SBDC at Pinellas County

The Florida Small Business Development Center (SBDC), assists existing and emerging businesses in Pinellas county, through no-cost confidential business consulting, information, and low-cost training. Whether starting, buying, growing or selling a business, the Florida SBDC at USF has what entrepreneurs need to grow and succeed. Consultants can assist entrepreneurs in a variety of business areas, including: marketing, business certification, capital access, market diversification, developing strategic business plans, export services, and web optimization.

building[1]SBDC at Pinellas Economic Development Center
13805 58th Street, North
Clearwater, FL 33760
Phone: (727) 453-7200
To Make an Appointment call (727) 453-7200

SBDC PCED at USF St. Petersburg
140 7th Ave., South, Davis 108
St. Petersburg, FL 33701
Phone: (727) 453-7200

 

 

TrainingConsultantsLocation WebsiteSchedule a Consultant
Growth Acceleration – Apply Now

Map & Directions


Meet the Consultants

  • Dr. Cynthia Johnson

    Dr. Cynthia JohnsonDr. Cynthia JohnsonDirector, SBDC at Pinellas County Economic Development

    Specialty: Business Planning, Disaster Mitigation, Operations Management, Government Procurement, SBIR/STTR Grants

    Dr. Cynthia Johnson is the senior manager for the business assistance division. Johnson is the project manager and certified facilitator for SBDC at PCED’s FastTrac® program, an award-winning training program for entrepreneurs. Before making the transition to Pinellas County Economic Development, Johnson was an assistant principal with Pinellas County School District. During her 10 years as an educator, she led business and educator partner relations. Additionally, she is an adjust professor at the University of South Florida and serves on the Florida High Tech Corridor Council’s SBIR/STTR Matching Grant Advisory Board. In 2010, she was nominated for the business woman of the year award by the Tampa Bay Business Journal and the St. Petersburg Chamber of Commerce for her work with entrepreneurs and small business owners.

  • Kurt Forster

    Kurt ForsterKurt ForsterSBDC at Pinellas County Economic Development

    Specialty: Marketing

    Kurt Forster found his interest in business consulting and training working at the USF Center for Organizational Communication while completing his master’s in communication. Later, he put that experience to use, owning and operating two market research businesses. The entrepreneurial spirit stuck with Forster even while working in large organizations, opening new offices for St. Petersburg College and later the State of Wyoming’s Business Council. Additionally, he led marketing efforts to redevelop downtown St. Petersburg as the Director of Marketing for Bay Plaza Companies. He developed his enthusiastic facilitator style working in a variety of teaching positions from alpine ski instructor and Sea World animal trainer to college instructor. Forster is also a certified instructor for NxLevel Business Training Programs and Kauffman Foundation FastTrac TechVenture Program. Forster also founded Common Ground, a downtown development organization in St. Petersburg, and assists a variety of technology and entrepreneurship organizations throughout Tampa Bay.

  • Wayne Brass

    Wayne BrassWayne BrassSBDC at Pinellas County Economic Development

    Specialty: Certified Technology Business Counselor, Certified Marketing and Sales Executive

    Wayne Brass has had significant success assisting entrepreneurs with Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR)/Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) grants, patents, trademarks and copyrights. He previously owned two small businesses providing consulting services to several large corporations. Brass is a past president of Sales and Marketing Executives of Tampa Bay and several other business associations. He was an executive director of the Tampa Bay Technology Incubator at the University of South Florida, prior to joining the SBDC. In addition, he was an executive director for the Office of Corporate Development at USF. Before joining USF, Brass spent more than 25 years involved in sales, marketing and new business ventures for major corporations.

  • Yolanda Cowart

    Yolanda CowartYolanda CowartSBDC at Pinellas County Economic Development

    Specialty: Workforce Development, Human Resources, Organizational Training

    Yolanda Cowart has more than 20 years of experience in public service at the local and municipal levels. Early in her career, she worked as a human resources and relations professional while serving as a liaison to the business community and advocacy groups. Her prior experience includes being a human relations specialist for Lee County Government, and an equal opportunity director for the City of Fort Lauderdale. Her work experience combines human resources with hands-on leadership in workforce development, equal employment opportunity, organizational training, and supplier diversity principles. Cowart earned a bachelor’s in political science and history from Florida State University.