Small Business Administration Seeks Houston LGBTQ Success Stories for Pride Month

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From staff reports

The U.S. Small Business Administration is seeking LGBTQ business owners and entrepreneurs in Houston to highlight during Pride Month in June.

“My desire is to write 21 SBA Success Stories for the U.S. Small Business Administration (one for every workday in June) that will pay tribute to small business owners in the LGBTQ Community who in some way have benefitted from SBA Assistance,” writes Ann Renay Highsmith, an economic development support specialist in SBA’s Houston District office.

Below are some guidelines from Highsmith for submitting stories, which can be sent to [email protected]. For questions, call 713-773-6509.

SBA SUCCESS STORY CHECKLIST

Stories should answer the following questions and contain the following information.

PIOs can use this list as a CHECK LIST. All boxes should be checked.

____Who is the story about?

____full name – correct spelling

____title

____business name

____street address

____city

____state and zip

____business phone, fax and e-mail address

____What are they doing?

____How did they do it?

____When did they do it?

____Where did they do it?

____How long have they been in business?

____How many people does the business employ? Is there an increase from when the business began? Why?

____How were they helped by the SBA?

____What program area helped them?

____Who in the program area helped them and how?

____(if applicable and positive…)Has the business experienced an increase in the revenue? How and why?

____Why would a publication be interested in this story? What is the “news hook”…do they have a unique product? Have they filled a niche market? Do they offer interesting employee benefits? What small business success have they experienced that is of interest to the public? Does it show Innovative management? Has it made significant contributions to the community?

____(If about an SBA Award Winner:) Please include ALL the information on which the winner was judged.

____This story supports the following other goals of the district office besides the Success Story goal:_____________________________________

(Examples: brand management goal; an event goal; etc.)

WRITING GUIDELINES TO MAKE AN SBA SUCCESS STORY SUCCESSFUL

  • Always include where to get more information about SBA programs and services.
  • If possible, include an anecdote or two about the owner(s), industry or location (tell a story, describe a problem they have overcome or an opportunity seized).
  • Quotes are always good (from the small business owner, the SBA RA, DD or an SBA program expert, a subject matter expert, or the SBA person cited in the story who has helped them.)

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John Wright

John Wright is the editor of OutSmart magazine. He has spent two decades in the mainstream and LGBTQ media. Most recently, he served as senior editor of Dallas Voice, and covered LGBTQ issues in the state Legislature for The Texas Observer. Born and raised in Philadelphia, Wright earned his bachelor's degree in journalism from the University of Florida. He resides in the EaDo area of Houston, where he is currently remodeling a 1930s row house.
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