Respond Right named as a Finalist in the National Business Incubation Assoc Awards for Outstanding Incubator Graduate
As full-time paramedics, Toni Milan and Donna Weiss recognized how many lives could be saved if more people knew how to respond in emergency situations. So the two women formed Respond Right to help. The firm offers a range of corporate, public and professional safety training, including Emergency Medical Technician – Basic (EMT-B) and Paramedic (EMT-P), CPR, first aid, automatic external defibrillator and fire extinguisher training.
When the company entered the Economic Development Center of St. Charles County in 2008, Respond Right employed five and occupied a 710-square-foot office – using the incubator’s conference room for training. With the help and guidance of the EDC staff, Respond Right grew quickly, growing its revenue by 159 percent and expanding its staff to 30.
Incubator’s role: Milan and Weiss say the business training they received from EDC contributed greatly to their ability to grow a successful and sustainable business. From monthly seminars on leadership development and marketing to the incubator’s 16-week Graduate School of Entrepreneurship, which provided more in-depth training on business topics such as legal compliance, branding and organizational structure, the incubator experience allowed the pair to learn more about running a business and to network and grow business relationships. The incubator even was able to provide Respond Right with a $50,000 loan from its revolving loan fund at a vital time, allowing the company to purchase additional equipment. “This loan has allowed the company to remain at the forefront of an extremely dynamic industry,” Milan says. “Without that loan, Respond Right would never have been able purchase our much-needed equipment for additional course offerings.”