SBDC Staff and Consultants
Certified professionals staff the SBDC at Binghamton. Their knowledge and experience
provide expert counseling and training to address the myriad problems inherent in
the start-up and operation of a business. The SBDC staff has access to the faculty,
staff, students and other resources of Binghamton University as well as private and
public consultants, agencies and the Small Business Development Center Research Network
Regional Director Rochelle Layman has been assisting New York state small businesses since 2008. She began her career as a computer application developer and corporate trainer working with large corporations including Aetna Mutual Funds and Farm Credit Banks. In addition to her 10 years of corporate experience, Layman was the owner and operator of two successful restaurants in Southwestern New York for 13 years. Her financial corporate experience, small-business success and small-business advisement skills aid her in assisting small business owners in dealing with their financial and operational problems.
Business Advisor Michelle Catan started in mid May 2011, bringing 17 years of banking and three years of business ownership to the position. Catan brings her expertise in small business commercial lending, business planning, SBA lending and documentation, financial analysis and as a presenter and trainer to the position. She attended the statewide NYS SBDC training programs with the rest of the Binghamton staff in late May and was introduced to the mission, goals and many of the staff of the overall program. The SBDC office in Oneonta "officially" opened near the middle of June. Catan provides small business assistance to clients in Otsego, Delaware and Chenango counties from there.
Adviser Jie Yin joined the SBDC in 2014. She earned her Master's Degree in Business Administration (MBA) with a concentration in Finance from the Duquesne University in 2010, where she worked with PPG Industries and Westinghouse Electric in corporate sustainability and innovation strategies. Prior to that, she had spent over six years in the government and the Bank of Montreal. In 2013, she started the M.S. in Accounting program at the Binghamton University. Ms. Yin brings her extensive experience in business administration, finance, accounting, and public policy analysis to the center. Her international work and educational experiences enable her to provide business consultation specializing in exporting and immigrant entrepreneurships.
Kenneth Homer has been a business advisor at the center for more than 15 years. Working with over 150 clients each year, he assists both start-up and existing businesses with business plan development, production planning, human resources, financial analysis and cash-flow management. With a master's degree in accounting from Binghamton University, Homer is likely to work with those more complex and extensive cases identified at the Center. He is also a graduate of the Broome Leadership Institute, Class of 2000.
Advisor Jocelyn Thornton joined the SBDC in 2013. Thornton brings over 15 years experience assisting small businesses in areas of government lending, business development and expansion, procurement, and training. Thornton's experience in owning and operating a small business provides insight into the challenges faced by small businesses, including cash flow management, contract performance, time management and staying current with technology. Thornton has an extensive background in state, county and local economic development programs and initiatives. She brings with her knowledge of public relations and small business marketing. Thornton holds a Bachelor of Arts from Binghamton University.
Carrie McKeiver is the director's staff assistant for operations and the center's office manager. She is usually the first friendly voice you hear when calling the SBDC for business assistance. Carrie coordinates the activities of the center, maintains client records and facilitates SBDC program planning including registration, marketing and location coordination. In addition, Carrie is responsible for maintaining all SBDC, SBA, Research Foundation and Binghamton University compliance procedures. With a Bachelor's Degree in Business Management and Operations Management from American Intercontinental University, she brings 10 years of Non-Profit and operations experience to the center.