State’s Small Business Development Center earns national accreditation
CHARLESTON, WV — The West Virginia Small Business Development Center (WV SBDC) has earned full accreditation from the Association of Small Business Development Centers. Federal statutes mandate the accreditation review once every five years to continue program eligibility and funding.
America’s SBDC is the national accrediting body for Small Business Development Centers under contract from the U.S. Small Business Administration.
“The goal of accreditation is the long-term continuous improvement of the organization,” said WV SBDC State Director Debra Martin. “Earning the accreditation also assures our clients and partners of the tremendous value of our professional services. No other publicly-funded program undergoes the accountability examinations that SBDCs experience to confirm our management strength, financial accountability and economic impact.”
In July 2021, the America’s SBDC team conducted in-depth reviews of the WV SBDC’s staff, programs, performance and other relevant factors. On Sept. 17, the committee voted to accept the team’s recommendation to accredit the WV SBDC with no conditions.
“Congratulations on the significant milestone,” wrote ASBDC Accreditation Committee Chair Jody Keenan in her letter announcing the review results. “Considerable planning and effort have gone into attaining the goal of full accreditation and the West Virginia SBDC Network is commended for its success.”
The previous audit was conducted in October 2015. The next review is scheduled for the year 2026.
A division of the West Virginia Department of Economic Development, WV SBDC helps the state’s entrepreneurs to start, improve or grow a business. WV SBDC serves all 55 counties through a network of centers distributed across the state. The centers are staffed with WV SBDC business coaches, many of whom have been entrepreneurs themselves. The business coaches provide confidential one-on-one guidance at no cost in areas such as exporting, innovation, technology and economic development, finance, management, cybersecurity, and marketing.
WV SBDC service initiatives include the Innovation-Technology program, which focuses on small technology-driven businesses. The WV SBDC is also a founding member of West Virginia BusinessLink, a one-stop, online location for resources in the state available to entrepreneurs and business owners.