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W&M to present strategies for businesses to weather financial crisis

(Williamsburg, Va.) – The College of William and Mary’s Technology and Business Center, with the Mason School of Business, the Greater Williamsburg Chamber and Tourism Alliance, will present a financial seminar “Surviving the Credit Crunch – a Guide for Success” Dec. 9 from 7:30 a.m. to noon at the Williamsburg Woodlands Conference Center in partnership with Historic Triangle Economic Development. The seminar is free and open to the public. Members of the community who would like to participate may register by email at or by calling 757.229.6511.

“The predominance of information relating to current economic conditions has focused on the national level.  Small businesses in Williamsburg need to know how the national situation will translate to our market and what tools are available here that can help us weather the downturn.  This workshop is intended to do just that, to allow small businesses to understand the situation and find means of acting positively,” said Richard A. Schreiber, President and CEO of the Greater Williamsburg Chamber & Tourism Alliance.

The seminar will feature Vladimir Atanasov, assistant professor of finance and Hector Guerrero, associate professor of business, both from the Mason School of Business. Atanasov will provide a “layman’s guide” to Wall Street’s recent financial meltdown and address how this crisis could affect Williamsburg’s “main street.” Guerrero will moderate a panel discussion with local financial institutions on the strategies and tactics local businesses can use in their fiscal planning moving forward.

Guerrero is the former director of the College of William and Mary Full-time MBA Program. Before coming to William and Mary he taught at Dartmouth College and Notre Dame. Prior to joining the ranks of academia he was an electrical engineer with firms such as Lockheed Martin. Atanasov teaches MBA classes in money and debt markets and financial management. Prior to coming to William and Mary he taught at Babson College and Penn State.

William Bean, director of the Technology and Business Center, will moderate a second panel discussion providing background on the wide range of services available to businesses in the Greater Williamsburg area. This panel will include presentations from Ken Carr, president of the Senior Core of Retired Executives (SCORE); Deborah Wright, director of the Small Business Development Center (SBDC) and Joe Moore, director of the Procurement Technical Assistance Center (PTAC); Joe Adams, regional director of the Export Division of the Virginia Economic Development Partnership (VEDP) and Kathy Dolan of the Virginia Department of Business Assistance.  The session will include background on how these and other organizations can help area businesses with finance, general assistance, state and federal contracting, exporting.

“We are excited to bring this seminar to our local business community. It will provide a great opportunity for them to learn about how the current credit and financial situation could affect them. And, they will be able to hear from and to and to meet with area financial and business service providers who can provide important financial and business assistance,” Bean said.

The Technology and Business Center at the College of William and Mary is part of the office of economic development. It was established to foster economic growth by helping technology-related businesses develop in the Peninsula area.  The Center offers intellectual capital and business resources to entrepreneurs and early stage technology companies.  Their support services include mentoring, financial and management consultations as well as infrastructure support.