CDCA Member Takes National Entrepreneur Title
SBA Names Noah Leask First Runner-up 2013 National Small Business Person of the Year, Marking Third National Title in Five Years for a South Carolina Entrepreneur The U.S. Small Business Administration has just announced that Noah Leask, head of Mount Pleasant-based cyber-defense firm ISHPI, is the 2013 National Small Business Person of the Year first runner-up. Leask’s selection was announced during a National Small Business Week awards ceremony in Washington, D.C. honoring the Small Business Person of the Year winners representing the 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands and Guam. Leask’s title marks the third time in five years that a South Carolina entrepreneur has received national SBA recognition. Rebecca Ufkes of Hanahan engineering and manufacturing firm UEC Electronicswas also the first runner-up National Small Business Person of the Year in 2010. In 2008, Deborah Moore of AccuStat EMR in Myrtle Beach tied for second runner-up National Small Business Person of the Year. Second runner-up Small Business Person of the Year is Kari Warberg Block of Earth-Kind, Inc. in Bismark, N.D. The 2013 National Small Business Person of the Year winner is John Stonecipher of Guidance Aviation in Prescott, Ariz. ISHPI provides information operations and cyber-security services to the U.S. intelligence, security and military communities. Leask, a service-disabled U.S. Navy veteran, and his wife Lisa, a fellow Navy veteran, started ISHPI out of their home in September 2006. Today, ISHPI has 109 employees and facilities in Virginia and San Antonio, in addition to its Mount Pleasant headquarters. Notable clients include the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, U.S. Central Command and the Joint IED Defeat Organization. The SBA named Leask the 2013 South Carolina Small Business Person of the Year in April. Previously, SBA honored Leask as the 2009 Veteran Small Business Champion for both South Carolina and the southeast for his mentorship of fellow veterans pursuing entrepreneurship. ISHPI continues to support the veteran community through its Warrior Program. ISHPI’s additional community outreach efforts include programs in support of the disabled, Native American youth and the National Breast Cancer Foundation. Leask was nominated for the Small Business Person of the Year award by Linda Blanton, a consultant with the Small Business Development Center in North Charleston.