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NEWS RELEASE: 18 Small Business Owners Graduate from SBA Emerging Leaders

Michigan Business Network
November 27, 2019 11:00 AM

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Seven-month program provides growth framework for up-and-coming Michigan small businesses

DETROIT – Eighteen small business owners from Michigan will graduate November 6 from the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Emerging Leaders program, an executive-level training initiative for local businesses on the brink of growth.

This is the eleventh year the SBA Michigan District provided the intensive seven-month education series. Many participants have made significant changes in their business during the program including, gaining new contracts, hiring employees, gaining a deeper understanding of their financial information.

The program includes approximately 100 hours of classroom time, connects small business owners with a network of industry experts and peers, and supports the creation of a three-year strategic growth action plan.

“For every $200 the SBA invests in Emerging Leaders, a new job is created,” SBA Great Lakes Regional Administrator Rob Scott said. “Many entrepreneurs know where they want to take their business but often get stuck on how to get there. SBA’s Emerging Leaders initiative proves a few tools and a strong support network can be the catalysts entrepreneurs need to take their business to a new level.”

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Since 2008 when the SBA started offering the Emerging Leaders initiative in cities across the country, its more than 5,000 graduates have created approximately 6,500 jobs, accessed millions of dollars in new financing, and secured more than $3.16 billion in federal government contracts. 

“The Emerging Leaders Initiative is a SBA program that I am committed to as its impact on the economy of Michigan has been a driving force to the revitalization of the comeback story of our state,” said SBA Michigan District Director Constance Logan. “Over the past 11 years, many of our graduates have gone on to expand their work force, increase sales, and obtain millions of dollars in government contracts using tools from the program. I look forward to seeing our 2019 graduates do the same.”

The 2019 Detroit Emerging Leaders graduates are located primarily in Detroit, and nearby suburbs, with two graduates from Saginaw County. The businesses represent a wide variety of industries including Construction, Manufacturing, Educational Services, Insurance, Health Care, Telecommunications, Printing and Media, Security, Recruiting/Staffing, Logistics, Cleaning Services, Car Wash and Hospitality.

“The Emerging Leaders program has supported my development and improved my business acumen, specifically, focusing my attention and time on strategic partners, Resolute’s business financials, identification of market segmentation and client retention,” said Phillip Caldwell II, founder and president of Resolute Educational Solutions. “The peer CEO Mentoring group style of the SBA Emerging Leaders program provided me the best benefit as it was an opportunity for shared experiences in a variety of areas including delegating, industry specific market segmentation, and marketing particularly social media.”

SBA’s 2019 Detroit Emerging Leaders class graduates are:


Phillip Caldwell II - Resolute Educational Solutions, LLC

Christopher and Kim Casteel - Anew Life

Cherri Harris - Swint Logistics Group, Inc.

Cathy Heinrich - City Shield, LLC

Tekisha Lee – DiverseNote

Pamela Mack - The STEM Learning Group, LLC


Dominick Gray - Center Communications, Inc.

Elizabeth Mays - Mays Multi Media


Paul McEachren - Rival Insulation

Peggy Uzzle – Peggy Uzzle Agency

Bay City: 

Lyndsay Edmonds - Harless and Hugh and Public House


Joel Soelberg – Jetool


Ali Turfe - Westborn Car Wash


Josh Barney - J.J. Barney Construction, Inc.

Shelby Twp.: 

Dawn and John Winter - Dawn to Dusk Cleaning Service

Sterling Heights: 

Sandra Fouts - Molding Concepts

Walled Lake: 

John Smith - Great Lakes Segway

West Bloomfield: 

Lisa VanWyk - Step Up Recruiting

Executives of small businesses poised for growth in emerging markets interested in learning more regarding eligibility and how to apply for the 2020 class should visit www.sba.gov/EmergingLeaders for more information.


About the U.S. Small Business Administration
The U.S. Small Business Administration makes the American dream of business ownership a reality.  As the only go-to resource and voice for small businesses backed by the strength of the federal government, the SBA empowers entrepreneurs and small business owners with the resources and support they need to start, grow or expand their businesses, or recover from a declared disaster.

It delivers services through an extensive network of SBA field offices and partnerships with public and private organizations. To learn more, visit www.sba.gov.

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