(Washington, DC) – U.S. Senators Jim Risch (R-ID) and Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), Chairman and Ranking Member of the Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship, today issued the following statements on the committee’s approval of Rear Admiral Althea H. Coetzee to be Deputy Administrator of the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA).  Coetzee’s nomination passed unanimously.

“The SBA provides critical support to small businesses in New Hampshire and across the country, and we need individuals leading this important agency who are dedicated to its mission,” said Senator Shaheen.  “During her confirmation hearing, Admiral Coetzee pledged to make it easier for small businesses to access federal contracts and services and to better understand regulations.  I was also pleased that she committed to swiftly filling key SBA positions in New Hampshire where 99 percent of our employers are small businesses.  There is bipartisan support for SBA and its programs, and I look forward to working with the Deputy Administrator to improve SBA’s services for small businesses and ensure the agency is a flexible and efficient resource for entrepreneurs operating in a 21st century global economy.”

“With a distinguished military career that includes several deployments on sea and land, there is no doubt that Admiral Coetzee is a dedicated public servant,” said Senator Risch. “In between periods of active duty service she launched a small business of her own, demonstrating that she also has firsthand knowledge of the challenges facing small businesses and entrepreneurs in America.  I have no doubt that she will work hard on behalf of small businesses across the country, and will serve the SBA well in her capacity as Deputy Administrator.  I look forward to her confirmation by the full Senate.”

Coetzee’s nomination will now move to the Senate floor for confirmation.