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Mission Acceleration Business Accelerator Celebrates Nine Spring Graduates

Pictured: Eight out of the nine graduates of the Mission Acceleration Business Accelerator program pose together during their final session on June 1. From left are: Gary Heisey, Mission Acceleration Executive Director; Terry Young; Kelly Noble; Brenda Valenti; Betty Baker; Bill Atkission; Jesus Romero; Tanya Fletcher; and Josh Goldbach. Hiram Wells is not pictured. (Photo courtesy of Colby Denton, Blue Ridge Community College Marketing and Communications Dept.)

The Mission Acceleration Business Accelerator at Blue Ridge Community College honored nine graduates on June 1 at the Henderson County Chamber of Commerce.

Mission Acceleration is a five-month, ten-session program for small business owners to innovate and take their businesses to the next level. It is designed by entrepreneurs to help for-profit, family owned, and non-profit businesses innovate and increase profitability. The program also helps participants learn to identify, track, and monitor key performance indicators to accelerate the success of their businesses.

“This custom program assists participating entrepreneurs in identifying new ways to innovate their businesses for growth and sustainability using industry best practices,” said Mission Acceleration Executive Director Gary Heisey. “It also confirms to them what is working well in their businesses.”

Training topics are taught by subject matter experts and include management, leadership, insurance, purchasing, branding, sales, customer service, distribution and finance. The program directors also created a self-test that asks a variety of questions intended to help business owners decide if the program is right for them.

The list of graduates included Bill Atkission, Betty Baker, Tanya Fletcher, Josh Goldbach, Kelly Noble, Jesus Romero, Brenda Valenti, Hiram Wells, and Terry Young.

The graduates participated in weekly half-day courses from January to May.

Mission Acceleration is a result of the partnership between Blue Ridge Community College and the Henderson County Chamber of Commerce. Various organizations serve as partners, including the Blue Ridge Community College Small Business Center.

Learn how to get involved in the next Mission Acceleration Business Accelerator program, and take the self-test at