WASHINGTON – Today, the House Committee on Small Business heard from recently confirmed Small Business Administration (SBA) Administrator Jovita Carranza on priorities for the agency and the fiscal year 2021 budget.
“Ms. Carranza was confirmed by the Senate last month by an overwhelmingly bipartisan vote, becoming the highest-ranking woman of Latin American heritage in the federal government,” said Ranking Member Steve Chabot (R-OH). “I am equally impressed and excited about her ideas of how to modernize and streamline the Agency that is the only go-to resource and voice for small businesses backed by the strength of the federal government. Ms. Carranza brings a wealth of experience and a remarkable resume with her to the SBA… Before her work at the SBA, she had a distinguished 30+ year career with United Parcel Service, where she broke barriers as the highest-ranking Latina in the company’s history after starting as an hourly dock worker.”
Carranza Highlights Importance of Reaching Underserved Communities, International Trade
Administrator Carranza told the Committee about her background, saying, “I was raised in Chicago, but my work career began in California. As a single mother raising and child and working part-time loading trucks for UPS. Over the years that followed, I was honored by public service opportunities in two administrations, as SBA deputy administrator, as U.S. Treasurer and now as a Cabinet member.”
“A top priority of mine is to continue the success of our disaster assistance program,” she continued. “I can assure that when a disaster strikes in your state or district, SBA is ready to help and will continue to be prepared under my leadership.”
When asked by Ranking Member Chabot about how small businesses can benefit from Opportunity Zones, Administrator Carranza responded, “We have HUBZone, we have Microloan lenders, we have the Opportunity Zones and now we’re looking at concentrating not only resources but funding, appropriate funding, for those communities. So, we’re looking at it in an ecosystem other than just one program called the Opportunity Zone. It’s how can we marry or align all others to reinforce and that the small businesses are aware that they have an opportunity in those areas.”
She also shared the progress small businesses have made in international trade following ratification of the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement. “As the exports grow… we’re looking to ensure that small businesses have a role in that, said Administrator Carranza.