created the first annual Women’s Business Conference and the annual Veterans Conference. She serves as the vice-chair of the BW Simpkins Business Seminar for Entrepreneurial Development and has partnered with various organizations to develop the first Minority Vendor Expo and VETNET of Central Florida. The SBDC at BCC is one of six sub-centers of the SBDC at UCF.

Regional Outstanding Resource Partner AwardDr. Tom O’Neal, UCF Associate Vice President for Research & Commercialization and Director of UCF’s Business Incubation Program, was recognized for his continuous support of the SBDC at UCF including a new partnership that has resulted in a shared staff position that serves half-time as the SBDC area manager for the SBDC at UCF in Leesburg and half-time as the UCF Leesburg Business Incubator site manager. O’Neal played an important role in establishing and funding this partnership.

Regional Certified Business Analyst (CBA) of the Year Award—The SBDC at UCF’s procurement specialist Tony Espinosa was recognized for demonstrating the greatest enhancement of scope, quality and/or impact of counseling services. Since starting with the SBDC in 2007, Espinosa has established the center’s Procurement Technical Assistance Center (PTAC) program across Central Florida. Over the past two years, Espinosa has assisted small businesses with over $36 million in federal government contracts and subcontracts, and $1.5 million in local and state government contracts.

Regional Employee of the Year Award—The SBDC at UCF’s Kellie Snaith was recognized for the greatest contribution to the operations or special projects for the region. Serving as the center’s marketing director and program manager since 2006, Snaith has focused her efforts on enhancing the center’s marketing and public relations. She is responsible for overseeing the redevelopment of the center’s and the ABC’s websites, marketing collateral and increasing the center’s public relations initiatives. In addition, Snaith manages the Small Business Resource Network program and the “Next-Level Growth” workshop series for the center.

For more information, visit the SBDC Web site.