Nancy Burrows

Nancy Burrows is the Secretary of SSSBA.  She has over 40 years’ experience in education, not-for-profits, and as a small business owner. She works at the Business & Career Institute (BCI) of South Suburban College as a workforce development and regional projects specialist. She is on the board of regional economic development organizations and also focuses on small businesses, often working with SCORE to plan and deliver workshops for start-ups and existing small businesses.

Nancy has taught at the university and community college level, analyzed employee training needs, coordinated and directed programs, written successful grants and designed and coordinated projects, workshops and seminars, ranging from specialized medical education lean manufacturing,  basic skills, and many things in between. Nancy works with clients to ensure they receive quality programs that meet their needs. She loves sales and develops strong client relationships.

Nancy has also worked in the not-for-profit sector in administration, resource development and director positions. She has owned small businesses for imprinting paper goods, hand-crafted jewelry and grant writing. She is an active community volunteer, holding positions at committee, board, and executive board levels.

Nancy is married to her high school sweetheart Larry Burrows, photographer and owner of Photography by Larry Burrows.  They have three adult sons (who are all small business owners) and five grandchildren. To Nancy and Larry’s delight, all live in the Greater Chicago Area.

Nancy has a master’s degree in Adult Education from National Louis University and a bachelor’s degree in English Education from Washington University in St. Louis.

For over 16 years, Nancy has been involved in and passionate about SSSBA.  She enjoys getting to know small business owners and those who are thinking of starting a business.  Always on the lookout for trends and hot topics, she chooses topics and coordinates events that help businesses reach their goals.

All in all, Nancy envisions the big picture and the details.  SSSBA has provided a great opportunity to be a cheer leader and drill sergeant.  One of her fellow SSSBA board members told her recently that Nancy’s name is part of the SSSBA brand—that people tell her they are attending something because Nancy suggested it or that Nancy reached out to them with an idea or some contacts she thought would benefit them.  To be thought of as a great resource—how rewarding!

Nancy can be reached by email at or by phone at 708-596-2000 ext 3258.

What attracted you to SSSBA? What do you and your business get out of membership?

I was introduced to SSSBA through my job in business optimization at a community college. Here are
some facts: Small businesses contribute to their local economies by bringing growth and innovation, as
well as stimulating economic growth by providing employment opportunities, innovative new products
and new solutions, which ultimately benefit both small and larger businesses.

That explains why my college sent me to an SSSBA event some 18 years ago; what it doesn’t explain is
my passion for SSSSBA itself and how I took that opportunity and moved forward with it to actively
work in SSSBA.

I have been a board member of SSSBA for a number of years and have chaired events such as The
Summit Awards and Business Before and After Hour workshops, and the Holiday party. I have seen
small businesses touted as being important to the economy but then left with little support or
encouragement. I, myself, have owned small businesses and my husband and three adult sons are all
small business owners. I have shared in the joys, frustrations, issues and changes the small business
owner has faced over the past few decades and have applied those experiences and my professional skills
as an educator to provide services and networking opportunities to small regional businesses.

I get satisfaction from working with SSSBA to build and maximize SSSBA’s connections to other diverse
organizations, such as SCORE, South Suburban College, SAMBA, and other business organizations.
Meanwhile SSSBA involvement helps me pinpoint small business needs to develop trainings my
department at the college offers. SSSBA involvement also supports South Suburban College’s mission to
Serve our Students and the Community through lifelong learning.

SSC is dedicated to:
– High quality education, training, and services for all individuals who have the ability to benefit
from our programs.
– Programs that are accessible and affordable provided to a diverse community of learners.
– Training delivered in collaboration with local businesses…

For me, personally, SSSBA contributes to my own goals and affinities to make the world a better place, to
meet and enjoy camaraderie with a diverse group, and to work hard.