Katy Gould, Director of Haywood Community College’s Small Business Center was recently recognized as the 2015 NC Small Business Center Network’s Rookie of the Year. This award is designed to recognize new directors that have been in the position for two years or less for outstanding performance on the job and for significant growth in their center.

Gould joined Haywood Community College in February 2014 as the Director of the HCC Small Business Center. Following in the footsteps of the college’s previous director who was a seasoned veteran with many years of experience was not going to be an easy task.  Gould’s childhood experiences in Small Business and higher education focus on entrepreneurship coupled with her strong advocacy for small businesses in Haywood County made her well suited for the role.

“Haywood Community College is fortunate to have Katy Gould at the helm in our Small Business Center,” says Dr. Barbara Parker. “She is a tremendous asset to us at the college as well as to our community! Small businesses are such an integral part of our economy in Haywood County, and Katy is highly committed to ensuring they have the resources they need to be successful.”

Gould recognized that she not only wanted to provide information and resources to clients, but she appreciated and respected the unique needs of each business, challenging each client to push their boundaries and evaluate the need to grow, scale back, or refocus when necessary. She transitioned seminar offerings to include in depth topics and workshop series for both the startup and the experienced entrepreneur. 

In addition to coaching HCC students Chris Allen and Megan Brown of the Waynesville Soda Jerks, the National Association for Community College Entrepreneurship Student Entrepreneurs of the Year, Gould has worked with clients including, Dave Angel of Elevated Mountain Distilling, this year’s recipient of the Haywood County Chamber of Commerce Business Startup Competition.

I am so happy that Katy Gould is receiving this award which she so deserves!” explains Angel. “The Haywood SBC, under Katy’s leadership, is a tremendous resource. Katy’s real strength shows in her ability to be a business coach.  She gave me honest feedback so that I was best prepared to operate and lead my own business. And she continues to be a resource as my business evolves.”

At HCC, Gould serves on numerous committees and is active in partnering with the college’s Workforce Development Continuing Education Department to include additional classes. She is also key to the development of Entrepreneurship interdisciplinary training throughout HCC’s curriculum programs. Likewise, Gould is active in the community where she serves on numerous boards, committees, and associations.

“The Small Business Center Network’s Rookie of the Year could not have gone to a more deserving director,” says Amanda Sorrells, Assistant Director of Entrepreneurship at the NC Rural Center. “She is truly dedicated to each of her clients and improving economic development in Haywood County through small business. Since Katy became the director, I have seen small businesses and clients soar because of the resources and guidance that she has been able to provide them. Katy is a true public servant to the county and there could not be a more worthy director to achieve this award than her.”

Visit SBC.Haywood.edu or call 828.627.4512 for additional information. Thinking about starting a business in Haywood County or growing an existing business? Take advantage of the programs, services and resources provided by the Small Business Center. The NC Community College’s Small Business Center Network assists in starting an average of more than 600 businesses each year. Small Business Centers have an economic impact in 90% of all NC Counties each year, helping to create and retain nearly 3,000 jobs annually.