August 2020

Now Open: NoCo Business Survey 3.o

Now Open: NoCo Business Survey 3.o

Northern Colorado economic development focused organizations have been collaborating to understand business challenges since the Stay At Home Order was issued last March. Our previous surveys have helped inform elected officials, design assistance programs at the regional and municipal scale, apply for grant funding to support businesses and workers, and has helped us focus our efforts where we can make a difference to support our businesses.
Please share 10 minutes of your time and your valuable business experiences with us so that we can continue to make a positive impact for businesses during the ongoing COVID-19 response and recovery process.

[Webinar] Coffee with Small Biz Directors + Special Guests from Our Funding Resources Group

Please join a Zoom meeting with Larimer SBDC Director Mike O’Connell and Loveland Business Development Center Director Kat Rico, to talk about business recovery resources and the SBA’s economic recovery programs.
Joining them will be Special Guests Nancy Rumfelt, CPA and Geneve Huxley, CPA from our Funding Resources Group. They will be discussing PPP forgiveness status and preparation, plus fielding other questions about PPP and EIDL.

Mike O’Connell

Larimer SBDC Senior Director

Kat Rico

LBDC Program Director

Nancy Rumfelt

President, Beyond Accounting

Geneve Huxley

Huxley CPA Consulting, LLC

Terri Donovan-Keirns​

Terri Donovan-Keirns



Larimer SBDC Assistant Director


Terri Donovan-Keirns, assistant director, has been with the SBDC since November 2009 and brings a wide variety of experiences with her.  Terri graduated from Colorado State University with a degree in Human Development and Family Studies.  She managed a local day care center for 10 years, at which time the family construction business was growing rapidly.  For the next 12 years Terri managed the family construction business with 5 other partners.  During that time they started 4 additional companies in the areas of land development and rental properties.  Terri also had a brief period working in the insurance industry. She enjoys gardening, traveling and spending time with her family, especially her grandkids

Becky Douthit



Larimer SBDC Administrative Assistant 

Becky Douthit is the Administrative Assistant at the Larimer SBDC.  Becky is a native of Fort Collins, CO and graduated from Poudre High School.  She brings a wide variety of experiences with her.  She has worked for an online correspondence school and most recently was the secretary of one of Loveland, Colorado’s Elementary schools.  Her understanding of small businesses comes naturally as both her parents and husband own their own mechanic businesses.  She understands both the struggles and successes. 

Becky and her husband Jason have 4 children combined.  They love spending time on road trips, camping and spending time with their family.

Deaf Communication Services

Sharon Nutt was working as a sign language interpreter for a larger firm when she decided, “I can provide better service, and make more money”. In 2009, she founded Deaf Communication Services (DCS), focused primarily on arranging sign language medical interpreting for Deaf patients.

When asked to describe her “secret sauce”, Sharon replied, “having prior experience as an interpreter really helped.  Interpreters like dealing with us, because of how we treat them, and because we value their feedback. Our goal is to provide the best quality consumer

A year ago, she hired Christian Fillman and Lindsey Hein from a larger competitor, as CEO and COO respectively. Christian says, “Sharon works at the highest ethical standards, and produces only quality services. She’s a humble special woman.” Lindsey adds, “She’s got a big heart. She always wants to do what’s best.” For additional insight, DCS formed an Advisory Board this year, which includes both hearing and Deaf interpreters and legal members.

Sharon discovered the Larimer SBDC when she was hired to interpret for a SBDC client. She then started using the SBDC herself. “They’ve been so great, in everything we’ve needed. Consultant Samantha Peaslee (attorney) helped us navigate some contract issues. We’ve gotten advice on pricing strategies.  It’s just been liberating.”

The COVID health crisis has caused DCS to change some strategies. They’ve shifted to virtual interpreting, since face-to-face sessions inside hospitals are very limited. Lisa Leveille with First National Bank (and an SBDC consultant), helped DCS secure a Payroll Protection Program (PPP) loan, to pay DCS employees despite temporary revenue declines. DCS also obtained an Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) from the SBA.

Sign language interpreters must obtain a national certification, and receive continuing education. A new initiative for DCS is an exciting inaugural event later this year. “We’re planning a large-scale, on-line, professional quality annual summit, called “Terp Academy,” where our interpreters can earn CE credits”, said Christian. Almost 1000 interpreters
have signed up already!

Sharon and DCS proudly provide inexpensive training and communication for their customers, employees, clients, vendors, and other stakeholders. “We do it in a way that fosters dignity, and earns loyalty, for both parties”, says Sharon.  

Contact Deaf Communication Services at

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