America’s SBDC Arizona Network Honors 2019 Success Award Winners

From left: Kevin Peck, Frances Martinez, Jeff Taisto, Todd Haynie

THATCHER, Ariz.— Thirteen small businesses from across Arizona were honored at the 2019 Success Awards last month. Nearly 300 state legislators, government officials, business, and community leaders attended the high-profile event, which was held on the Senate Lawn at the Arizona State Capitol.

Locally, Frances Martinez and Jeff Taisto, owners of The Lazy Traveler and The Plank in Safford, received a Success Award for their outstanding achievement as an Arizona small business. The owners worked with Kevin Peck, Director, at the EAC Small Business Development Center to accelerate their company’s growth. Also attending was Todd Haynie, President of Eastern Arizona College, who presented Martinez and Taisto with their award.

Each of the Success Award winners worked with a Small Business Development Center (SBDC) or an Arizona Procurement Technical Assistance Center (AZPTAC) in their area. AZPTAC is a specialty partner program of the America’s SBDC Arizona Network.

“The Success Awards event is always a great day for small business in Arizona,” noted America’s SBDC Arizona State Director Janice Washington. “Each of 2019 winners has created significant impact in their communities through their work with an SBDC center.”

In 2018 alone, America’s SBDC Arizona counseled or trained 5,604 individuals, helped its clients start 333 new businesses, create or retain 1,350 jobs and increase their collective sales by more than $58 million. SBDC counselors also facilitated more than $50 million in capital formation for new and expanding businesses.

About the AZSBDC: America’s SBDC Arizona Network is an innovative partnership that includes 10 community college districts across Arizona, the SBA and the U.S. Department of Defense. The AZSBDC has 10 SBDC Centers, additional satellite locations and four AZPTAC centers statewide. Learn more at