America’s Small Business Development Centers (SBDC) were established in 1977 and can be found in every state in the U.S. Twelve SBDC regional offices are located throughout New Jersey. The SBDC at The College of New Jersey began serving area small business owners in 1981.

A Partnership Program with the U.S Small Business Administration.

A variety of educational and business resources are available to counsel and train small business owners to finance, market and manage their companies. The College of New Jersey students and staff are encouraged to take advantage of SBDC services, including the periodic workshops offered at no cost to the university community. The NJSBDC network also provides opportunities for students to participate in research and get first-hand business experience under the supervision of faculty and business professionals. Learn more about the statewide NJSBDC network.

Our Team

Lorraine Allen - America's Small Business Development Center at The College of New Jersey Mercer CountyLorraine Allen
Regional Director
Phone: (609) 771-2947
Fax: (609) 637-5217

Lorraine has served as the Director for America’s Small Business Development Center at The College of New Jersey for 25 years. She has been responsible for assisting nearly 19,000 small business owners through training and direct counsel. She has forged original special projects including starting Trenton Small Business Week 27 years ago as well as the current successful Mercer countywide Keep It Local networking campaign. She is most proud of forging the growing subcenter offering a full complement of technical assistance and training delivered in Spanish. An expert in sales and business development, recent success includes door to door walking tours outreaching to businesses community by community. An award winning leader her recognitions include the US Small Business Administration Innovation Center Award, featured as a 2010 njbiz Magazine Mover and Shaker, 2 time New Jersey Association of Women Business Owners award winner as well as Metropolitan Trenton African American Chamber of Commerce and Middlesex County Regional Chamber of Commerce Business Woman of the Year and Trenton’s Small Business Advocate of the Year. Recently she was acknowledged in the book “The Birth of a Brand” by UGGS boots.

Lilian Mauro
Assistant Regional Director, County/Spanish Program Coordinator
Phone: (609) 771-2096
Fax: (609) 637-5217

Kathy Anderson
Business Coordinator
Phone: (609) 771-2947
Fax: (609) 637-5217

Our Consultants

Reina Valenzuela - America's Small Business Development Center at The College of New Jersey Mercer CountyReina Valenzuela
Starfish*Global, LLC
Fair Lawn, NJ
(609) 437-3357

  • CEO of Starfish*Global, LLC, a management consulting firm for small minority-owned businesses experiencing growing pains
  • Coaches professionals and entrepreneurs on how to start, manage, and expand their presence on main street, global markets, and the worldwide web
  • Organizes and presents workshops and seminars in Spanish/English to help Latinos use technology for professional growth and business development
  • Consultora del Centro de Desarrollo para la Pequeña Empresa – NJ SBDC Business Consultant catering to Hispanic businesses in Mercer County
  • Awarded MBA in Global Management from Kean University
  • Featured entrepreneur in article by Soledad O’Brien on CNN.COM In America Blog and Latina Magazine 2011/2012
  • Board Member of Latinos in Social Media (LATISM), the largest organization of Latino professionals engaged in social media
  • Social and business entrepreneur passionate about community building online and on the ground

Shakira M. Brown - America's Small Business Development Center at The College of New Jersey Mercer CountyShakira M. Brown
SMB Strategic Media
(888) 436-0033

Shakira is a 13 time award-winning public relations, corporate communications and branding professional with over 20 years of experience leading external and internal communications strategies for various small businesses, corporations and professional services firms. She has been featured as an expert in PRWeek, BrandWeek, Woman’s World, Working Mother,, Black Enterprise, US 1 Princeton Magazines, Jersey 101.5 FM, MidJersey Business Magazine, AOL Money & Finance, Plastic Surgery, Practice Advisor, NJBIZ and among many others. Shakira is also the host of the weekly small business podcast, “Moment Masters Show” available on iTunes and Google Play. She is also a noted professional speaker on branding, social media and small business strategy.

How Can We Help You?

Click Here to Request No Cost Business Counseling with one of our business counselors.
Solicite un Asesoría Individual Gratuita Aquí.

Or call us directly:
(609) 771-2947 (English)
(609) 771-2096 (Spanish)

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