Center Profile

Founded: 1983
Counties: Bedford, Blair, Cambria, Fulton, Huntingdon, and Somerset

Staff Profile

Barry Surma

Barry Surma

Barry Surma
Director


Barry Surma, who appointed as the Director of the Saint Francis SBDC in February of 2016, has more than 30 years of experience in the economic development profession.  Prior to being named as SBDC Director, he spent the last 22 years working for the Altoona-Blair county Development Corporation.  There, he served in several capacities including the Vice President of Finance and Chief Financial Officer, Executive Director of the Blair County Industrial Development Authority, and Executive Director of the Blair County General Authority. 


During his tenure at ABCD Corp., Barry processed the organization’s economic development loan programs and presented them various funding agencies including the Small Business Administration, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Pennsylvania Industrial Development Authority, and regional/local development agencies.  In that capacity, he structured economic development financing packages ranging from less than $5,000 to more than $40 million; many times with economic development funding from multiple programs.  Based on ABCD Corp.’s track record in developing successful PIDA projects, Barry was one of several Industrial Development Corporation staff members that worked with the Department of Community and Economic Development to review and develop updated underwriting and servicing guidelines for DCED financing programs.  He was also part of a working group that recommended changes to how DCED established and reset interest rates for its loan programs. 


In addition to his expertise in structuring economic development financing projects, Barry has been involved with multiple real estate development efforts including several industrial and business parks, built to suit construction projects, and building renovation projects.  For those projects, he developed real estate pricing parameters and structured the financial sections for many real estate leases including synthetic leases that ABCD Corp. developed for specific clients. 


Barry received both his BS in Accounting and MBA from Saint Francis University.  He earned his designation as a Certified Economic Developer (CEcD) from the International Economic Development Council (IEDC).  Presently, Barry is one of less than 1,200 economic or real estate development professionals worldwide to hold the CEcD accreditation.  He has spoken before various audiences about economic development financing topics including the Council of Development Finance Agencies, Pennsylvania Economic Development Association, and Western Pennsylvania Association of Small Business Administration Guaranteed Lenders. 

Jeff Boldizar
Business Consultant


Jeff has been employed with the Saint Francis University Small Business Development Center since May 1985.  He has more than 31 years of business development experience.  He provides these services primarily to businesses in Blair, Bedford and Huntingdon Counties.


 Jeff served as a Business Analyst at the Center from May 1985 through April 1997.  He provides a variety of services to all types of businesses including start-up procedures, business planning, financial analysis, loan packaging, marketing/advertising and research.


In April 1997, he became the Center’s Senior Business Consultant.  In addition to serving as a Business Analyst, he also oversees the activities of the other consultants and student assistants.  Jeff is also a member of the PASBDC’s Technology Team.


Jeff is a graduate of Saint Francis University with a BS in Economics.  He is the longest serving full-time employee in the PASBDC system.

Annette Chunko
Business Analyst
 

Annette has been with St. Francis University since 1999.  She brings over 35 years of business experience including retail, marketing, advertising, research, business planning, financial projections and analysis.  The counties that she serves are mainly the Cambria and Somerset area providing confidential free one-on-one consulting to current and prospective entrepreneurs. 


Annette has worked with clients in different industries and has assisted clients in accessing their idea, developing their business proposal including detailed financial projections.  She has also assisted in the research and general management assistance to small business. 


Prior to joining SFU SBDC, Annette worked at Kent State University-Stark SBDC as the Coordinator. She also was Vice President of Research and Business Retention, Stark Development Board along with a business instructor in the Adult Education Program.  Annette is a St. Francis University graduate earning a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration/Management.  She has hands on small business experience growing up in a family owned and operated grocery store.

Dorothy Eckenrode
Administrative Assistant


Dorothy Eckenrode has been with the SBDC since 1987. She serves as Administrative Assistant  at the Center.   She is the first point of contact for SBDC clients and visitors.  She is involved in the daily operation of the center.

    • saintfrancis
Saint Francis Univ. SBDC
P.O. Box 600
Loretto, PA 15940-0600
(814) 472-3200
 
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The First Step: Pre-Business Planning Workshop

Workshop covers the basic information needed to start a business, such as business and marketing plans, financing, types of business structures and rules and regulations.