Karen Kerrigan: A Record of Service and Leadership for Entrepreneurs and Small Business

By at 30 November, 2018, 10:46 am

SBE Council president & CEO Karen Kerrigan has worked domestically and internationally on policies and initiatives to encourage entrepreneurship and small business growth.

SBE Council president & CEO Karen Kerrigan at a business leader’s meeting in the White House seated next to President Donald Trump, October 2017. Kerrigan has enjoyed a seat at the table across Administrations, and with world leaders to discuss policies that impact entrepreneurship and small business growth.

Select quotes regarding Karen’s work, commitment and leadership, across a variety of platforms and issues:

House Financial Services Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-TX) greets Karen Kerrigan before her testimony on the impact of the “Tax Cuts and Jobs Act” and access to capital issues, July 2018.

“Thank you for all you do on behalf of the small business community.  Most of all, thank you for your friendship and support.  We are lucky to have friends like you working with us on behalf of small business.”

Darryl L. DePriest, Chief Counsel, Office of Advocacy

U.S. Small Business Administration

June 30, 2016


“In appreciation for being a voice for entrepreneurs, a true ambassador for small businesses all over the country. Your tireless vision, tenacity, and leadership has opened doors and paved the way for countless entrepreneurs and small businesses to succeed and grow.”

Women’s Business Border Center

El Paso U.S. Hispanic Chamber of Commerce

June 2016


“On behalf of the U.S. Embassy in Kathmandu, I would like to extend our deepest appreciation to you for sharing your expertise on building a positive ecosystem for entrepreneurship during your visit to Nepal from April 21-26, 2013.  Your engaging presentations and interactions with young entrepreneurs inspired this country’s future business leaders – especially the many bright young women with whom you met – to take the next steps to realize their potential. I know you invested a great deal of time and energy into your work here, building meaningful relationships and understanding the nuances of the Nepali business environment.  This kind of people-to-people diplomacy is invaluable, and we thank you for helping to advance our mission in building understanding between the people of the United States and Nepal.”

Peter W. Bodde, Ambassador, Embassy of the United States of America, NEPAL

April 29, 2013


“I want to applaud Karen Kerrigan for many reasons. First of all CIPE is so fortunate to have Karen as the Chair of the Board. Hers is a record of commitment, leadership, and achievement and we are all fortunate for her long history of engagement…and for everything she has done here at home and around the world to promote and support women’s entrepreneurship.”

Melanne Verveer, Ambassador-at-Large for Global Women’s Issues

June 20, 2011 – Democracy that Delivers for Women Conference, Washington, D.C.

Karen Kerrigan was presented with the “IP Champion for Excellence in Advocacy” award on November 15, 2017 at the U.S. Chamber’s IP Champions annual event. She is pictured here with Billy Gibbons of ZZ Top who performed at the dinner and was also presented with an award.


“As 2010 draws to a close, we want to express our personal and deep appreciation for your service on the Bipartisan Policy Center Debt Reduction Task Force. We can be very proud that we have presented to the American people a solid and well documented plan that will stimulate the economy while stabilizing the debt. The complimentary attention our effort has received has also been gratifying.”

Former U.S. Senator Pete Domenici and Alice Rivlin, Former OMB Director


BPC Debt Reduction Task Force

Bipartisan Policy Center

December 15, 2010

“Thanks again for participating as a roundtable moderator for the SEC’s 27th Annual Government-Business Forum on Small Business Capital Formation on November 20th. Your contribution helped the event garner high praise from many quarters. Our office looks forward to continuing to work with you in fostering capital formation, investor protection and fair, orderly and efficient markets for small private and public companies.”

Gerald LaPorte, Office of Small Business Policy

U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission

November 25, 2008


“I am very grateful for your participation in this year’s Global Summit of Women. It was an honor and a privilege to lead such an impressive group of women. Your personal commitment to the advancement of women made an important contribution to the Summit and I hope you will consider remaining engaged with the State Department, particularly the Office of the Senior Coordinator for Women’s Issues to pursue this important transformational diplomacy goal.”

Kerrigan joins Business Women Forum (BWF) - Palestine Executive Director Doa M Wadi, and Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Dr. Salam Fayyad for a follow up discussion after their presentations in Ramallah on women's entrepreneurship and economic development. Kerrigan traveled to the region in 2001 to help BWF get started.

