Oscar Wong's relationship with the Small Business Association began because “the best way to make a fortune is to start with one. I didn’t have one so I borrowed it.”
On March 20th, Oscar Wong walked on stage at the Grove Park Inn to accept the award for the Small Business Administration’s NC Person of the Year. “I see it as a public opportunity to acknowledge the accomplishments of a superb team and support of a vibrant community,” said Wong before the presentation.
The SBA supports small businesses with low interest loans, training and more. With the Person of the Year award, business owners are recognized for viability, leadership, community involvement and economic benefit. Asheville’s first brewery now employs 34 people and is looking toward it's 20th anniversary in two years. Wong is currently the Asheville Rotary Club President and holds positions in other community organizations. To start Highland, Wong got an SBA loan, backed by BB&T. Bob Kendrick, also a Rotary Club member, was instrumental in securing the SBA loan in 1994 and nominated Wong for this award.
He plans to attend the National Small Business Week celebration and conference set for May 20-22 in Washington, DC, where he and all winners will be recognized.
“It’s a combination of being in the right place at the right time,” Wong says of Highland's success.
The right time, the right place, and the right beverage.