SacramentoCalifornia Centers for International Trade Development were awarded State Trade Expansion Program (STEP) funds for 2016-2017, in the amount of $844,214.

“This was an incredible team effort across multiple organizations and colleges. Thank you to the Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development and CA Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office, Los Rios CCD-CITD, San Mateo CCD-CITD, [hosted by Skyline College], State Center CCD-CITD, Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce, CalAsian Chamber of Commerce, Rancho Santiago CCD- CITD and Riverside CCD -CITD for helping to develop and submit a successful proposal” stated Jeff Williamson, Director, California State Trade Expansion Program (STEP).

As a 2015-16 CA STEP Partner, Skyline College CITD Director Yvonne Reid led a trade mission to Hannover Messe 2016, in Hannover, Germany and the United States was the official Partner country. The CITD Director awarded $2500 to eight California small to medium-sized exporting companies. Each company displayed their product and/or service as an Exhibitor at the world’s largest industrial trade fair that welcomed over 190,000 attendees from over 75 countries.

One of the 2015-16 CITD CA STEP award recipients, Kerry Kraft of iA-Robotics, reported that, “We attended match-making sessions with China, Russia, India, South Korea, and Mexico before, during and after, Hannover Messe 2016. As a result of receiving the award from CITD to attend Hannover Messe, we have begun to form strategic partnerships and have a signed agreement with an Indian company; expected sales of $200,000. We are currently partnering with PWin, in Thailand, providing Robotic systems and solutions.”

With this 2016-17 CA STEP award of $42,000, Yvonne will lead another group of California delegates on an Energy Efficiency/Renewable Energy foreign trade mission.

This is a grand opportunity that helps to highlight the direct impact that Skyline College CITD is having on the local and global economy; helping small to medium-sized businesses boost trade and exports abroad. Earlier this week, Emma Briones, CITD Program Services Coordinator (Sub.) and Yvonne Reid, CITD Director attended the CA STEP launch meeting held at the California Community College Chancellor’s Office (CCCCO)  in Sacramento, joining the CA STEP Partners who will lead trade missions this fiscal year.

“The success of last year’s program demonstrates the effectiveness of the STEP grants in helping more small business become international exporters,” said GO-Biz director Panorea Avdis. “We look forward to further expanding this program to bring even more California business into the global economy.”

The grant is part of the US Small Business Administration (SBA) State Trade Expansion Program (STEP) which awarded grants to 44 states and territories to support activities to increase exports by US small businesses. Administrator Maria Contreras-Sweet, the head of the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) and member of President Obama’s Cabinet, announced the grant award this week in Washington D.C.

For more information on the California STEP program, visit

Yvonne Reid, CITD Director, E:, T: 650-738-7098

Article by Yvonne Reid | Photo by Emma Briones