Chancellor Malatras Announces SUNY Small Business Development Centers Helped Nearly 3,000 COVID-19-Impacted Businesses Secure More than $560 Million in Funding, Save Over 28,000 Jobs During Pandemic

May 4, 2021

Full-Time Expert Business Advisors at 22 Campuses Offer Free Help to Entrepreneurs Seeking Funding, and Businesses Looking to Expand and Reopen Amid COVID-19

Announcement Comes with Applications Opening This Week for Federal Restaurant Revitalization Fund; Chancellor Malatras Encouraging Small Businesses to Utilize SUNY SBDC for Free Application Assistance and Business Support as State Moves toward Substantial Reopening

View Photos of the Chancellor's Visit to Longtime New York SBDC Client Lost Dog Café & Lounge

View video of the full press conference

Binghamton, NY
– State University of New York Chancellor Jim Malatras announced today that the New York Small Business Development Center (New York SBDC)—the state's premier business assistance organization administered by SUNY and funded by the U.S. Small Business Administration—has helped nearly 3,000 COVID-19-impacted small business owners secure more than $560 million in aid over the last 14 months. That funding includes more than $265 million in Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans, nearly $125 million in COVID-19 Economic Injury Disaster (EIDL) loans, as well as other local, state, and federal grants.

Through expert business counseling and training, the New York SBDC has helped COVID-19-impacted clients stay afloat, reimagine the services they provide and the customers they serve, reopen, and even thrive over a tumultuous and unprecedented period for the business community. Its services have helped save more than 28,000 jobs and create more than 2,500 jobs for client businesses.

With 22 campus-based regional centers and dozens of outreach offices situated in the heart of local communities, the New York SBDC employs a roster of full-time professional business advisors who provide expert management and technical assistance to start-up and existing businesses. Combining the resources of higher education, the private sector, and government, they solve business problems and foster entrepreneurship.

Chancellor Malatras detailed the recent work of the New York SBDC during today's visit and press conference at the Lost Dog Café & Lounge in Binghamton, a community staple for more than 25 years and a New York SBDC client since 1997.

Last spring, COVID-19 forced co-owners Marie McKenna and Liz Hughes to shut down for approximately two months. The pair worked with the New York SBDC to secure more than $316,000 in PPP loan money to keep their staff employed.

McKenna and Hughes—who credit SBDC advisors for helping them grow into strong entrepreneurs over more than two decades—were also able to devise a temporary take-out model, simplify their menu, target a new customer base, build a conducive outdoor space, and design messaging to make people feel safe coming back to their restaurant. Business steadily rose by the summer, bringing much-needed foot traffic and economic activity back to the downtown area.

On Monday, the New York SBDC helped McKenna and Hughes complete their application for the newly established Restaurant Revitalization Fund (RRF), part of President Biden's American Rescue Plan. The fund will provide direct relief funds to restaurants and other hard-hit food establishments that have experienced significant operational losses due to the pandemic. SUNY is strongly encouraging other business owners to utilize the New York SBDC for RRF, PPP, and Shuttered Venue Operator Grant (SVOG) application assistance as New York State moves toward a significant reopening and rebirth in the weeks and months to come.

"SUNY is an integral part of the broader community and the Small Business Development Center program is the perfect example of how SUNY, local leaders, businesses, and entrepreneurs can work together to improve the local economy across the state. These past 14 months have been difficult for small business owners, and the SBDCs on our campuses across the state have been a lifeline for thousands of entrepreneurs, connecting them with more than $560 million in financial assistance, helping them adapt their business models, providing much-needed expertise, and saving tens of thousands of jobs," said Chancellor Malatras. "This is just another example of how important the State University of New York is to the broader community. I want to thank Lost Dog Café and Lounge Owners Marie McKenna and Liz Hughes for hosting us today, and for showcasing the value of the New York SBDC within their own entrepreneurial journey."

Lost Dog Café & Lounge Co-Owner Marie McKenna said, "Our relationship with the SBDC has been a longstanding one, and has been instrumental in helping us keep our doors open and remain hopeful despite the challenges brought forth by the pandemic. The SBDC has been nothing but instrumental in contributing to our success, as they've supported us and our mission from the beginning, and provided us with hands-on learning opportunities and resources to ensure that we were informed about strategic business decisions, all while preserving the uniqueness of our restaurant and our goal to take care of our community."

