Creston man earns national award

Published: Wednesday, May 15, 2013 10:13 a.m. CDT

AMES — Dave McLaren, regional director of the Iowa Small Business Development Center at Southwestern Community College, was named the 2013 Iowa “State Star” by the national Association of Small Business Development Centers (America’s SBDC).

America’s SBDC annually recognizes Small Business Development Center (SBDC) personnel for demonstrating exemplary work performance, significantly contributing to the organization’s economic development efforts and showing a strong commitment to small businesses.

McLaren, who’s been with the organization since October 2006, was nominated by his associates for this honor. He will be recognized at a special reception to be held during the America’s SBDC national fall conference in Orlando, Fla., in September.

“Dave has been providing valuable assistance and identifying new opportunities for the small businesses in his rural region in southwest Iowa since he started with our organization,” said Iowa SBDC State Director Jim Heckmann. “He is well-known for his willingness to take on special projects, his financial expertise and his dedication to his clients. He very much deserves this national recognition.”

“I knew Dave was highly respected throughout our service area, but this award shows that his expertise is recognized statewide,” said Tom Lesan, vice president of economic development for Southwestern Community College.

Past recipients of the award include the former state director, former associate state director, former regional directors from Mason City and Waterloo and current regional directors from Council Bluffs, Fort Dodge, West Des Moines, Iowa City, Spencer, Dubuque and Marion.

The Iowa Small Business Development Center is an outreach program of Iowa State University’s College of Business. Partially funded by the U.S. Small Business Administration, the organization has 16 regional assistance centers located strategically across the state. Since program inception in 1981, the center has helped hundreds of thousands of Iowa businesses and entrepreneurs through free, customized, professional business counseling and practical, affordable training.

For more information on Iowa Small Business Development Center programs or services, call 515-294-2030 or visit

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