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Small Business Disaster Recovery and Resilience

The fires raging up and down the state have proved devastating to many communities and has forced evacuations. Our thoughts go out to our colleagues in Redding and Mendocino.

After last year’s fire season and the start of this year’s, we’re living in a new normal. Fires and other disasters (earthquakes, floods, etc.) have a profound effect on local businesses. After reaching out to those affected, they are looking for contacts to agencies/organizations who might provide resources such as microloans to businesses.

Don’t wait until it’s too late, prepare now. To help you do that we’re gathering a panel of disaster program experts and CAMEO members that have had to respond to “Declared Disasters” on how to deliver the appropriate services.

About the Presenters

Elizabeth Mattiuzzi is a Senior Researcher in Community Development at the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco. Her research focuses on regional transportation and housing governance, equity, and economic opportunity. She previously led the Planning Sustainable Regions research initiative and contributed to the Planning for Jobs project at the Center for Community Innovation at the University of California, Berkeley. Elizabeth completed her Ph.D. in City and Regional Planning at UC Berkeley.

Each borrower has a unique story and understanding their story is one of the reasons Ryan enjoys his job. As the son of small business owners, Ryan Richardson understands the importance and role of small businesses in the community. He is grateful for being able to have a job blending helping others with his interest in business. Ryan takes a tremendous amount of pride driving around town seeing businesses he helped finance. For over a decade Ryan has been promoting, underwriting and servicing loans for SCED’s economic development lending programs. He has MBA, is a certified Economic Development Finance Professional, and a graduate of Leadership Redding.

Leah Abate is a solutions and mission-driven program manager with over 11 years experience in the entrepreneurial sector. As Program Manager and Women’s Business Center Director for non-profit Women’s Economic Ventures (WEV), she led and developed teams in delivering impactful programming for women entrepreneurs. Following the Thomas Fire and 1/9 Debris Flow in Santa Barbara and Ventura Counties, she served as project manager for WEV’s disaster recovery efforts. Leah holds a Bachelor’s Degree from the University of California, Santa Barbara, and currently resides in Sacramento.

Cynthia Cowell is a Public Information Officer with the U.S. Small Business Administration, Office of Disaster Assistance. She has been with the SBA since 2005.