Local Man `Star Performer`

Local Man `Star Performer` Gary Rago, director of the Small Business Development Center at the Rutgers University School of Business at Camden, was named New Jersey's 2004 "Star Performer" at the Small Business Development Center National Conference in New Orleans.

Rago, a resident of Moorestown, won the award for his work at the Rutgers-Camden center, which provides free business counseling and low-cost entrepreneurial training for New Jersey citizens. Most recently, the SBDC initiated a statewide Entrepreneurial Certificate Program, with the New Jersey Council of County Colleges and Gloucester County College. Rago co-chaired the committee creating the program.

The National Conference of Small Business Development Centers named Rago its "Star Performer" for his work in 2003, when the Rutgers-Camden SBDC generated more than $5 million in financing, held more than 120 training events (exceeding its goal by 300 percent), and counseled more than twice its goal of 600 clients.

Rago joined the Rutgers-Camden SBDC as assistant director in 1994. He became director in 2002.

Though Rago initially pursued a career in music, he later earned an MBA from Rutgers-Camden and sat for the CPA exam. He started his business career as treasurer for a Philadelphia Savings and Loan Associate, and worked in a family-run retail business.

Rago is a native of Willingboro, where he graduated from Kennedy High School in 1972.

The New Jersey Small Business Development Center at the Rutgers University School of Business at Camden provides free and low-cost counseling to new and potential owners of small businesses in Burlington, Camden, Gloucester, and Salem counties. For more information, call (856) 225-6221 or visit www.rsbdc.org.

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Author: Press Release

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