New administrator takes charge at SBA

Jovita Carranza is sworn in as the 26th administrator of the U.S. Small Business Administration. Carranza brings to the position experience in the public and private sectors. (Photo courtesy U.S. Small Business Administration)

A woman who’s worked as an executive in both the public and private sectors takes over a federal agency that assists small businesses.

Jovita Carranza was sworn in as the 26th administrator of the U.S. Small Business Administration.

President Donald Trump nominated Carranza to lead the SBA while she was serving as treasurer of the United States. The Senate voted 88-5 to confirm the nomination. Carranza served as deputy administrator of the SBA under the George W. Bush administration.

“I want to thank the president for his confidence in me to be an advocate in the cabinet for our country’s 30 million small businesses. And I want to express my sincere gratitude to the U.S. Senate for confirming me in a bipartisan fashion,” Carranza said. “I look forward to helping elevate female entrepreneurs and our military veterans, expanding access to SBA resources among entrepreneurs in disadvantaged communities and continuing to prioritize disaster relief.”

Carranza worked for 30 years with United Parcel Service, where she began as an hourly dock worker and rose to oversee operations in Latin America and the Caribbean. She retired as the highest-ranking Latina in the company’s history.

She holds a master’s of business administration degree from the University of Miami in Coral Gables and received additional training at Michigan State University, the University of Chicago and INSEAD Business School in France.

In testimony before the U.S. Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship, Carranza discussed her experience in the private and public sectors as well as what she said is the life-changing potential of entrepreneurship.

“Throughout my life — as a young girl in a working-class community, as an executive leader at a global company and as a government official — I’ve seen the transformative power entrepreneurship can have on individuals, communities and the global economy.”

Carranza said she hopes to create more opportunities for women and historically underrepresented entrepreneurs while ensuring the SBA remains prepared to assist displaced homeowners and small businesses affected by disaster.

“Whatever success I achieved in life has been a function of not only hard work, but also opportunity, guidance and advocacy I received from others,” she said. “I will leverage the power of this agency to continue to provide the same kind of support that I received to entrepreneurs who need it most.”