North Line GIS

North Line GIS was founded in October 2006 by Mike George and Trip McLaughlin after seeing a need for a GIS business to service the needs of the local community as well as the western slope of Colorado. Both Mike and Trip were employed full-time by others at the time of the start-up, so they were able to start the company with personal funds while building the business.

Although both founders have extensive experience as geographers, they needed assistance with ideas for managing and growing the business. After researching available resources, they contacted the SBDC to help them strategize about growing the company. The SBDC director helped them to modify their business plan including identifying metrics crucial to measuring their business success as they worked toward their goals.

In less than six months since the initial contact with the SBDC, Trip is now working full-time with North Line GIS and the company hired three more part-time employees to assist with the work being generated by Trip and Mike.

“We look forward to the opportunities ahead of us and the resources available from the SBDC to help us move forward.” Trip McLaughlin

Leuallen Sales & Service

Kevin Leuallen’s grandfather, Floyde, and father, Charles, inspired him to become an entrepreneur. His father owned various food delivery routes, a donut store, a mini storage, a miniature golf course, and a liquor store along with A & W and Dairy Cream restaurants in Rifle, Colorado. As a young boy working for his grandfather, Kevin used to help out in his restaurants . Kevin also helped his dad deliver Holsom Bread in the Rifle, Colorado

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Southern Ute Cultural Museum

Lynn Brittner, Executive Director, started planning the Southern-Ute Cultural Center and Museum over ten years ago. The Center’s opening this past May was her reward for years of dedicatedly holding the vision. Brittner’s relationship with the Southwest Colorado Small Business Development Center started way back at the beginning. She needed help and only had three staff. A grant from the Administration for Native Americans provided funds for her to take Board members to visit other

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Express Employment Professionals

For Nina Anderson, helping people has always been a passion. Nina is the owner of Express Employment Professionals in Grand Junction, CO. Express offers a wide range of services for job seekers and employers and is a national chain. The job seekers can have their job skills evaluated so they know what skills they need training in and then can be matched with an employer that meets the job seeker’s skill set and career preference.

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The Rock Lounge

Marcus Garcia has been the owner of the Rock Lounge (RL), an indoor climbing gym in Durango, since 2014. Marcus had transitioned from being a RL employee, a rock climbing guide, and owner of a small construction company before then. The RL was profitable in his first year, yet he thought there was more potential to be realized. Marcus had sent his business manager to a locally sponsored event which introduced them to the Small

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Espinoza Cultural Services

A small business based in La Jara is proving that a San Luis Valley company can ‘play with the big boys’. Dee Espinoza founded Espinoza Cultural Services, LLC (ECS) in 2010. Espinoza ran the company by herself out of her La Jara home for the first 2 years. She now employs 13 full time professionals (although some are seasonal) and 3 part time. ECS recently purchased and renovated a vacant historic building in downtown La

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Meier Skis

“The whole idea is to keep it as local as possible,” says Matt Cudmore who started Meier Skis in 2009. “We emphasize home-grown, local wood and a product coming right out of Glenwood Springs.” Matt, who had been making skateboards for several years, began making the skis using primarily Colorado-grown beetle kill pine, working in a one-car garage. As the story goes, he gave up searching for “the next perfect ski” and decided to build

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