WASHINGTON (Gray DC) Burlington entrepreneurs Sascha Mayer and Christine Dodson proudly hold their shiny new awards. They're 2018's Small Business Person of the Year from Vermont.
"We're so excited. We think Mamava really deserves it. And most of all, the moms that made it happen really deserve it," said Mayer.
Mamava was founded in 2013. Its first product-- a lactation suite for nursing moms. The company now has 20 employees and recently launched a new miniature version of the pod.
"It solves the problem in office settings. And we also have a mobile app where moms can find our lactation suites and rooms across the country," said Mayer.
Small Business Administrator Linda McMahon, who handed out awards to small business owners in all 50 states, Washington, D.C., and Puerto Rico, says the winners showed innovation, growth and commitment to the community.
"If they've bought a business, and grown it, what have they done to make it different? Perhaps they have taken a business out of bankruptcy and built it and grown it and turned it into something. Have they started a business that's brand new-- an idea that they had that they wanted to see succeed?" said McMahon.
Mayer and Dodson aren't just taking trophies back home. They're building a camaraderie with their fellow small business award winners.
"Just understanding the SBA as a resource, and it's exciting to be here in Washington," said Dodson.
As Mayer and Dodson head back to Vermont, McMahon will hit the road in an SBA bus, meeting with small business owners in Florida, Georgia and the Carolinas.
The awards ceremony was part of National Small Business Week, which continues through May 5. Click "Related Links" for more information.