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Dear Santa Rosa City Council Members,

I am a Social Media Educator & Consultant here in Santa Rosa and I’ve been watching New York City forge a path of digital resources for small business owners. They have specifically chosen to be proactive and provide a tremendous amount of opportunities for their business owning citizens: NYC Business Express, new wifi units all over the city, opening Cornell NYC Tech, new workforce veteran’s career center, and more. I think we can do a lot to support our local business owners and today they released a new program of which I want you to be aware.

New York City’s Press Release
http://on.nyc.gov/Oni2nO
NYC “today launched a new set of free tools to help small businesses in New York City use digital technologies and social media to grow their businesses and create jobs. The new set of resources is called the Small Business Digital Toolkit. Through a partnership with NYC Digital, the Department of Small Business Services will offer small businesses free training and resources to digitally attract customers, conduct business online and market their products or services through the use of e-commerce technology.”

Small Business Digital Toolkit Initiative (easy reading version)
http://mashable.com/2012/08/23/nyc-digital-toolkit-smbs/

NYC’s Digital Roadmap of Progress & Innovation 
http://www.nyc.gov/html/digital/html/roadmap/roadmap.shtml

I understand that job creation and growth is important in all communities. I am also painfully aware of lack of funds but I know that we have a ready and willing tech community that can help grow these types of programs right here at home. I am doing what I can to ensure that those working (and not working) have the technology skill set they need in order to thrive. Please know that any effort the city can put into this kind of an initiative will only do more to help Santa Rosa succeed.

In service,
Kerry Rego

cc: Mayor Ernesto Olivares, Vice Mayor John Sawyer, Scott Bartley, Jake Ours, Marsha Vas Dupre, Gary Wysocky, Danielle O’Leary, Rachel Haot

4 replies
  1. Joshua R. Simmons
    Joshua R. Simmons says:

    Very cool. Did not know about these NYC programs. While Santa Rosa clearly doesn’t have the tax base or population density to support that level of proactivity… there is a lot that can be done on a shoestring budget, and we are already doing a lot.

    I think the City of Santa Rosa, and/or Sonoma County, would do well to invest in preexisting programs, such as: North Bay iHub, Web & Interactive Media Pros, BEST, SCORE, SBDC, Sebastopol Entrepreneurs Project, and the ShareExchange.

    Reply
    • Kerry Rego
      Kerry Rego says:

      There are so many wonderful programs available but they aren’t being supported by the City. They need cohesive structure and the seal of approval from the City. They also need to be promoted by the City to business owners.

      Reply
  2. Mike Cook
    Mike Cook says:

    Kerry,

    New York City has made a huge step forward for their small businesses. As yu know, small businesses account for almost 90% of job growth in any economy, but especially (and more) in a lagging economy. As I am not a tech savvy person, how do we do this? Who at the City would take this on?

    As you know, I am running for City Council in Santa Rosa and in full disclosure for others have used your servcies for my campaign.

    With this known, I see major opportunities for the City to continue to reach out to their small businesses and offer services such as these. As was said by Joshua, Santa Rosa is not as big or with as big of a budget than New York City, but, this isn’t an excuse, it’ an opportunity to find a more effective and efficient way of doing this exact same thing.

    Please let me know how I can help!

    Reply
    • Kerry Rego
      Kerry Rego says:

      Hi, Mike!

      I have been really inspired by New York City’s vision and knew it was something we could do as well. Mayor Ernesto Olivares was immediately responsive and made sure the right people saw the information I provided. I’ve already spoken with Danielle O’Leary, the city’s economic development manager, and we have a good idea of how to proceed. I’m just so pleased that the city was receptive to the idea.

      Your willingness is much appreciated and we’ll surely be in touch when we have a greater idea of our needs.

      Thanks ~ Kerry

      Reply

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