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South Dakota District Office  

u s small business administration

SBA South Dakota celebrates Black History Month with Ametrea Christion, Emerging Leaders Graduate

Ametrea Christion

SBA SD District Director Jaime Wood (far right) and SBDC Director Slade (second from right)  visited Ametrea Christion (third from right) and staff of Wildflower Academy in 2021. During the visit, they discussed the benefit of SBA guaranteed lending as a tool to achieve business growth.


Ametrea Christion is a third generation Black-woman small business owner in Sioux Falls.  After spending a 20-year career as a respiratory therapist at a Sioux Falls pediatric hospital and having special needs children of her own with autism and ADHD, Ametrea and her spouse – also a small business owner in the trucking industry – realized they needed specialized care where their children would feel safe and accepted. Ametrea took the leap into small business ownership in 2019, leased space, and started Wildflower Academy where her own children and others including at risk children could thrive.  Ametrea and her staff of over 10 employees provided care for up to 70 children and she credits SBA resource partners — the local Small Business Development Center and SD CEO East Women’s Business Center — for guidance in her business journey.

Ametrea is a 2021 SBA SD Emerging Leaders Cohort graduate and also leverages the new SBA Ascent Dashboard tool for woman business owners to increase business knowledge.  During the pandemic she relied on SBA disaster funding to keep operations flowing. Due to an expiring lease and increased demand for childcare, Ametrea made another recent leap to grow the business and is in the process of relocating Wildflower Academy to a larger facility to increase capacity to serve more families and provide more jobs.  She currently serves on the Advisory Committee for SD CEO East Women’s Business Center (WBC).

Ametrea joined SBA SD District Director Jaime Wood and Radio Host Bill Zortman for an interview on KELO AM 1320 Radio “It’s Your Business/Agribusiness” this week to talk about her business ownership experiences. Click on the February 23, 2022, 10:00 AM show to listen (interview starts at 8:06): http://ow.ly/6N5050I3FTJ


South Dakota District Office Presents Leadership in Lending Awards

The U.S. Small Business Administration South Dakota District Office honored four lenders for their commitment to small businesses in the fiscal year ending September 30, 2021. 

“SBA’s lender relationships are among the most important tools we have to help small businesses start, grow, and succeed,” said Jaime Wood, SBA South Dakota District Director. “SBA guarantees the loans, but ultimately it is the banks, the credit unions, and the community-based lenders, who put capital in the hands of business owners. Those dollars power small businesses to provide more consumer products and services, jobs, expanded facilities, and to create better communities.” 

The SBA SD 2021 Leadership in Lending Awards recipients were:


bhcuFirst National Bank






“Fiscal Year 2021 was an active year for SBA guaranteed lending in the state,” said Wood.  “Approximately $182 million was made available to South Dakota businesses through the 504, 7(a), and Microloan programs.”  Wood noted high utilization with seven Certified Development Companies, forty-three 7(a) lenders, and one microlender participating in the SBA guaranteed lending programs.  

For more information on SBA guaranteed lending, visit: https://www.sba.gov/funding-programs


SBA Upcoming Events



Tuesday, March 1, 2022                                          9:00 – 10:00 AM CST

Learn how the Air Force meets their construction requirements with construction specific contracting vehicles – SABER; MACC and MATOC. Understand what these contracts are, how they are different and how you can be ready when they are open for new contractors.

Presented by —

Angie Klein, Director of Business Operations, Minot Air Force Base

Graham Pritchett, Director of Business Operations, Grand Forks Air Force Base

Bernard ‘Bernie’ Clemens, Director of Business Operations, Ellsworth Air Force Base

Register at: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/construction-contract-vehicles-tickets-214706120787




Wednesday, March 2, 2022                                    1:00 – 2:00 PM CST

Strong Business Credit – Demystified!

Credit Reporting for a Small Business provides an overview of credit reporting and is designed to help small business owners understand the importance of reporting their credit and how it may benefit their business.

Participants will gain an understanding of the following:

• How the personal and business credit reporting landscape relates to their business.

• What goes into the personal and business credit reports and scores used to assess credit profiles.

• How to establish and build strong personal and business credit histories to support the growth and sustainability of their business.

• How lenders and other businesses may use personal and business credit reports and scores to assess lending risk or evaluate other business-to-business opportunities.

• How the use of credit reporting services can help small business owners make sound decisions.

• How to leverage strong personal and business credit histories to obtain satisfactory financing terms.

• How to recognize when business and personal credit history may become a bigger factor in seeking larger financing options.

