SBA Chief of Staff to Speak at New ABA Session at BEA

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Ana M. Ma, chief of staff at the U.S. Small Business Administration, will be one of the featured speakers at a new ABA session at BookExpo America, "How SBA and the Federal Stimulus Package Can Help Your Business," to be held Saturday, May 30, from 10:30 a.m. - noon, at the Javits Convention Center.

"Ms. Ma is looking forward to talking with the members of the American Booksellers Association," said SBA spokesman Jonathan Swain. "Ms. Ma will share what the SBA is doing as part of the Recovery Act to help small businesses get access to much-needed capital in these tough economic times, and how SBA is working to be a real partner with small businesses across the country in creating jobs and driving our nation's economic recovery."

"We're delighted to have someone as knowledgeable about small business issues as Ana Ma speak at this very important educational session," said ABA COO Oren Teicher, who will serve as moderator. "In these difficult economic times, it is crucial that booksellers are aware of the many ways the Small Business Administration and the federal stimulus package can provide them with access to capital and help their bookstores succeed. I strongly encourage our member bookstores to attend this informative panel." (Watch upcoming editions of BTW for announcements about other panel participants.)

Ma, a native of Tucson, Arizona, was appointed by the Obama-Biden Presidential Transition Team to serve as chief of staff at SBA. Prior to her appointment, she was senior counsel to Congressman Raul Grijalva (D-AZ) for two terms.

Ma has been involved in grassroots organizing for more than 20 years, and has participated in the electoral process at all levels -- from school boards to the last five presidential campaigns. In 1996, Ma was asked by the Clinton/Gore Presidential Campaign and the Democratic National Committee to serve as their Southern Arizona Coordinator.

In 1997, the Clinton Administration selected Ma to join the U.S. Department of Labor under Secretary Alexis Herman as the Intergovernmental Affairs Officer and Special Assistant to the Assistant Secretary for Employment and Training Administration. During her tenure at the Department of Labor, Ma worked on issues such as welfare to work, youth employment and training, and unemployment insurance. She also served as a liaison to county and municipal officials across the country.

In 2001, then newly elected Chairman of the Democratic Party, Terry McAuliffe, hired Ma to serve as the Western Political Director for the DNC where she oversaw 13 states and territories from Montana, to New Mexico, to Guam. From January through September of 2008, Ma was on leave from Congressman Grijalva's staff to serve as the Director of Party Affairs and VIPs for the Democratic National Convention Committee in Denver, Colorado.

Upcoming editions of BTW will have more information regarding this important panel on the Federal economic stimulus package and its provisions designed to help America's small businesses get back on their feet. Among the initiatives are the elimination of fees on popular SBA loan programs and an increase in loan guarantees; new funding for SBA's Microloan Program; and provisions that enable some small businesses to "carry back" their losses for up to five years, effectively allowing them a rebate on taxes paid in previous years. --David Grogan