Isabel Guzmán Becomes the New Leader of the Small Business Administration

Isabel Guzmán BeLatina Latinx
Photo courtesy of El Nacional.

Last Tuesday, the Senate confirmed Isabel Guzmán as director of the Small Business Administration, making her the first Latina to hold the post.

Much of her responsibility will be to help overcome the damage caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.

The House approved her appointment in an 81-17 vote, CNBC reported.

Isabel Guzmán’s experience as director of California’s Office of Small Businesses overseeing aid to businesses in the nation’s largest state during the pandemic makes her the ideal candidate to address the worst public health crisis in decades.

Guzmán will oversee the implementation of the Paycheck Protection Program and other relief initiatives that sum up to $687 billion, which have saved businesses but have been fraught with inefficiency and waste.

Guzmán has a long history in public service, having served as deputy chief of staff during the Obama administration. Her experience and professionalism has earned her the support of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and other national business groups.

“I have every confidence that under Ms. Guzmán’s leadership, the SBA will help small business owners hold on to their dreams until the economy comes roaring back,” Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., said earlier Tuesday.

Of the 23 Cabinet-level positions in the Biden Administration, only 18 have been filed so far. This same week, the Senate confirmed Deb Haaland, the first Native American Cabinet secretary in U.S. history, on March 15. That’s not all; it is presumed that this week Katherina Tai will be voted on by the Senate to be the United States Trade Representative and Xavier Becerra to be the Secretary of Health and Human Services. 

During Isabel Guzmán’s Senate confirmation hearing last month, she said she was “deeply committed to helping to support our nation’s small businesses and entrepreneurs. They are facing an unprecedented crisis and need our support to survive.”

Her goals include improving equity in distributing small business aid, something she will be doing with this new title. Not only is it a light at the end of the tunnel for people who desperately need any help that can come their way, but it is also great to see a Latina leading us on this project, considering Latinos have been one of the demographics most impacted by the pandemic. Congratulations to Isabel Guzmán!