• James Suttles Entrepreneurship Institute

    The James Suttles Entrepreneurship Institute was established in 2008 by a very generous $350,000.00 donation from James Suttles, the founder and owner of one of the most successful private trucking ventures in the United States. The Institute’s mission is to provide the citizens of Alabama’s Black Belt region with the knowledge, skills, and ability to successfully launch new entrepreneurial endeavors, create viable and sustainable small business ventures, retain and expand existing small business, and build capacity through community, economic, and workforce development projects.

    J. William McFarland, Jr. was appointed as the second director of the Institute in July, 2013. Mr. McFarland’s goal is the creation of an innovative and sustainable entrepreneurial infrastructure in the region with an emphasis on sustainable small business start-up projects. To this end, the Institute partners with such organizations as AIDT, the Alabama Entrepreneurial Resource Network, Chambers of Commerce, Small Business Development Centers, and Economic Development Authorities to provide resources to Black Belt entrepreneurs. For example, in late July, 2013, a partnership with the Coleman Center for the Arts was established to start-up and sustain an innovative business incubator initiative in York, Alabama. Thank you for your interest in the Suttles Entrepreneurship Institute; our goal is to improve the quality of life in West Alabama.

    Angelia L. Mance
    Special Project Coordinator