New D.C. Small Business Agency Head

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Angie Gates of the Office of Cable Television, Film, Music and Entertainment and Kristi Whitfield of the Department of Small and Local Business Development. Courtesy Angie Gates.

A new director of the District’s Department of Small and Local Business Development was welcomed last month. She is Kristi Whitfield, “an executive, an entrepreneur, and an urban planner with over 20 years of experience implementing change,” according to the DSLBD.

The agency oversees a wide range of programs and initiatives to help small businesses thrive in the District, from ExportDC to the Procurement Technical Assistance Center to a Certified Business Enterprise program. But the most relevant to Georgetown currently are the DSLBD’s neighborhood revitalization services.

Grants in the neighborhood revitalization area fund three of Georgetown’s most visible and growing initiatives:

  • Business Improvement Districts. DSLBD certifies and recertifies all the Business Improvement Districts in D.C.
  • Clean Teams. DSLBD cleans the sidewalks and removes graffiti in designated retail corridors.
  • Main Streets. DSLBD provides technical assistance and grants to community leaders seeking to use the Main Street Four Point Approach to revitalize their commercial districts.

A $175,000 grant for Georgetown’s new Main Street program was approved last October.

Whitfield “joined the ranks of entrepreneurs in 2006 first as a consultant, then at the helm of a transportation and logistics company, and most recently as the co-founder of Curbside Cupcakes,” according to the DSLBD. “Based on these experiences, Kristi is passionate about driving resources to small businesses and helping them grow.”

 

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