SBA Emerging Leaders Program

SBA Emerging Leaders Program: How It Can Help Your
Small Business Grow
Applications for the 2019 class are now being accepted

Providence, RI – The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is seeking applicants for the 2019 Emerging Leaders Program. “The basis of the Emerging Leaders initiative is to instill within them the knowledge they need to take the next step forward in their small business cycle,” said SBA District Director, Mark S. Hayward. “This will be our fifth year of hosting the program here in Rhode Island and seeing how our past graduates have been able to elevate their businesses to new heights is the true measuring stick of the program’s success,” Hayward added.

Many prospective applicants inquire as to exactly what the Emerging Leaders initiative is and what it entails. Below are the most frequently asked questions:

What is the Emerging Leaders Program?
The Emerging Leaders program is an executive-level, intensive education series that includes approximately 100 hours of training per participant and provides the opportunity for small business owners to work with experienced professionals and develop connections with their peers, city leaders, and financial communities.

What can the Emerging Leaders program do for my small business?
“The Emerging Leaders program provides benefits far beyond the business topics discussed. For AVTECH, it provided the structure for ongoing strategic planning that has helped us grow revenues by 40% since completing the program. It also introduced us to many other successful businesses in the state, many of which we still speak with regularly. Additionally, it connected us with the government and banking resources necessary to support our business growth. I would highly recommend Emerging Leaders to anyone looking for ways to improve their business and take it to the next level” said Richard Grundy, President, and COO of AVTECH Software and 2016 Emerging Leaders graduate.

What exactly does the Emerging Leaders program teach?
Entrepreneurs will be in class for 40 hours of instruction time, taught by Interise, divided over 13 class sessions. Participants will also spend roughly 14 hours in “CEO Mentoring Groups”. The curriculum consists of five modules that will be covered in class; Module 1: Business & Leadership, Module 2: Finances, Module 3: Marketing and Sales, Module 4: Resources, and Module 5: Putting it all together- Strategic Growth Plan Presentations. The average time out-of-class time commitment is three hours for each class, though some sessions demand up to six hours of preparation time. All the instructional approaches – classes, “CEO Mentoring Groups”, and self-paced learning are interconnected and of equal importance.

Does my small business qualify for the Emerging Leaders program?
Participants qualify if their small business has been established for three years or more, have at least one employee, and minimum annual revenue of $250,000.

How much does it cost to participate?
The Emerging Leaders program is free of charge.

How long does the program run for?
Emerging Leaders runs approximately from April through October.

How often does the program meet?
The class meets once every two weeks.

If you would like to apply for the program, click on the registration link If you have any questions about the program, contact Joan L. Moran, Deputy District Director at 401-528-4580 or

About the U.S. Small Business Administration The U.S. Small Business Administration makes the American dream of business ownership a reality. As the only go-to resource and voice for small businesses backed by the strength of the federal government, the SBA empowers entrepreneurs and small business owners with the resources and support they need to start, grow or expand their businesses, or recover from a declared disaster. It delivers services through an extensive network of SBA field offices and partnerships with public and private organizations. To learn more, visit

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