Lost Dog Café & Lounge Co-Owner Liz Hughes said, "We wouldn't be here if it weren't for the SBDC—we had a great idea and passion, but lacked the business background, and they have guided us every step of the way from teaching us about cash flow to developing our business plan. Over the years, we have worked with the SBDC and have found this partnership to be extremely helpful in achieving our business objectives and receiving the support we needed to thrive. To anyone trying to make their way through the pandemic or wanting to open a business, reach out to a SBDC—they will be a tremendous ally to you and your organization."

Binghamton University President Harvey Stenger said, "These businesses are the lifeblood of our community— they provide the goods and services that make our region a vital, exciting place. SBDC works for the Southern Tier and is one of the best examples of community outreach from the University, and I'm proud that SUNY—and Binghamton University—can do so much to help these businesses recover and renew because of the work of our SBDCs."

Tammy Morrow, Interim State Director of the New York Small Business Development Center said, "Looking ahead, it is clear that New York's SBDCs will continue to play an important role in the State's economic development, providing local expertise and nimbly navigating regional realities to help lead the state's long-term economic recovery. In just the first month of 2021, NYSBDCs helped thousands of New York's small businesses survive by securing tens of millions through the PPP and EIDL programs, while simultaneously helping them thrive in and prepare for what will be a dramatically changed post-pandemic business-landscape. Although here in support of the success of the Lost Dog Café & Lounge and the RRF for all those eligible, it is important to understand that we are in support of all small businesses from start-up to reopening, recovery, resiliency, and growth. So, whether you're a business looking to survive and reopen and grow, or whether you're an entrepreneur with an idea that could get our economy moving again, give your dedicated professionals at your local SBDC a call."

Broome County Executive Jason Garnar said, "Local restaurants are an important part of Broome County's economy, attracting patrons to our downtown areas. In the face of the huge challenges the COVID-19 pandemic presented, these businesses stepped up and reinvented themselves. I appreciate SUNY and the SBDC's efforts to help them bounce back and encourage the community to do the same by eating local."

Binghamton Mayor Richard C. David said, "Binghamton's restaurant industry has been a driving force for downtown revitalization and is a critical employer in our region. Small businesses, like Lost Dog Café, are part of the fabric of our community. I thank Chancellor Malatras for highlighting the work of the New York SBDC, and showcasing the importance of all levels of government working together to support small businesses impacted by this pandemic."

The New York SBDC works closely with other state economic development agencies, faculty, and students at host institutions, as well as representatives from private industry and business to focus resources on assisting small businesses and entrepreneurs. The SBDC emphasizes counseling and training services to women, veterans, people with special needs, and minority clients.

Their work also includes connecting potential employers with job placement offices on SUNY campuses. This effort links SUNY students and alumni to jobs in the community.

The New York SBDC's full-time professional business advisors undergo rigorous professional certification to keep their business knowledge up-to-the-minute and their counseling skills sharp. Their skills are augmented by the New York SBDC Research Network—one of the most advanced business information resources in the country. The Research Network, located in Albany, New York, provides New York SBDC business advisors with the latest economic, demographic, regulatory, and other data that can have an impact on small business success.

Established in 1984, the New York SBDC has worked with more than 519,000 businesses, helping them to invest $7.5 billion in the state economy and create more than 240,000 jobs. Please find a local SBDC at or contact the local Binghamton SBDC at

About the State University of New York
The State University of New York is the largest comprehensive system of higher education in the United States, and more than 95 percent of all New Yorkers live within 30 miles of any one of SUNY’s 64 colleges and universities. Across the system, SUNY has four academic health centers, five hospitals, four medical schools, two dental schools, a law school, the country’s oldest school of maritime, the state’s only college of optometry, and manages one US Department of Energy National Laboratory. In total, SUNY serves about 1.4 million students amongst its entire portfolio of credit- and non-credit-bearing courses and programs, continuing education, and community outreach programs. SUNY oversees nearly a quarter of academic research in New York. Research expenditures system-wide are nearly $1.1 billion in fiscal year 2023, including significant contributions from students and faculty. There are more than three million SUNY alumni worldwide, and one in three New Yorkers with a college degree is a SUNY alum. To learn more about how SUNY creates opportunities, visit

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