Rande Kessler

State Director

An engineering graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy, with a Master’s Degree in Personnel Management, Rande is responsible for directing, managing, promoting, and evaluating LSBDC services to improve service delivery and impact.

Rande joined the LSBDC in 2012 as the Center Director for the LSBDC at LSU Shreveport. In July of 2013, he was appointed to State Director. Prior to joining the LSBDC, Rande had 30 years of management experience in both small and large corporate business environments. After serving in the Navy as a Diving and Salvage Special Operations Officer, he spent the next 20 years with Michelin Tire Corporation, evolving from a project engineer to a plant manager.

After Michelin, he led the start-up and operation of an erosion control and coastal property protection company called Advanced Coastal Technologies. This small company completed large project installations in the U.S. and abroad. Also for several years, Rande owned and managed Body Construction, an aerobics and general fitness facility.

His experience in engineering and operations management from both a small business and a large corporate view will provide insight for the for small businesses across Louisiana.



Bryan Greenwood, MBA

Associate State Director - Programmatic

Bryan Greenwood, Associate State Director - Programmatic of the Louisiana Small Business Development Center has worked with entrepreneurs and small business owners for more than 10 years. Greenwood primarily works in the areas of strategic and business planning, technology commercialization, business process analysis, and financial analysis and modeling.

Bryan also works with entrepreneurs in accessing capital by assisting them with the development of the information needed to obtain debt or equity capital financing and has assisted more than 200 entrepreneurs and small business owners statewide in a variety of industries and areas. In addition to providing business management consulting services, Greenwood has conducted training events in the areas of strategic planning, business planning, finance, marketing, and business operations. He has served on the LSU Stephenson Entrepreneur Institute faculty as an instructor, teaching MGMT 2000: Innovation and Creativity and MGMT 3111: Business Planning courses.

Greenwood earned both his MBA and a Bachelor of Science in Finance from LSU. Aside from his primary duties, he does an extensive amount of public speaking on behalf of the LSBDC Technology Center at LSU and the LBTC. Greenwood plays an active role in community endeavors, providing services and boosting awareness of what the LSBDC and LBTC can offer to entrepreneurs and prospective business incubator tenants. He recruits companies to participate in case‐projects, even arranging and managing training events and seminars that promote small business growth and foster the creation of new jobs.

Previously, Greenwood was a commercial loan officer with three financial institutions where he focused on small and medium size businesses providing loan and treasury service products. Greenwood is a certified FastTrac™ Facilitator by Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation and is a member of the National Business Incubation Association (NBIA), the Association of Small Business Development Centers, Risk Management Association (RMA), and Louisiana Industrial Development Executives Association (LIDEA).

Greenwood performs community outreach and public speaking activities, lectures in business classes, recruits companies to take part in classroom case‐projects, organizes training events, and works with economic development groups to promote the startup, growth, and development of small businesses and the commercialization of new products, thereby creating jobs for Louisiana.



Justin Downs, MBA

Associate State Director - Financial

Justin Downs is the Associate State Director - Financial for the Louisiana Small Business Development Center. He is a native of Denham Springs, La and earned his BS in Accounting from the University of Arkansas at Monticello in 2012 and his MBA from the University of Louisiana at Monroe in 2013. Justin joined the LSBDC in 2014 as the Financial Manager and after successful financial reviews and hard work was promoted to Associate State Director - Financial in November 2017.

Justin oversees all budgetary, contractual, and financial management matters of the program, providing training and guidance to center directors and financial personnel while maintaining responsibility of all grant activity, and involvement in policy issues and resource allocation.

In 2015, Justin helped the LSBDC successfully complete an on-site Accreditation review with no findings conducted by the America's SBDC Accreditation team. In the same year, the U.S. Small Business Administration conducted its biennial examination and Justin helped successfully complete it with no findings, and then again in 2017.

Justin has played a major role in the America's SBDC Millennial Conference "Maximizing Millennial Minds" where he serves as a committee member, and has been a panel facilitator and speaker at the America's SBDC National Conference in 2016 and 2017.

Prior to joining the LSBDC in January 2014, Justin worked as a staff accountant at Huffman & Soignier, CPA, Internal Auditor at the University of Louisiana at Monroe as a Graduate Assistant, and intern-accountant at Intermountain Management.

Justin is also an active member of Twin Cities Rotary Club in Ouachita Parish. He was also nominated, in 2016, as a Northeast Louisiana Top 20 Under 40 Professional.

Justin was an active member of the Institute of Management Accountants, the Masters of Business Administration Association and the Student Government Association; he served as a member and senator. Justin also lettered in football all four years at UAM (Team Captain 2011) and volunteered in the Special Olympics, Southeast Arkansas Division and Monticello Elementary School, promoting fitness and obese awareness.



Barry W. Parker, MBA

Special Projects Director

Barry W. Parker is the LSBDC Special Projects Director including the Business Continuity program. His professional experience has focused on areas of technology, risk, and operations management serving in roles ranging from a private consultant to small business to the National Business Continuity Manager for a multi-national banking firm.

Joining the LSBDC following Hurricane Katrina in 2005, Barry established the LSBDC emergency response call center in support of the statewide recovery efforts. Since that time, he has worked closely with the SBA Field Operation Centers to streamline response times and coordinate the LSBDC response to a litany of natural and manmade disasters. He has also worked extensively with the small business clients focusing in areas of risk management and strategic planning. He has developed training materials and instructional programs for the LSBDC related to emergency preparedness and response. In 2012, the LSBDC Business Continuity program was identified as a national "best practice" and the model adopted by numerous states.

