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ASBA Becomes Part of Community Grant Program through The Walmart Foundation / Sam's Club

Posted By Ashley Vizzerra, Arizona Small Business Association, Tuesday, December 8, 2015



Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Contact: Ashley Vizzerra
Communications Coordinator
(602) 306-4000

ASBA Becomes Part of Community Grant Program through The Walmart Foundation / Sam’s Club

Phoenix, AZ – The Arizona Small Business Association (ASBA) is a proud recipient of a $22,000 grant through the Community Grant Program provided by The Walmart Foundation / Sam’s Club to fund education and mentoring outreach for the small business community across Arizona.

Rick Murray, ASBA CEO, Carol Mangen, ASBA Director of Member Benefits, and Julie Armstrong, ASBA Community Engagement and Events Manager received the $22,000 check fromTodd Harkins, Market Membership Sales Manager of Sam’s Club. Participating in the event were several employees at the Sam’s Club Chandler location.

Although a global organization, The Walmart Foundation / Sam’s Club strongly believes in giving back locally – creating an impact in the neighborhoods where we all live and work. Through the Community Grant Program, The Walmart Foundation / Sam’s Club proudly support the needs of their communities by providing grants to local organizations.

“Our members are business owners and we want to help make them profitable and save money whether they are coming in and purchasing items for their office or for their family. The more we can do to support ASBA in providing education to business owners the better it is for not only us, but our small businesses, and the community,” Todd Harkins expressed.

“Part of our job as the statewide resource for small businesses is to help our small business owners succeed by providing them with opportunities to save money which translates to bigger profits,” states Rick Murray, ASBA CEO. “We are honored to be a part of the Community Grant Program and value the support Walmart / Sam’s Club provides for the small business community.”


Tags:  community  education  small business 

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Connect2CoverageAZ Offers the Only Off-Exchange Website to Shop for Health Insurance

Posted By Ashley Vizzerra, Arizona Small Business Association, Wednesday, December 2, 2015




Tuesday, December 1, 2015


Contact: Ashley Vizzerra

Communications Coordinator

(602) 306-4000


Connect2CoverageAZ Offers the Only Off-Exchange Website to Shop for Health Insurance

Phoenix, AZ – The Arizona Small Business Association (ASBA) has partnered with Connected Health to create, bringing individuals the only Arizona off-exchange marketplace to shop for health insurance.  The online platform created a simple solution for individuals to be able to shop all available health insurance carriers based on personal options and financial goals. 

Buyers of individual health insurance have been left with fewer choices this year with the mergers and closings of several carriers.  Further, the insurance companies have moved to more HMO options and very few PPO choices, particularly in the platinum and gold metal level offerings that were available last year.

Rick Murray, ASBA CEO, comments, “Shopping for health insurance can be quite tedious for individuals who are not sure where to begin. allows them to shop all carriers and compare plans and premiums side-by-side, with the added benefit of being able to review their typical healthcare usage and get recommendations on the plans that would best fit their lifestyle.  Small business employers can also use the site as a means to direct their employees to a comprehensive shopping site, hence bringing them a valuable tool.”

Recently, new resources have been added such as dental, vision and HAS enrollment making Connect2CoverageAZ the go-to platform for all health insurance needs.  The site is the one-stop shop allowing individuals to enroll for benefits all in one place.  Whether you have a tax benefit or not, is the only place to shop for all the plans available in Arizona. For more information contact Carol Mangen, ASBA Director of Benefits at 602-306-4000.  Enroll for health insurance today at



Tags:  healthcare  insurance  small business 

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New Small Business Radio Show Debuts in Arizona

Posted By Ray Silverstein, PRO, President's Resource Organization, Thursday, November 5, 2015

“2 Small Biz Guys” Talk Show Offers Practical Advice to Entrepreneurs

One of the greatest challenges of owning a small business is that entrepreneurs have to go it alone. But Arizona’s small business community has a new resource for ideas and information: the 2 Small Biz Guys radio show, airing Monday nights at 8 pm on Independent 1100 KFNX radio. The show debuted October 12.

As the name implies, two local small business experts—Ray Silverstein and Zen Benefiel—have joined forces to offer a mix of advice, anecdotes and inspiration to entrepreneurs. Together, they bring more than 60 years of combined small business and radio experience to the table.

Topics will range from how to develop a successful marketing program…resolve cash flow issues… hire an effective salesperson….or create a long-term business plan. Guests will include local business leaders and entrepreneurs who’ve solved their own pressing business problems. Listeners will have the opportunity to call in with questions and request specific advice. 

For more than two decades, Silverstein has facilitated small business peer groups via his company, PRO President’s Resource Organization, which operates in Phoenix and Chicago. He is the author of two books, The Best Secrets of Great Small Businesses, and The Small Business Survival Guide, and is a blogger for the Phoenix Business Journal. 

Benefiel, owner of Be the Dream LLC, is a career, executive, and life coach with more than 20 years of experience “putting people, places and things together to achieve business objectives.” He has authored numerous publications and has an MA in Organizational Management and an MBA in Project Management.


For more information about the show, visit or call 800-818-0150.  

