Washburn KSBDC Hosts POA Business Fellow

Fernando Torres Rubiani joined the Washburn University
Kansas Small Business Development Center (KSBDC)
staff as an American Business Fellow in mid-July, and
staying through September. Fernando, an
attorney from Paraguay who has worked in small
to multinational companies, is working with
Washburn KSBDC clients and staff to gain new
insights to develop and manage businesses.
The Business Fellows Program is promoted by
Partners of the Americas with funds from the
Department of State. The program fosters greater
understanding of issues related to international
business and economic growth and aims to forge
and strengthen long-term institutional linkages
between the private sectors of the U.S. and
Latin America through the exchange of technical
resources and expertise.
In Paraguay, Fernando works for a real estate agency
that handles commercial and residential property sale
and management. In his current role, he is responsible
for developing new business areas aimed at generating
employment and funding resources. He is also in the process of
restructuring his company to make it compatible in
new business areas, as well as bringing innovation
into the company’s philosophy and culture.
“My objective for this fellowship is to acquire a
clear vision of effective business practices, and
most importantly, proven techniques to generate
income, recruit and train staff, and develop
expansion opportunities,” says Fernando. The
young entrepreneur says he was interested in
a fellowship at a business development center
because of the opportunities to learn business plan
development, product strategy, market analysis
and sales techniques.
Fernando says he is impressed with the diversity of businesses
assisted by the Washburn KSBDC and the staff’s genuine
interest in empowering the business owners.

Looking Back on the History of POA and KPP

To view a 13-minute interview with Jim Boren, one of the founders of Partners of the Americas, please follow this link:


A brief biography of Jim Boren:
In 1957, Jim Boren was the state campaign manager in Texas for Ralph Yarborough’s successful race for the U. S. Senate. He served as the Senator’s Chief of Staff until 1961, when he was named the Deputy Director of the United States Economic Mission to Peru. While in the Foreign Service, Jim helped found and directed the Partners of the Americas, a private sector program aimed at grass roots development in education, health, and community initiatives. The program continues today and is the hemisphere’s largest volunteer program.



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