Register at: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/business-credit-demystified-sba-money-smart-series-tickets-211685114877


risk management


Wednesday, March 9, 2022                                     1:00 – 2:30 PM CST

Risk Management – Planning for the Unexpected (SBA Money Smart Series)

Risk Management is key for a Small Business to navigate the uncertainties of disasters, both manmade and natural and understand how risk management can benefit their business.

• Identify the common risks associated with a small business.

• Identify the external and internal factors which affect risk for a small business.

• Identify situations that may cause risk for a small business.

• Identify the common warning signs of risk for a small business.

• Implement, monitor, and evaluate a risk management plan for a small business.

Register at:  https://www.eventbrite.com/e/risk-management-planning-for-the-unexpected-sba-money-smart-series-tickets-211988402017


SBA Resource Partner Upcoming Events



Facts, stats, numbers, and charts… they’re all boring – unless they are growing! You need to determine what your Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) are in order to know if your marketing strategies are working. Here’s how you choose them based on your primary goal!

Join SD CEO West for this FREE live webinar on Wednesday, March 2, 10:30am – 12pm MST.

It will be taught via Zoom with the opportunity to ask questions throughout the presentation.  Register at: https://sdceo.ecenterdirect.com/events/1018555




Thursday, March 3, 2022                                  12:00 PM – 1:00 PM (CST)

Creating a business comes with several necessary decisions in unknown territories. The type of legal entity is one of them.

Join SD CEO East with expert attorney, Nicole Tupman, as she takes us on a journey of practical legal considerations for creating your entity and creating a solid legal structure. You’ll leave this webinar with a better understanding of LLCs, Inc.’s, P.Cs, and Partnerships. Plus you’ll have a chance to ask the expert LIVE any questions that have stumped you while trying to create the best path for you and your business.

More information at: https://sdceo.ecenterdirect.com/events/1018573.




Celebrate National Women’s History Month with SD CEO West at the “Providing Healing, Promoting Hope” Women In Networking (WIN) Breakfast on Tuesday, March 8th, 2022, from 8:30 AM – 10:00 AM at The Barn in Spearfish. Early networking and registration starts at 8:00 AM.

The 2022 Women’s History theme, “Providing Healing, Promoting Hope,” is both a tribute to the ceaseless work of caregivers and frontline workers during this ongoing pandemic and also a recognition of the thousands of ways that women of all cultures have provided both healing and hope throughout history. 

Women as healers harken back to ancient times. Healing is the personal experience of transcending suffering and transforming it to wholeness. The gift of hope spreads light to the lives of others and reflects a belief in the unlimited possibilities of this and future generations. Together, healing and hope are essential fuels for our dreams and our recovery. 

This year, in particular, we are reminded of the importance of healers and caregivers who are helping to promote and sustain hope for the future.  

Women have long advocated for compassionate treatments and new directions in public health and in women’s mental and physical health. Women have also historically led the way in mending divisions, healing wounds, and finding peaceful solutions. This timeless work, in so many ways and in addition to so many other tasks, has helped countless individuals in our communities recover and follow their dreams. 

The 2022 theme proudly honors those who, in both public and private life, provide healing and promote hope for the betterment of all. 

Registration and payment by Thursday, March 3 at midnight is required. Seating is limited. We will not be accepting walk-ins.

Early Bird Ticket Price: $30 (Before March 3rd) 

Regular Ticket Price: $35 (After March 3rd) 

Any questions about WIN or the breakfast, please call Carissa Hauck at 605.642.6948. 

Women In Networking (WIN) is an organization under the SD CEO West Women’s Business Center for women in business that provides an opportunity to widen their professional networks, promote their business or organization and network with other women.

WIN connects women, familiarizes participants with other businesses and/or upcoming events, and supports the SD CEO Women’s Business Center.

More information at:  https://sdceo.ecenterdirect.com/events/1018542




Join SD CEO East in a celebration of Women’s History Month with this EmpowHERment Panel on March 10, 2022, in Sioux Falls, SD, at the Museum of Visual Materials from 11:00 AM – 12:30 PM!

Women of the past have paved the way for the world we get to live in today. March is a month for celebrating those who have made history as well as those that are making a difference today. Let us gather to commemorate those who have gone before us, charge up from those impact creators of this era, as well as empower each other by joining to celebrate women of every walk of life of the now. Our EmpowHERment Panel of both entrepreneurs and intrapreneurs will leave you inspired and ready to conquer the rest of 2022 and beyond!

More information at: https://sdceo.ecenterdirect.com/events/1018570