Karen Kerrigan, President & CEO of Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council

For nearly 30 years Karen Kerrigan’s leadership, advocacy and training work has helped foster U.S. entrepreneurship and global business growth.  She is President & CEO of the Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council, and is the group’s chief advocate for its members.

Kerrigan regularly testifies before the U.S. Congress on the key issues impacting entrepreneurs and the economy, and has been appointed to numerous federal advisory boards including the National Women’s Business Council, the U.S.-Iraq Business Dialog, the U.S. Treasury’s Taxpayer Advisory Panel, and the National Advisory Committee for Labor Provisions of U.S. Free Trade Agreements. Kerrigan regularly engages with the President’s cabinet and key advisors, and has participated in numerous White House economic summits, scores of events hosted by the Small Business Administration, U.S. Treasury Department and other federal government agencies and departments.  Kerrigan serves as Chair of the Small Business Roundtable, a coalition of leading small business and entrepreneurship organizations dedicated to advancing policy, securing access and promoting inclusion to benefit the businesses at the heart of the American economy. She has written hundreds of Op-Eds and newspaper columns, and regularly appears on national television and talk radio programs. Kerrigan makes regular appearances on Fox Business to provide commentary and analysis on the latest economic data, what’s driving the markets, and the outlook for the economy, entrepreneurship and small business growth.

Kerrigan is a Certified Health Coach and serves on the board (and chairs the Health, Wellness and Fitness Committee) of the Vienna Business Association. She is also a board member of the Bayh-Dole Coalition and Right Now.

Accolades for Karen’s work.

Kerrigan has been called America’s “entrepreneurial envoy” and “small business ambassador” for her extensive speaking, knowledge sharing and capacity-building work overseas. She is a founding member of the World Entrepreneurship Forum, and regularly provides counsel to governments and business associations across the globe regarding entrepreneurial development, capacity building and policy formation and implementation. Kerrigan has traveled to Belarus, Kazakhstan, Tunisia, Morocco, Nepal, the Palestinian territories, among many other countries to work with business and government leaders on reforms and programs to encourage entrepreneurship, women’s economic empowerment, investment and business growth. She is a board member, former Chair, and current Audit Committee Chair of the Center for International Private Enterprise (CIPE), one of the core institutes of the National Endowment for Democracy, which works to strengthen democracy around the globe through private enterprise and market-oriented reforms.

“The hardest working woman in show business,” The Hill

BizTech Magazine named Kerrigan to its 2020 Small Business Influencer IT List in in November 2020. In July 2018, Kerrigan was named to Fit Small Business’s “Top Small Business Influencers of 2018.”  She was presented with the “Crowdfundie Award” at the 2017 Global Crowdfunding Convention for her leadership and advocacy on crowdfunding issues. In November of 2017, the Global IP Center of the U.S. Chamber presented Kerrigan with its “Excellence in Advocacy” award for her work on strengthening IP protections, and for her advocacy and outreach regarding the importance of IP to investment, innovation and entrepreneurship.  In 2014, 2013, 2012 and 2011 she was named a Top 100 Champion Small Business Influencer by Small Business Trends.  CEO World Magazine named Kerrigan a “Top Power Woman in Crowdfunding” (November 2013),  and in May 2016 she was presented with the New Capital Markets Leadership Award by the Crowdfund Intermediary Regulatory Advocates (CFIRA) and Crowdfund Capital Advisors for her steadfast leadership and work in making equity and debt-based crowdfunding legal. In November of 2009 Kerrigan was was awarded the “Small Business Advocate of the Year” by the NY Enterprise Report Among other accolades, Inc. Magazine named Kerrigan to its small business “Best Friends in D.C.” (2006) list as apower broker and activistwith “serious clout” for entrepreneurs; Fortune Small Business  to its “Power 30” list (2000); and The Hill newspaper to its “most influential small business” list (2006) describing Kerrigan as “the hardest working woman in show business.”  In 1995, National Journal named Kerrigan to its short list of “K Street” activists most likely to have an impact on Capitol Hill. Campaigns and Elections Magazine named her as one of its “Rising Stars in Politics” in its April 1996 issue.

Kerrigan graduated from SUNY Cortland with a B.A. in Political Science, and serves on the Cortland College Foundation Board of Directors. She resides with her family in Northern Virginia.

Twitter: @KarenKerrigan

Linked In: /karenkerrigan


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