Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Small Business Success Story - Doris Ulysse

Each year the New York Small Business Development Center recognizes outstanding small businesses in a variety of ways.  This Success Story from the  Brooklyn SBDC appears in our 2016 Annual Report


Doris Ulysse
Brooklyn SBDC

The story of Doris Ulysse is testimony to the grit and talent of a determined African American woman entrepreneur. Doris specializes in network design and administration. She is particularly adept at configuring and integrating hardware and software for a full spectrum of client types. She first consulted the Brooklyn SBDC after years of working as an IT professional to “test the waters” of entrepreneurship. 

Advisor Janet Page expertly guided her through the business planning process and MWBE certification protocol. Doris became an MWBE subcontractor through the NYC Office of General Services and a contractor for the NYC Housing Authority. She learned that having certifications had little to do with getting contracts as a Prime or sub-contractor. After two years of frustration with lack of access to government contracts, Doris returned to the SBDC. 

Advisor Sanford Gerber, a 35-year veteran of the SBA 8A program, showed her how to use the 8A system as it is intended. At Sanford’s suggestion, Doris re-focused her attention on the 8a certification process. He helped Doris obtain a $5,000 line of credit to demonstrate financial capacity. Then he showed her how to research the federal database to find prime contractors looking for partners, and how to find other successful 8a firms with which to network. Doris gives both Janet Page and Sanford Gerber credit for being as passionate about her business as she is. Doris’ next steps are to get an even larger line of credit, finish the NYC Mentorship Program, enter the SBA Mentor-Protégée program, and win multiple federal contracts. She just obtained certification in Hospitality Management from Cornell School of Hotel Administration. 

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