Joel Youngs, the regional director of the Eastern Iowa Small Business Development Center, or SBDC, in Davenport, has been named the 2018 Iowa "State Star" by America’s SBDC Iowa.
The annual award recognizes SBDC personnel for demonstrating exemplary work performance, significantly contributing to the organization’s economic development efforts, and showing a strong commitment to small businesses.
"Joel’s boundless energy and willingness to take on new projects is a major factor to moving our network forward. He works tirelessly and selflessly for the small businesses within the state of Iowa," said Lisa Shimkat, America’s SBDC Iowa's state director.
Youngs has led the Eastern Iowa SBDC since January 2016. He served previously as regional director of the Illinois SBDC network in Moline, beginning in 2010.
Dr. Ellen Kabat Lensch, vice chancellor of economic and workforce development at Eastern Iowa Community College, said the award is "well deserved recognition" for Youngs. "He is a tremendous asset to the small business community of Iowa. I can think of no one else that each day brings a passion for helping his clients and their small businesses," she added.
Youngs will be recognized at a special reception during America’s SBDC national fall conference in Washington, D.C. in September.
Funded in part through a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration, America’s SBDC Iowa has 15 regional assistance centers across the state.
The Eastern Iowa SBDC assists Iowa businesses and entrepreneurs in Clinton, Jackson, Muscatine, and Scott counties through no fee, confidential, customized, professional business counseling and practical, affordable training workshops.