Tags:  radio show  small business 

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ASBA is a 2015 Arizona Capitol Times Leader of the Year in Public Policy

Posted By Ashley Vizzerra, Arizona Small Business Association, Thursday, September 17, 2015



Thursday, September 17, 2015


Contact: Ashley Vizzerra

Communications Coordinator

(602) 203-4000


ASBA is a 2015 Arizona Capitol Times Leader of the Year in Public Policy Awards Recipient

Arizona Capitol Times will honor 21 individuals and organizations on Wednesday, September 30 at its 9th annual Leaders of the Year in Public Policy awards event.  The Arizona Small Business Association (ASBA) is proud to be amongst the twenty-one public and private individuals and entities recognized for various accomplishments.

“Leaders of the Year shines a light on the individuals and organizations who have a positive impact on public policy across Arizona,” said Ginger Lamb, vice president and publisher of Arizona News Service and Arizona Capitol Times. “The awards were created back in 2007 for us to give back to the community and salute their efforts. Plus, it is the only event of its kind in our state to honor leadership and excellence in public policy.”

“We are very honored to be recognized by the Capitol Times,” says Rick Murray, ASBA CEO.  “As THE statewide resource for small business in Arizona, the award for Economic Development certainly fits into our mission of helping Arizona businesses create jobs and prosper.  We owe great thanks to our members and the small business community for their continuous support in the Arizona Small Business Association.”

A selection committee comprised of leaders from the Capitol community and Lamb chose the recipients in the categories of arts and humanities, associations, business, economic development, education, environment, government, health care, legislative, non-profit, public safety social services, technology, transportation, unsung hero, up and comer, volunteerism, and lifetime achievement. One elected official was also selected by the editors of Arizona News Service & Arizona Capitol Times to receive the Open Government Award for upholding issues fundamental to the media including First Amendment issues, transparency and public access.





The 2015 honorees are:

Arts & Humanities
Senator Bob and Mrs. Christi Worsley

Arizona Craft Brewers Guild
Beer & Wine Distributors of Arizona


Economic Development
Arizona Small Business Association “Crowdfunding Legislation”

American Federation for Children

Henry R. Darwin

Wendy Baldo, Senate Chief of Staff

Banner Alzheimer’s Foundation

Senator Steve Yarbrough

Lifetime Achievement
J. Elliott Hibbs

Project CENTRL

Open Government
Rep. Kate Brophy McGee

Public Safety
Joe Hart, Arizona Mine Inspector – “Stay Out Stay Alive” campaign


Arizona Department of Transportation
Bill Mackey of Granite

Unsung Hero
Sam Polito

Up & Comer
Senator Carlyle Begay

Gabriel’s Angels

Social Services
Charles Shipman, State Refugee Coordinator

Tickets for the event are $85 each or $900 for a table of ten or $1,500 for a VIP table. For details or to purchase tickets, call Alison Marciniak at 602-889-7120, email or visit



Tags:  crowdfunding  public policy  small business 

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SBA Launches Second Round of InnovateHER Business Challenge for Innovations That Empower Women’s Lives

Posted By Gabriel Salcido, Arizona Small Business Association, Tuesday, August 4, 2015
SBA PRESS OFFICE                  
Release Date: August 4, 2015
Contact:  Miguel Ayala (202) 450-0148
Release Number: 15-65
Internet Address:
WASHINGTON – The U.S. Small Business Administration today announced the launch of the 2016 InnovateHER: Innovating for Women Business Challenge and Summit, including a nationwide women’s business competition to highlight innovative products and services that help impact and empower the lives of women and their families.
“The SBA is pleased to announce this second round of our InnovateHER Business Challenge, building on the success of our 2015 challenge where we engaged over 100 organizations and reached over 1,000 entrepreneurs across the nation,” said SBA Administrator Maria Contreras-Sweet.  “We have expanded on our pilot InnovateHER Women’s Business Challenge to include a women’s summit that will make the competition more impactful.”
The InnovateHER: Innovating for Women Business Challenge and Summit will kick off in the fall of 2015 with local competitions hosted by universities, accelerators, clusters, scale-up communities, SBA’s resource partners, and other organizations.  The SBA is seeking to unearth products or services that have a measurable impact on women and their families, fill a need in the marketplace, and have the potential for commercialization. Women control 80 percent of the purchasing power in this country; yet make up less than 5% of venture capitalists. This is why SBA is launching the expanded InnovateHER Challenge, which focuses on empowering more women in the investment space and in the innovation space.
Women across this country will benefit from investing in research and inventions that impact their experiences at home, in the workplace and even at the doctor’s office. A lack of inclusion in the innovation space leads to missed opportunities, especially when women make the majority of the buying decisions. That is why SBA is encouraging organizations across the country to participate in this important Challenge.
Those entrepreneurs selected as winners of their local competitions will advance to the semi-final round.  From the semi-finalist pool, the SBA will select up to 10 finalists who will be invited to the National InnovateHER: Innovating for Women Business Challenge and Summit in March in Washington, D.C. during Women’s History Month.  The finalists will pitch their products and ideas to a panel of expert judges and compete for $70,000 in prize money provided by Microsoft.
For more information on the challenge, including challenge rules, visit
Cosponsorship authorization No. 15-6050-169.  SBA’s participation in this cosponsored activity is not an endorsement of the views, opinions, products, or services of any cosponsor or other person or entity. All SBA programs and services are extended to the public on a nondiscriminatory basis. Reasonable arrangements for persons with disabilities will be made if requested at least two weeks in advance.

Tags:  inovation  small business  women businesses 

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