Metairie, LA April, 2009 Helping Small Businesses FEMA teams up with the Small Business Administration to help small businesses in the New Orleans area become federal contractors. Today we have collaborated with the SBA, our federal partner, to host one of our seminars in a series of 7, of our small business education plan. This is the how to become 8a certified seminar. Basically, if you���re eligible to become an 8a business, that can open up many federal procurement opportunities for you. I���m an attorney, but I also own 2 construction companies. We���re here to try to access the services of SBA. The purpose and the mission of these goals are to increase our small business and our small disadvantaged business such as woman owned or service disabled vets. It���s to increase their participation and their inclusion in the federal marketplace. So, we are trying to level the playing field. We first take you throughout a 30 minute, 45 minute power point presentation where she goes over the factors of becoming an 8a small business. And then we take you through a hands on training of the 8a application and the process and the different websites that you���ll be needing to complete your application. This is actually my third 8a seminar. 8a is a program for disadvantaged businesses. My partner is a former NFL football player, Maurice Hurst. He���s retired from the NFL and the New Orleans Saints. And now he���s in this industry. What we���re trying to learn is how to access a lot of the benefits of the small business and what the federal government does to help encourage small businesses. I think the federal government does a fantastic job with the Small Business Association. Without the Small Business Association, a lot of businesses would never have gotten started. It provides a road map and an opportunity to thrive for a lot of companies that would have been shut out of the process.