Davids-Hagedorn “Women’s Business Centers Improvements Act” Passes House, Advances to Senate

October 21, 2019
Press Release

WASHINGTON – This evening, H.R. 4405, the “Women’s Business Center Improvements Act of 2019,” authored by Rep. Sharice Davids (KS-03) and co-authored by Rep. Jim Hagedorn (MN-01), passed the House of Representatives by unanimous consent.

This bipartisan legislation supports women entrepreneurs nationwide by modernizing and strengthening the Small Business Administration’s Women’s Business Centers (WBC) program.

The bill increases access to training, counseling and assistance plans, capital, business development, and workforce investment that is essential to creating new businesses, expanding enterprises and the U.S. economy. The measure now moves to the Senate for further consideration.

“I am incredibly proud of the bipartisan nature of this small business bill. Enhancing Women’s Business Centers will help foster a new generation of women business leaders, further expand our economy, and help hardworking Americans achieve their goals and dreams. Thanks to Congresswoman Davids for championing and managing H.R. 4405. I am proud to stand with Rep. Davids to promote women-owned enterprises. And thanks to House Small Business Committee Chairwoman Velázquez and Ranking Member Chabot for their bipartisan support,” Hagedorn said.

“Women are the fastest growing sector of entrepreneurs, but many unique challenges still exist for women, particularly women of color, to start and grow a business. By properly funding Women’s Business Centers, we can increase access to vital counseling and training services for female small business owners that help set them up for success. That’s why I am so proud the House passed this bipartisan legislation, and I urge my colleagues in the Senate to do the same so we can help create a fair playing field for female entrepreneurs,” said Davids.

“This important legislation provides increased support and updates to the Women's Business Centers program that trained over 114,000 clients last year. I thank Representative Hagedorn for his leadership on this bill and congratulate him on its passage,” said House Small Business Committee Ranking Member Rep. Steve Chabot (OH-01).

“This is an opportunity to expand consulting and training opportunities for women in order to diversify our entrepreneurial ecosystem. We are seeing an increase in the number of women seeking autonomy from traditional employment paths, which has resulted in wanting to run their own business. This bill provides an avenue for women, many of whom have been typically underrepresented, to gain the skills necessary to be successful in this global economic market,” said Dr. Jennifer Wilson, Interim Director, Southeast Minnesota Small Business Development Center.

Rep. Hagedorn speaks in support of Women's Business Centers with H.R. 4405.

Jim Hagedorn was elected in 2018 to represent Minnesota’s First District in the U.S. House of Representatives. He grew up on his family’s grain and livestock farm near Truman. Jim’s father, former U.S. Congressman Tom Hagedorn (MN-02), grandfather, and great-grandfather were all southern Minnesota farmers. Jim currently resides in the rural farming community of Blue Earth. Hagedorn brings policy experience to Capitol Hill from time spent as a congressional aide to former U.S. Congressman Arlan Stangeland (MN-07) and a congressional relations officer for two non-partisan U.S. Department of the Treasury agencies. Hagedorn serves on the House Committees on Agriculture and Small Business to promote farming, Main Street enterprises and southern Minnesota’s way of life.