Karen Kerrigan joined Business Women Forum (BWF) – Palestine Executive Director Doa M Wadi, and Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Dr. Salam Fayyad for a follow up discussion after her presentation in Ramallah on women’s entrepreneurship and economic development (June 2011). Kerrigan has traveled to the Palestinian territories on numerous occasions, with her first visit in 2001 to help the BWF launch its efforts.

Paula Dobriansky, Under Secretary of State for Democracy and Global Affairs

U.S. Department of State

June 25, 2007


“Thank you for all of your work to reform our country’s immigration system. President Bush and his Administration understand that achieving comprehensive immigration reform is vital to both our economic and national security. Inaction is impacting American businesses, the overall economy, and everyday lives. We also know that many of the businesses represented by your association are feeling firsthand the effects of our broken immigration system. I encourage you to continue in your efforts.”

Carlos M. Gutierrez, U.S. Secretary of Commerce

July 16, 2007


“On behalf of the U.S. Small Business Administration and the National Women’s Business Council, we would like to express our appreciation for your service on the National Women’s Business Council. During your term, we have seen the impact of the hard work of the Council as the unprecedented growth of women-owned businesses during the past decade has continued its historic run. Your leadership and dedication to the growth of women’s entrepreneurship has helped further the Council’s mission of promoting bold initiatives, policies and programs to support women’s business enterprises at all stages of development. We are indeed fortunate to have had your talents on the Council.”

Karen Kerrigan joins SBE Council members Sherwood Neiss and Jason Best at the White House for the signing of the JOBS Act (April 2012). Sherwood and Jason developed the framework for the equity crowdfinancing provision in the JOBS Act.

Karen Kerrigan and SBE Council members Sherwood Neiss and Jason Best joined President Obama at the White House for the signing of the JOBS Act (April 2012). Sherwood and Jason developed the framework and worked tirelessly for the equity crowdfinancing provisions in the JOBS Act.

Tami Longaberger, Chair, National Women’s Business Council

April 6, 2005


“Please accept the heartfelt appreciation of the Office of Advocacy for your invaluable part in our September 19-20, 2005, symposium on Small Business and the Regulatory Environment. This important event highlighted 25 years of the Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA) and examined the current state of the regulatory climate for small business. Your participation helped make the event a great success.”

Thomas A. Sullivan

Chief Counsel for Advocacy

SBA Office of Advocacy

October 11, 2005


“I’d like to thank you personally for hosting the U.S. Small Business Administration’s recent online chat on ‘Health Care and Your Small Business.’ The Web chat was a sound success, and I appreciate your participation as guest host. The number and nature of the questions asked by chat participants, as well as the quality of your answers, are evidence that the chat was well received. I admire and appreciate your commitment to small business, and wish you continued success in your endeavors.”

Hector V. Barreto, Administrator, U.S. Small Business Administration

August 31, 2005

In 2013, Karen Kerrigan visited Nepal where she met with young entrepreneurs throughout the country, spoke at various colleges and business association events, and had the opportunity to talk with women and girls about entrepreneurship and leadership.

“On behalf of Senator Ron Wyden and John Ensign, I would like to thank you for your recent participation at our briefing on the Expensing of Stock Options. Your discussion of the FASB proposal’s impact on small businesses, particularly technology companies, was very helpful in furthering the congressional staff’s understanding of this issue. The feedback from those attending the briefing was very positive.”

Bill Bates, Executive Director, Forum on Technology and Innovation

Council on Competitiveness

April 29, 2004


“Thank you for speaking at our program, Flex-Options: Making Them Work for You. You were a terrific moderator and helped the panel to connect with the audience. Your energy and enthusiasm for the Flex-Options initiative was wonderful and helped make the program a tremendous success. 100% of those responding rated the program as outstanding or very good in giving them resources, information, and training to achieve workplace flexibility. I look forward to working with you again in the future.”

Nancy Chen,Regional Administrator, Women’s Bureau

U.S. Department of Labor

February 19, 2004


Karen Kerrigan testifies before the Senate Government Affairs and Homeland Security Committee on “The Effects of Regulatory Policy on the Economy and Business Growth,” Subcommittee on Regulatory Affairs and Federal Management, September 2018.

Karen Kerrigan (center) celebrates with recording artists, producers and music industry execs on the signing of the “Music Modernization Act,” September 2018.

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