SBAC 2013 Press Kit Advocacy, Networking, Cost-Savings and Educational Resources for Small Businesses

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1 SBAC 2013 Press Kit Advocacy, Networking, Cost-Savings and Educational Resources for Small Businesses

2 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Media Contact: Interview Contact: Elliot Richardson, CEO Small Business Advocacy Council (SBAC) Provides Support For Small to Mid-Sized Businesses Advocacy, Networking, Educational Resources and more for Small Businesses Chicago, IL (September 30, 2011) As owners of small businesses try to navigate the precarious nature of the economic landscape, it seems as though they face an uphill battle. Dealing with rising health care costs and excessive fees can be frustrating. Acquiring proper funding can be difficult. Feeling isolated as an entrepreneur can be overwhelming. Elliot Richardson, an attorney since 1998, became frustrated with this uphill battle many owners of small- to mid-sized businesses were experiencing. He felt that they had no voice, no representation in regard to lawmaking. As an owner of a small law firm himself, Richardson wanted to be a part of the solution. Equipped with his background ranging from civil rights to commercial litigation, he chose to launch an organization that would provide support for these owners in every area necessary. The Small Business Advocacy Council (SBAC) was born out of a desire to empower the small business community and provide a unified voice for small and midmarket businesses. The SBAC supports its members in three distinct ways. It advocates for its members in the arena of lawmaking and policy. The SBAC provides support programs, including strategic partnerships which provide members with discounted products and services to reduce overhead costs and connect small businesses with funding options. The SBAC also connects owners of small- to midsized businesses with other members in order to generate mutually beneficial relationships. The SBAC played an instrumental role in passing legislation that allows small business better access to state contacts. The SBAC also helped draft legislation that provides for an Illinois health insurance cooperative. The SBAC has co-branded a credit card that provides small business owners the consumer protections afforded to other consumer credit cards. Currently, the SBAC is fighting to lower Illinois excessively high LLC fees. The SBAC currently has nearly 800 members, and has been experiencing steady growth, attracting approximately 40 new members each month. The SBAC is dedicated to improving economic conditions for small- to mid-sized businesses and being a voice for small business. About Small Business Advocacy Council The SBAC is a non-partisan, member driven organization that promotes the success of small business through political advocacy, networking, support services and educational programs. For more information, visit sbacil.org. # # #

3 FACTSHEET COMPANY: Small Business Advocacy Council CONTACT: 20 S Clark St, Suite 500, Chicago, IL (phone) (fax) PRINCIPALS: MISSION: Elliot Richardson, CEO & Past President Blanca Campos, Advocacy Director Stephanie Nommensen, Membership Director The SBAC is a non-partisan, member driven organization that promotes the success of small business through political advocacy, networking, support services and educational programs. MEMBERSHIP: The SBAC has nearly 800 members, and continues to attract approximately 40 new business members per month. ADVOCACY: VISION: SERVICES: Small Business Contracts Act: Setting 10% state procurement goal for small business contracts Health Benefit Purchasing Coop for Small Businesses: Resulting in authorization and funding of state s first healthcare cooperative Lowering excessive LLC Fees: Fighting to reduce the state s LLC fees some of the highest fees in the nation Bringing transparency and accountability to Edge Tax Credits Ensuring that tax breaks awarded to companies threatening to leave Illinois are awarded in a transparent and prudent manner Co-Branded Credit Card Offering a credit card providing consumer protections small businesses deserve 1. To bring small business owners, their employees and hard-working Americans together for the purpose of forming a powerful and cohesive advocacy group 2. To support legislation and policies favorable to small business community. 3. To support members by helping them make meaningful connections and generate referrals. 4. To create strategic partnerships between SBAC members that bring down their costs of doing business and strengthen the SBAC community. Advocacy Networking (60 events per month across the Chicagoland area) Cost-Savings Programs SBAC Connects (connecting businesses with capital and resources) Educational Resources and Professional Development Promotional Opportunities Office Sharing Peer Groups Professional Development

