Coachella Valley SBDC | 2014 Small Business Development Center Excellence & Innovation
Center helps clients start 10 new businesses, create 110 new jobs, retain 43 existing jobs, and obtain $7.3 million in financing
The U.S. Small Business Administration has awarded Coachella Valley Small Business Development Center (CVSBDC) its 2014 Small Business Development Center Excellence & Innovation Award for growing from a satellite center to a full service center, building and maintaining an effective team, and encouraging access to capital for its clients.
In 2012, the Coachella Valley SBDC expanded to a full service center from a satellite office of the Inland Empire SBDC. To make this transition, Ezekiel Bonillas, a life-long resident of the Coachella Valley, was brought on board as director. Bonillas, who has an MBA in Entrepreneurial Management along with two Bachelor degrees from California State University, San Bernardino, worked hard to build and maintain relationships with the Coachella Valley small business community.
Since establishing CVSBDC as a full service center, Bonillas has built and maintained a team of staff members that are effective, efficient, and conscientious of their role in the business community. Network staff members are surveyed annually regarding their professional development needs and job satisfaction and continue to report high levels. According to Business Consultant Kyle Wagner,
“Zeke empowers us to do our best work. He is a tremendous leader and mentor who provides consultants/staff with the tools we need to be successful and impactful in the community.”
Bonillas, who came to the SBDC with a background in banking, has been successful in facilitating access to capital for center clients. In 2013, Bonillas led the center to assist clients to start 10 new businesses, create 110 new jobs, retain 43 existing jobs, and obtain $7.3 million in debt and equity financing.
“Small Business Development Centers serve as a great example of what public/private partnerships can achieve. By leveraging federal funds, state and local government funds, and private sector resources, SBDC’s are able to provide valuable technical assistance to small businesses and aspiring entrepreneurs. Under Ezekiel’s leadership, the Coachella Valley SBDC has grown from a satellite office to its own Center while making positive economic impact in the community he serves. We’re pleased to present him with this award,” said J. Adalberto Quijada, District Director for the SBA’s Santa Ana District Office.
Every year since 1963, the President of the United States has issued a proclamation announcing National Small Business Week, in order to recognize the critical contributions of America’s entrepreneurs and small business owners. As part of National Small Business Week, SBA takes the opportunity to highlight their impact, working to grow small businesses, create 21st century jobs, drive innovation, and increase America’s global competitiveness.
The Coachella Valley SBDC is located at 3111 E. Tahquitz Canyon Way, Palm Springs, CA 92262. It provides practical assistance and services to small businesses such as consulting, business education, and supporting services. The Coachella Valley SBDC is part of the Orange County/Inland Empire SBDC Network and is funded in part through a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), California State University, Fullerton, and the Coachella Valley Economic Partnership and its services are extended to the public on a non-discriminatory basis.