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SBA announces retirement of Franklin Sciortino


Fri, Sep 1st 2023 10:55 am

Longtime district director celebrates 58 years of service

Submitted by the U.S. Small Business Administration

As we celebrate the spirit of entrepreneurship and affirm our support for America’s small businesses in celebration of the U.S. Small Business Administration’s 70th anniversary this year, we also honor Buffalo District Director Franklin J. Sciortino as he plans to retire from the SBA on Sept. 1. His admirable service of dedication and commitment to the federal government. Franklin’s positive leadership, inspiration, and unprecedented devotion to the small business community have made a meaningful impact over the past 58 years.

Since joining the SBA in 1965, Franklin has served under 11 different U.S. presidents and 20 SBA administrators. Franklin began his career in the private financial sector and, upon joining the SBA, he held a variety of financial management positions. In 1975, Franklin, a native of Buffalo, was named Buffalo’s branch manager, and in 1990 was named district director of the Buffalo office where he has been serving ever since. Franklin has devoted his entire SBA career to serving New York small businesses, partners, lending institutions, and constituents in 14 counties, including the eight counties of Western New York.

“I honestly believe helping small business and driving equity is in his DNA,” Buffalo Deputy District Director Victoria Reynolds said. “As we celebrate SBA’s 70th anniversary, it is important to recognize our very own ‘living legacy,’ and Franklin’s many achievements over the years.”

Known by many as “Mr. Small Business,” not only has he been recognized by SBA for his years of service, but he has been recognized for his work by area chambers of commerce, resource partners, and industrial development agencies. Franklin’s ability to reach out to the community and his ability to convene partnerships and collaborators to create opportunities for small business owners made him stand out and succeed.

Franklin created the Buffalo district’s flagship program, “Straight Talk,” over 25 years ago, offering a full day of entrepreneurial inspiration, networking and training under one roof for the City of Buffalo’s underserved community. Since its inception, thousands of people have participated in the program with many businesses launching as a result.

Sciortino worked to usher in SBA assistance to thousands of people affected by Hurricane Agnes in 1972, the Buffalo blizzards of 1977 and 2022, and COVID-19, just to name a few. Additionally, Franklin participated in the Western New York federal executive board for 10 years, served as its chairman for three, and was recognized as the youngest chairman to serve an FEB in 1979 by then-President Carter. He also received the Distinguished Alumni Award from Canisius College in 2007.

Franklin’s impeccable character and reputation have set an example for others and will leave a lasting impression on the agency and his colleagues. Over the years, Franklin’s positive attitude was attributed to his favorite motto, “If you love your job, you never work a day in your life.”

There’s more to the story: Franklin, born in 1933, recently celebrated his 90th birthday. Sciortino intends to stay active in his community, spend time with family and friends, and continue to support small businesses in Buffalo in any way he can.

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