The Travelers Institute Chooses Charlotte for Next Small Business – Big Opportunity

December 16, 2014

National symposia series addresses challenges facing small businesses

CHARLOTTE, N.C.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- The Travelers Institute, the public policy division of The Travelers Companies, Inc. (NYSE: TRV), today will hold its next Small Business – Big Opportunity℠ symposium at the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond’s Charlotte, N.C., branch. In partnership with the Charlotte Chamber and City Startup Labs, the event will convene public policymakers, industry advocates and local small business owners to promote small business success.

“As one of the nation’s largest insurers of small businesses, we are committed to fostering productive discussion to help them thrive,” said Joan Woodward, President of Travelers Institute and Executive Vice President of Public Policy at Travelers. “From access to capital to complex regulations, Travelers is convening thought leaders to help entrepreneurs navigate challenges they face.”

Matthew Martin, Regional Executive, Charlotte Branch, Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, will deliver a keynote address exploring the national and regional economic outlook.

Woodward will lead a panel discussion focusing on strategies for accessing capital in the current lending environment, cybersecurity concerns and navigating the regulatory landscape. The panel will include the following industry professionals:

  • Lynn Douthett, District Director, North Carolina District Office, U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA);
  • Michael Echols, Director, Joint Program Management Office, Cybersecurity and Communications, Department of Homeland Security;
  • Jeff Haney, President & Partner, ECM Solutions; and
  • Anika Kahn, Director & Senior Economist, Wells Fargo

Immediately following the program, the SBA will present a $50,000 award to City Startup Labs for the SBA’s first Growth Accelerator Fund competition.

To learn more about the series and Travelers’ small business advocacy, please visit the Travelers Institute’s website.

About Charlotte Chamber
The Charlotte Chamber creates competitive advantage by growing the economy, advocating pro-business public policies and delivering innovative programs and services. Its vision is that Charlotte will be the best place to run a business and to live. As a membership organization, it represents the largest network of businesses in Charlotte, N.C.

About City Startup Labs
City Startup Labs (CSL) is a business accelerator delivering training and coaching to young black men (18-34), while guiding them to plan and launch successful ventures, and be catalysts for change in their communities. City Startup Labs also sees teaching entrepreneurship as 21st century vocational training. CSL works in collaboration with the Urban League of Central Carolinas, in Charlotte, N.C.

About Travelers Institute
The Travelers Institute, the public policy division of The Travelers Companies, Inc., engages in discussion and analysis of public policy topics of importance to the insurance marketplace and the financial services industry more broadly. The Travelers Institute draws upon the industry expertise of Travelers’ senior management and the technical expertise of many of Travelers underwriters, risk managers and other experts to provide information, analysis and solutions to public policymakers and regulators. Travelers is a leading provider of property casualty insurance for auto, home and business. For more information, visit

Media Contact:
The Travelers Companies, Inc.
Luke Shane, 860-277-4090

Source: The Travelers Companies, Inc.