Norman Business Journal Q2//19 - Page 6

FIRST THINGS FIRST Norman’s business liason looks to use new avenue to better connect W ow, this is exciting! An opportunity for me to connect en masse with the Norman business community every quarter—thanks Norman Business Journal! First, in case we haven’t met, let’s start with an introduction. My name is Sara Kaplan and I have been a Normanite almost continuously since 1989 when my family moved here to open a business. I often joke that I am the youngest person with nearly three decades of experience in Norman’s business community. My current job is serving as the Retail Marketing Coordinator at the City of Norman, a position created in 2014. The role of the Retail Marketing Coordinator is to assist 6 by Sarah KAPLAN, Retail Marketing Coordinator at the City of Norman in the recruitment, retention and development of retail, restaurant and entertainment venues to effectively grow the sales tax base and improve quality of life in Norman. Often, I am one of the first points of contact at the City for existing and prospective businesses, commercial property owners, real estate brokers, and others looking to learn more about the market in Norman. If I haven’t met you yet, please reach out, I would love to talk business with you! One of my favorite parts of this job is getting to work with so many of our small business owners in Norman. The business community in Norman is diverse and passionate about the Norman community. It’s inspiring | Quarter 2 // 2019 to daily witness how much they give back to their community and support one another. If your company is not involved with one of our local business associations, please feel free to contact me, and I can help you get plugged in. Each year during National Small Business Week (May 5 to 11, 2019), I partner with the Laura Callaham, Business Outreach Specialist at the Pioneer Library System, to hold a free workshop on how to start a small business in Norman. This workshop is a great “nuts and bolts” overview of the business start-up process, and covers the basics such as business registration, permitting, and other riveting topics. Our region is fortunate to have an excellent network of