Serving the Birmingham business community for 25 years
Birmingham Business Resource Center was born out of desire to help historically disadvantaged people and businesses. Throughout his early career at A. G. Gaston’s Citizens Federal Savings Bank and beyond, BBRC Executive Director Bob Dickerson focused on how to serve his community. He recognized the need to help young, black banking professionals like himself achieve full and equitable participation in all levels of the financial services industry. In 1987, he helped form the Birmingham Association of Urban Bankers (BAUB), affiliated with the National Association of Urban Bankers.
During his 3-year tenure as President at BAUB, Bob was able to develop many relationships with influential people, including Richard Arrington, Jr., long-time Birmingham mayor. These relationships, as well as ones developed later, would prove to be important in the founding of BBRC. Bob was selected to serve on Mayor Arrington’s Birmingham Plan task force, which led to other community leadership opportunities. The mayor’s Birmingham Plan created two entities focused on black-owned business development by offering loans.
Bob believed that merely offering loans was not enough to help under-utilized businesses and their owners succeed. He got to work on creating an organization that would help businesses with capacity building, capital, and customers. Birmingham Business Resource Center opened its doors in 1996. Since that time, it has helped originate over $1 Billion dollars in loans and provided numerous business owners with the tools they need to grow their revenue.
Bridging the gap between capital access and success
Capital alone will not help companies thrive. Since its inception, BBRC has developed programs to empower business owners by providing them with technical assistance, counseling and coaching. Our team members have substantial knowledge in SBA loans, finance and banking practices which has given our clients insight into how to keep their businesses healthy. In addition to training, BBRC hosts webinars and forums to connect business owners with financial industry experts and government agencies who provide information on resources and opportunities available to businesses.
Advocating For Black-Owned And Other Historically Underutilized Businesses
We have a genuine passion for helping small, disadvantaged, minority, black, female and historically underutilized businesses build relationships with private enterprises and government agencies. Building and nurturing our relationships with banks and other financial institutions has allowed us to participate in financing projects that contribute to local economic development. This has led to us being able to refer our clients to these institutions as well as receiving referrals from them.
We have maintained a great relationship with the City of Birmingham which has remained constant since we began. This consistency has allowed us to have a closer relationship under five mayoral administrations and several city councils. In addition, we have partnerships with major utility companies, community development financial institutions, various municipalities, and other small business development agencies.
Through our training and advocacy programs, we have helped our clients develop healthy banking relationships. We have also helped businesses build their capacity, get access to the capital they need, and to expand their customer base. We are both proud and humbled that our advocacy work has been recognized by our partner the Small Business Administration and by the U. S. Department of Commerce Minority Business Development Agency.
Sign our 25th Anniversary Virtual Guestbook
Thank you to our clients, partners and employees who have helped us reach this important milestone. We are grateful for your support and we look forward to exploring new opportunities with you in the years to come.