4 BIOS Elliot Richardson, CEO & Past President Elliot Richardson is a partner at the law firm of Korey, Cotter, Heather & Richardson, handling a variety of commercial litigation matters in both federal and state court. Prior to running for Congress in Illinois' 10th District, Elliot's practice included civil rights litigation. Specifically, he represented client's whose constitutional rights were violated. Elliot has been involved in community service since his college days at Bradley University. Presently, Elliot serves on the Board of Directors for Childserv, a large and successful organization focused on helping at-risk children. Elliot is co-chair of the resource development committee of this organization. Elliot is also on the board of Youth Conservation Corp., a dynamic non-profit which provides training in the construction industry to at-risk children. Elliot formerly served on the Board of Directors for Youth Communications, an organization that empowers children by teaching them crucial writing skills. He also served on the Editorial Board of the Chicago Bar Association and on the executive committee of the Young Lawyers Section of the CBA. Elliot also served on the board of the YMCA Alliance Board. Elliot received his law degree from the University of Dayton. In law school, he was the member of the Public Interest Law Organization and received the University of Dayton School of Law Pro Bono Publico Service Award. Elliot graduated from Bradley University with a degree in sociology and criminal justice. He obtained a minor in history. Mike Cavanaugh, Board President Mike Cavanaugh is a principal with RCM Wealth Advisors and the co-founder and President of the SBAC. Advisor. As a broker and floor trader on the floor of the Chicago Board of Trade, Mike started his career providing market insight to clients from the wheat and bond pits. Later, Mike brokered futures and options on futures for individual clients and professional investors off the floor. From there, Mike founded Know Your Options, a Registered Investment Mike has had articles published in The Wall Street Journal, Registered Rep Magazine, OIC Whitepaper, Investment News, Journal of Financial Planning, and dozens of others. Mike is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin at Madison.

5 BIOS Amy began her career in the General Assembly working for Illinois House Speaker Michael J. Madigan, and earned her stripes in Illinois politics as a campaign manager for state legislative and Congressional campaigns. She also contributed to marketing and development of the GIS voter tracking app used successfully in multiple states. Amy developed communications marketing programs for the Laborers International Union Midwest Region and the Chicago Bar Foundation, and led public affairs and web marketing initiatives for the Chicago Bar Association. She also created her own graphic design and marketing firm in 2002, AM Creative, serving political candidates, non-for-profit groups and small businesses. Amy was appointed by the Illinois Governor to serve as Chairman of the Illinois Workers Compensation Commission, overseeing the state s workers compensation court system and has eight years of public administration experience. While at the Commission, Amy managed a $38M budget, chaired four advisory boards represented by labor, business, medical provider and public sector leaders statewide, and led technology-based improvements including implementation of a case file bar code tracking system. Amy serves on the Chicago Bar Foundation Advocacy Committee and has a Six Sigma Green Belt and Project Management Professional (PMP) certification. Blanca Campos, Advocacy Director Blanca Campos received her Bachelor s in Political Science from Rockford College and her Master s of Public Administration, with a concentration in Public Management, from the School of Public Service at DePaul University. As part of her academic development, Blanca took courses in Spain, Ireland, China, and India. Prior to working for the Small Business Advocacy Council, she worked as a Community Outreach Liaison for Elliot Richardson s Congressional Campaign and as a Litigation Paralegal for Botto Gilbert Schottland & Andrle, PC. As a daughter of a small business owner and former co-owner of the family business, she has first-hand knowledge of the challenges facing small-scale entrepreneurs. Blanca is passionate about small business and understands the impact of small business on the stability and advancement of communities. Presently, her role at the Council will provide her the opportunity to support and advocate for small business owners throughout all levels of government. Stephanie Nommensen, Membership Director Growing up with a family-owned business, Stephanie has first-hand knowledge about what small businesses need to thrive. Stephanie s upbringing provides the opportunity to appreciate the intricacy of business, its challenges and its rewards. Stephanie s experience ranges from hiring and training employees and overseeing inventory and scheduling, to the overall management of the company. A recent graduate with a B.S. in Managerial Studies Management from the University of Illinois Chicago, Stephanie manages the membership program for the SBAC, focusing on membership retention and recruitment and overseeing mini-meetings and membership programs. Stephanie enjoys networking with a wide variety of people and expanding her knowledge through their expertise.

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