UHV SBDC receives Victoria Chamber of Commerce partnership award

University of Houston-Victoria Small Business Development staff members accept the Victoria Chamber of Commerce Business Partner of the Month award at the May chamber luncheon. Pictured are Lindsey Young, SBDC certified business advisor III, left; Randy Vivian, president and CEO of the Victoria Chamber of Commerce; U.S. Rep. Blake Farenthold, SBDC Director Joe Humphreys; and SBDC Associate Director Lisa Barr.

For the second time in four years, the University of Houston-Victoria Small Business Development Center was honored for its collaborative relationship with the Victoria Chamber of Commerce.

The SBDC was named the chamber’s Small Business Partner of the Month at the May chamber luncheon. The award is given monthly to one of the chamber’s small business members that have demonstrated support for the organization.

“We partner with the SBDC on a lot of events,” said Randy Vivian, president and CEO of the Victoria Chamber of Commerce. “The partnership makes us a stronger chamber and provides a vital link for the business community. The services that the center supplies complement our investors’ interests.”

The chamber and SBDC worked closely together to coordinate the May 9 Leadercast in Victoria. The event included the simulcast of a worldwide leadership conference and a local panel discussion about leadership. More than 150 people attended.

“We are honored to receive this recognition from the chamber,” SBDC Director Joe Humphreys said. “We team up with the chamber throughout the year on training sessions, including the Lunch & Learn series and Building Better Businesses workshops. We really work well together.”

SBDC previously won the Small Business Partner of the Month award in December 2011 for its work forming a supportive network for small business owners in the Crossroads.

“The area chambers of commerce are so important to us because they are widely recognized in the business community,” Humphreys said. “Chambers of commerce sometimes open doors for us that we couldn’t open otherwise.”

Farhang Niroomand, dean of the UHV School of Business Administration, said he is pleased the chamber and SBDC effectively collaborate.

“There’s several good reasons the SBDC and chamber are neighbors,” he said of their shared office building at 3402 N. Ben Wilson St. “The sharing of resources and training have greatly benefited their clients.”

The UHV SBDC offers assistance on starting, growing and financing a business; contracting opportunities; and recovering from a disaster. Most of its services are free to area small business owners in Aransas, Bee, Calhoun, DeWitt, Gonzales, Goliad, Jackson, Karnes, Lavaca, Refugio and Victoria counties. It is part of a nationwide small business assistance program serving the small business community and federal, state and local governments.

For more information about the UHV SBDC, call 361-485-4485 or email

The University of Houston-Victoria, located in the heart of the Coastal Bend region since 1973 in Victoria, Texas, offers courses leading to more than 80 academic programs in the schools of Arts & Sciences; Business Administration; and Education, Health Professions & Human Development. UHV provides face-to-face classes at its Victoria campus, as well as an instructional site in Katy, Texas, and online classes that students can take from anywhere. UHV supports the American Association of State Colleges and Universities Opportunities for All initiative to increase awareness about state colleges and universities and the important role they have in providing a high-quality and accessible education to an increasingly diverse student population, as well as contributing to regional and state economic development.

Jeremy Shapiro