Small-business agency picks new isle director


POSTED: Wednesday, January 13, 2010


Jane Sawyer has been selected as the new director of the U.S. Small Business Administration's Hawaii district office.

Sawyer, a 16-year veteran of the Hawaii office, succeeds Andrew Poepoe, who retired in January 2009. Karen Sakihama, normally the deputy district director, had served as acting district director the past 11 months.

Sawyer will oversee all activities of the federal agency, from loans and lending relations with financial institutions, to small-business training and counseling assistance through SBA resource partners such as the Small Business Development Centers, SCORE and Women's Business Centers.

In fiscal year 2009, the Hawaii district office guaranteed 420 loans with a value of $55.5 million. The office also assisted more than 10,300 small-business owners and entrepreneurs, directly and with their funded resource partners. The 8(a) Business Development and Government Contracting programs provided support for a portfolio of about 170 companies with $231,642,420 in federal contracting awards in the last year.