Small Business Exporter of the Year – 2016

The SBA will make Small Business Exporter of the Year awards to eligible small businesses at the State level (from each of the 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and Guam) and the National level to small business owners who represent the nation’s strong entrepreneurial spirit and rich diversity. In those states served by more than one SBA district office, each district office will select a district level winner and the State winner will be selected at the regional level. The National Small Business Exporter of the Year will be selected from the regional level winners.

Who is eligible to be nominated for this award?

Any individual who owns and operates or who bears principal responsibility for operating a small business that is engaged in exporting may be nominated. Partners who jointly own and operate a small business may be nominated as a “team,” so long as the number of individuals in the team nomination does not exceed four. A nominee for Small Business Exporter of the Year must own or operate a business defined as “small” for its primary industry under the applicable SBA size standards. Individuals who have received the Small Business Person Award or Exporter Award at the State level within the past five years are not eligible. Elected officials are not eligible. Nominees must also be residents of the United States or its territories. Nominees will be subject to background checks. Small businesses owned and operated by nominees must comply with federal civil rights laws. While receipt of SBA assistance is not required, it is preferred. Consult your nearest SBA district office if you have questions.

Who may submit nominations for this award?

Any individual or organization dedicated to the support of the small business community in the United States, including, but not limited to, trade and professional associations and business organizations, may submit nominations for the Small Business Exporter of the Year award. Individuals may also self-nominate. Individuals may not be nominated for more than one National Small Business Week 2016 award category. SBA employees may help to solicit nominations, but they cannot submit nominations on behalf of the nominee.

Where are the nominations to be sent?

Nominations must be submitted in one of two ways:

1) Nominations may be submitted to the U.S. Small Business Administration district office in the state or territory where the nominee is located; or 2) Nominations may be submitted via the online nominations portal on http://awards.sba.gov.

What is the deadline for nominations?

All nominations for Small Business Exporter of the Year submitted to the U.S. Small Business Administration district office in the state or territory where the nominee is located must be postmarked or hand delivered to the appropriate SBA District Office no later than 3:00pm ET, January 11, 2016. All nominations submitted through the online nominations portal must be uploaded and submitted no later than 3:00pm ET, January 11, 2016.

What information must the nomination package contain?

Nominations must contain the information required below. Incomplete nomination packages will not be considered. All evaluation/selection criteria must be specifically addressed.

1. A completed background form (SBA Form 3300, Award Nominee Background Form) which is available through SBA district offices and the online nominations portal. For “team” nominations, a background form is required for each team member;

2. A completed nomination form (SBA Form 3302, Small Business Exporter of the Year) which is available through SBA district offices and the online nominations portal;

3. An original 8” x 10” or 5” x 7” photo of the nominee or a digital photo – at least 300 dpi is required; photocopies are not acceptable. For “team” nominations, a photo of each nominee or group photo is acceptable;

4. Additional supporting documentation deemed significant by the nominator, including news clips, letters of recommendation, nomination letter (if not self-nominated) and other evidence of the appropriateness of the nomination (supporting documentation must not exceed 10 pages). Videos will not be considered.

What are the evaluation/selection criteria for the Exporter of the Year award?

In evaluating the nomination packages for the Exporter of the Year award, the judges will use the following criteria:

1) Increased sales, profits and/or growth of employment because of exporting.

2) Creative overseas marketing strategies.

3) Effective solutions to export-related problems, including trade financing, payment, and currency issues; market-entry and logistical challenges; cultural differences, etc.

4) Demonstrated encouragement of other small businesses to export.

5) Volunteer assistance to other small businesses entering the export market.

6) Cooperation with other businesses in the creation of export trading companies and/or introduction of unique trading relationships, products or services.

What are the selection procedures for this award?

SBA will make Small Business Exporter of the Year awards to eligible small businesses at the District, Regional, and National levels.

Winners at each level will be selected by a panel of judges that may be comprised of both SBA employees and non-Federal employees. The National Exporter of the Year will be selected by the SBA Administrator based on, but not restricted to, the recommendations of the panel of judges of federal employees. Non-federal employees serving as judges must sign a conflict of interest/non-disclosure certification.

Other SBA Awards

SBA is currently seeking nominations from the public for exceptional entrepreneurs. You can use this online portal to submit your nomination for the following awards:

  • * Small Business Person of the Year Awards
  • * Small Business Exporter of the Year
  • * Phoenix Award for Small Business Disaster Recovery
  • * Phoenix Award for Outstanding Contributions to Disaster Recovery
  • * Women’s Business Center of Excellence Award
  • * Veteran Business Outreach Center Excellence in Service Award
  • * Federal Procurement Award- Small Business Prime Contractor of the Year Award
  • * Federal Procurement Award- Small Business Subcontractor of the Year Award
  • * Federal Procurement Award- Dwight D. Eisenhower Award for Excellence
  • * 8(a) Graduate of the Year Award
  • * Small Business Development Center Excellence and Innovation Award
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