Barry chairs the Disaster Interest Group for the Association of Small Business Development Centers (ASBDC) and has presented several times at the ASBDC national conference on topics related to small business emergency preparedness.

Barry completed his BBA in Data Processing from Northeast Louisiana University, and his MBA from the University of Louisiana at Monroe.



DeRon Talley

Marketing & Media Manager

DeRon Talley is the Marketing & Media Manager for the Louisiana Small Business Development Centers (LSBDC) State Office. He is a native of Folsom, La. and a 2012 Bachelor’s Degree recipient in the field of Mass Communications from the University of Louisiana at Monroe (ULM). DeRon joined the LSBDC in 2015 as the Communications Specialist and served in that role until July 2017.

DeRon manages and directs the statewide marketing, media and communications activities of the LSBDC, and maintains and monitors all digital components of the LSBDC such as social media platforms and websites, and also contribute media releases and other public-sought information.

During his time at the LSBDC, DeRon created and leads the America's Small Business Development Centers (America's SBDC) Millennial Conference "Maximizing Millennial Minds," and serves as a member of the America's SBDC Marketing Committee. Using this platform, DeRon has been a speaker at the America's SBDC National Conference speaking on marketing topics and millennial generation topics.

For Louisiana specifically, DeRon developed an initiative during Global Entrepreneurship Week 2016 for the LSBDC service centers to educate the millennial generation on entrepreneurship and economy. Through seven events taking place online and in-person, the LSBDC service centers reached nearly 9,000 participants who engaged in the millennial and technology focused entrepreneur workshops.

Prior to joining the LSBDC in May of 2015, DeRon served concurrently as the Editor of two Ascension Parish newspapers, the Donaldsonville Chief and the Gonzales Weekly Citizen. As the Editor of the Donaldsonville Chief and Gonzales Weekly Citizen newspapers concurrently, he and his editorial team earned more than a dozen Louisiana Press Association awards, with Talley carrying the bulk of nine individual awards. Talley was the youngest and first black male to serve as the Editor of both papers, being a role model for aspiring minority journalists.

DeRon is an active member of Rotary International, where he served as President of Twin Cities Rotary Ouachita Parish (2017-2018). He is also a graduate of Leadership Ouachita and was selected as the Charles McDonald "Twice As Much Kindness Award," which recognizes one person for caring twice as much, be twice as kind, and work twice as hard throughout the yearlong class. Talley and his wife, Patience, also founded and own Journey 4 Success, which is a non-profit organization that helps young adults and teens develop life skills, inform them of opportunities, and empower their minds for a confident self.



Sherry Phelps

Grants Coordinator, Office Manager

As Grants Coordinator, Sherry Phelps assists in the preparation of proposals of grants from federal and state granting agencies, helps prepare contracts with affiliated universities hosting Small Business Development Centers, as well as with individuals and other entities, and prepares resource materials. As Office Manager, she provides administrative, office management and customer service support to the LSBDC State Office.
 
Sherry has been with the LSBDC State Office since 2008. She attended Louisiana Tech University and has sixteen years of experience in Banking and seven years of Recruiting/Human Resource Generalist experience.  

 



Rebecca Camp

Grants Accountant

Rebecca Camp is the Grants Accountant for the LSBDC.  She is responsible for the operations of post-award administration. She is responsible for the AP/AR, Payroll, Grants Reconciliation, and Travel for the state office and Individual Center Invoicing for the SBDC centers in Louisiana. She has extensive experience in the field, including serving as a public accountant, with responsibilities spanning audit, tax, financial reporting and business management.

She has been with the LSBDC for 2 years. She is a graduate of University of Southern Mississippi, with a Business and Finance Degree. In 1986, her career began when she partnered in starting, building and operating every aspect of a Temporary/Permanent employment agency in Mississippi.  In 1996, she married and moved to Louisiana with her husband, selling the business in 2000.  Moving to Louisiana she began working with a private CPA firm.

Before coming to the LSBDC she spent 7 years working for the Ouachita Parish School System.

She and her husband reside in Calhoun, Louisiana with their 4 children.  Where they are active in the community and First West. 



Roman Starns

Senior Business Consultant

Roman Starns brings over 20 years of experience as an entrepreneur and small business owner to the LBSDC as a Business Consultant. He has expertise in leadership and a vast knowledge of finance, financial planning, human resource management, marketing, strategic planning, accounting, business growth and development and seeks to provide quality advice and support to Louisiana business owners.

He was awarded an MBA from Louisiana State University's E.J. Ourso College of Business with a 4.0 GPA and Beta Gamma Sigma Honors. Roman also possesses a Bachelor's Degree from LSU where he proudly served as a Senior Co-Captain on the LSU Fighting Tiger Football team and is a permanent member of the LSU National “L Club” as a Varsity Football Letterman.



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The Louisiana Small Business Development Center Network, hosted by Louisiana Delta Community College, is a member of the National Association of Small Business Development Centers and funded in part through a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration, Louisiana Economic Development and participating universities. All SBA programs are extended to the public on a nondiscriminatory basis. All opinions, conclusions or recommendations expressed are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the SBA. Reasonable accommodations for persons with disabilities and/or limited English proficiency will be made if requested at least two weeks in advance.
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