Rural Enterprises of Oklahoma Women's Business Program Expands Statewide

Article excerpt

In 2001, Rural Enterprises of Oklahoma opened its Women's Business Center in Durant to assist women in 21 rural Oklahoma counties start and operate small businesses.

With the assistance of the U.S. Small Business Administration, the center worked with women providing mentoring, technical assistance, counseling, financial assistance and marketing. The program was so successful that the SBA not only continued the program in the 21 counties but has now provided funding to expand the program statewide.

REI has opened a new Women's Business Center office in the Presbyterian Health Foundation Complex in Oklahoma City. A ribbon- cutting for the new office was last week.

"The grant award from the U.S. Small Business Administration correlates well with our other economic development services already available statewide," said Tom Seth Smith, REI president and CEO. "Since we are a statewide economic development firm, this is a perfect fit for us."

Mary Ramsey has been named the coordinator in the Oklahoma City office. She will assist REI's economic development professionals in coordinating activities and efforts with the original Women Business Center at REI's headquarters in Durant. …