Local school board member is taking the helm.
A local school board member and recipient of the Hispanic Engineering National Achievement Award is taking the helm as the new director of the Small Business Development Center, hosted by College of the Canyons.
Paul De La Cerda, who will begin his position as director on August 28, has work experience in small business after owning a successful technology business, which focused primarily on the development of patented wireless products and electronic systems for private industry and the federal government. Most recently, De La Cerda launched a private consulting practice focusing on business solutions, fundraising, and marketing strategies.
"I am very eager to work with someone like Paul De La Cerda," said Dena Maloney, dean of economic development. "His solid background in business and strong ties to the community will undoubtedly benefit the college and the continued success of small businesses in our SBDC region."
The Small Business Development Center, which was launched in January 2006, serves the Antelope Valley, San Fernando Valley, and Santa Clarita Valley. Long Beach City College, the lead Center for the entire network, defined the service areas last year.
The center helps prospective and existing small business owners in northern Los Angeles County start, retain or expand their businesses through workshops, one-on-one consulting, and many other resources to the business community. SBDC provides business owners and entrepreneurs with counseling in business plan development, basic accounting, marketing and sales and technology, as well as assistance in accessing capital, state and federal government contracting.
De La Cerda's impressive resume also includes working for the City of Los Angeles in the Mayor's Office as the Director of Homeland Security Grant Programs, the Economic Development Deputy for Los Angeles City Councilmember Greig Smith, covering portions of the San Fernando Valley.
A founding member of the first Hispanic Chamber of Commerce in Oklahoma where he served on the Board of Directors for two years, De La Cerda is also a founding member of the Santa Clarita Chamber of Commerce Hispanic Business Committee, where he has consecutively chaired the "Excelencia Awards Gala" which highlights business achievements and excellence in the local community.
De La Cerda also taught strategic and business planning courses at Oklahoma State University for two years. He received his Bachelor of Science degree in civil and environmental engineering and a master of business administration from Oklahoma State University. He is also an executive management graduate from the University of Virginia's Darden Graduate School of Business Administration.
For more information about the Small Business Development Center at College of the Canyons visit the college's website at www.canyonsecondev.org or call (661) 294-9375.