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SBA Leader Reflects On Business Lessons Learned

Written by Jenna Weiner
Published: 11/4/2010

Karen G. Mills says her family's business taught her important values

In a recent interview, the head of the U.S. Small Business Administration revealed how she had gotten to where she is today and what she hoped to accomplish in the future.

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Karen G. Mills, who was appointed by President Barack Obama as the administrator of the SBA, sat down with the Washington Post recently and said that she had learned important business lessons from her family, especially her grandfather. She said that her grandfather, who started the now-famous Tootsie Roll candy brand, taught her the importance of becoming a business leader.

"I grew up in a family business, and we would talk about business around the kitchen table," Mills said. "My grandfather came to this country as an immigrant without resources and built a business over a number of years, and he used to tell me that this was the most important thing in America and it was the most important thing for me to do. That spirit is the same one that I see in the business owners that I meet every day all over the country."

Mills made other news for entrepreneurs recently when she reminded small business owners to be prepared for any unforeseen emergency. As part of National Preparedness Month, Mills said that small businesses must do everything in their power to plan for the unexpected.

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