National Recognition for
SC Small Business Development Center Consultant
Greenville, SC—Melissa Thomas, business consultant with the Greenville Area SBDC, was recently honored as the State Star for South Carolina. Thomas was recognized in a ceremony at the Association of Small Business Development Centers conference in San Diego for her significant contributions to business development in South Carolina.
As a business consultant with the Greenville Area SBDC, Thomas helps those with an existing business to become more productive and profitable. She also assists would-be entrepreneurs in their dreams of owning their own business. Thomas, who was nominated by fellow consultants, was noted as being directly responsible for significant positive economic impact measured by the capital investments, jobs created and jobs saved through her consulting services.
Thomas, who holds an M.A. in public administration from Clemson University, finds the upstate to the entrepreneur friendly. “This area has a lively atmosphere for startups,” she said, recalling one gift and jewelry company client that came to her with fast growth syndrome. “Heart on Your Sleeve Designs went from 54 stores to 1,000 stores in less than nine months. We helped the owner develop supply chains for raw materials that allowed her to keep pace with increasing demand. Expansion calls for increased cash flow and we assisted her in creating a financial approach that worked.”
In addition to individual consulting, Thomas organizes and teaches business seminars for the Greenville Area SBDC. She initiated and runs all the social media programs for her center including Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter and she manages the center’s online presence through their blog, GreenvilleSBDC.wordpress.com.
A cancer survivor, Thomas founded and owns Key Fobs for a Cure, a small business she established to raise funds for cancer research. Undaunted by her cancer battle, Thomas continues to be active in the business community donating her time to a number of chambers of commerce and the Greenville Technical College Marketing Advisory Board.
The Greenville Area SBDC is one of seventeen service centers that make up the statewide network of South Carolina Small Business Development Centers.