The South Eastern Economic Development (SEED) Corporation has selected J.M. Pet Resort of Brockton, Ma. as the “Small Business of the Year” for 2016. The award will be presented at SEED’s 34th Annual Meeting at 5:30 pm on Thursday, December 1 at White’s of Westport in Westport, Ma.
“We are very pleased to present our Small Business of the Year award to J.M Pet Resort, a woman owned small business which has doubled sales since 2009, and grown to 49 employees,” stated Maria Gooch-Smith, SEED’s executive director.
“J.M. Pet Resort is an excellent example of entrepreneurship and sound management, and being able to turn a passion for the well being of animals into a successful business” stated Gooch-Smith. The business was established 18 years ago by Jeni Mather, the owner and president of the company.
In 1998, J.M. Pet Resort began operating as a motivational training facility in a single room. In the last 18 years, the small business has grown into a state-of-the-art pet care facility with a full service staff providing essential pet care needs. In order to provide affordable veterinary care, Jeni Mather has recently added J.M Pet Vet, a mobile clinic stationed at the facility.
SEED’s Nominating Committee selected J.M. Pet Resort from a pool of 300 candidates. SEED’s criteria included enhancement of the region’s economy through job creation, continued growth over a period of years, and sound financial management.
The hotel style boarding facility accommodates dogs in climate controlled suites, and has a large outdoor play area, and two climate controlled indoor spaces where dogs can run, play and socialize. The facility provides boarding and grooming for dogs and cats, doggie day care, and motivational obedience training, and welcomes all breeds seven days a week.
In addition to serving as president of J.M. Pet Resort, Jeni Mather is: the founder and director of Brockton Blue Dog Shelter; a veterinary technician; a certified pet tech instructor; and a level two certified dog trainer. She is also the West Bridgewater animal control officer. Jeni is a graduate of Stone Hill College in Easton.
In 2009, SEED provided J.M. Pet Resort with a $367,000 loan under the SBA 504 Program in conjunction with financing from Eastern Bank for a total project of $900,000. The financing enabled the company to expand by moving from 3,000 square feet of leased space into their own 10,000 square foot facility.
In addition to the “Small Business of the Year” award, SEED will present the “Regional Business Advocate of the Year” award to State Representative Patricia Haddad for her crucial role in insuring that the State’s energy legislation provides for offshore wind which will be vital to the region’s economic future.
SEED will present the “Banker of the Year” award to the lender in the region who has participated in the largest amount of loans with SEED, and exemplifies the spirit of assistance to small businesses.
The guest speaker at SEED’s Annual Meeting is Robert Nelson, the Massachusetts District Director for the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA). He will be assisting with the award presentations along with Mark Hayward, the Rhode Island District Director for SBA.
At the meeting, SEED members will vote on a slate for officers, directors and members for 2017. The slate for SEED Officers includes: Richard Shafer, Chair (Taunton Development Corporation); Jennifer Menard, Vice Chair (Bristol Community College); Charles Dwyer, Vice Chair (Middlesex Savings Bank); Lorraine Travers, CPA, Treasurer; Robert Reisner, Assistant Treasurer (Cape Cod Five Cents Savings Bank); William Lewis, Clerk (Bristol County Savings Bank); Wayne Carvalho, Assistant Clerk (First Citizens Federal Credit Union); and Gerard Nadeau, Past Chair (Rockland Trust Company).
SEED is a non-profit corporation certified in late 1982 by the SBA. SEED provides financing ranging from a $1,000 micro loan to a $5.5 million SBA 504 loan to small businesses in Massachusetts and Rhode Island. In 2016, SEED made 68 small business loans totaling $16.9 million and creating 270 new jobs.
SEED’s directors and members represent small businesses, financial institutions, local officials and community organizations. Members meet on an annual basis to elect a board of directors and officers. For more information about the Annual Meeting and SEED’s programs call 508-822-1020 or visit www.seedcorp.com.