The Business Pillar mission is to open and/or make available pathways to collaboration and assistance to any veteran or military family member in the pursuit of entrepreneurism and growth of their business venture in Metro Atlanta.
Michael Hare, SharpUSA & Director of the Business Pillar
MICHAEL HARE is President of Sharp Business Systems – Georgia and Alabama, a division of Sharp Electronics Corporation. As the leader of SBS for Georgia and Alabama, growing revenue and profitability, improving customer retention, and expanding our customer base are key responsibilities.
The SBS Georgia and Alabama operation meets the needs of over 10,000 customers and is the combination of the resources of a multi-billion dollar corporation and the value of local representation with local management and community relationships.
Prior to Sharp, Michael was Vice President, a senior executive and business group leader, for RICOH Corporation for 10 years.
Michael enlisted and served in the United States Navy as an Operations Specialist 2nd class petty officer. He specialized as a combat information center air controller. Michael served 2 deployments in the Persian Gulf, multiple cruises throughout North Atlantic Mediterranean and Caribbean areas on the USS Robert G Bradley (FFG-49). His unit was deployed and stationed off the coast of Kuwait in the North Persian Gulf during Desert Shield/Storm and was awarded the Armed Forces Expeditionary, Southwest Asia and National Defense Service Medals.
Following his active service, Michael used his GI Bill and attended the Citadel in Charleston, SC as a Veteran Day Student for Business Administration.
After the Citadel, Michael worked for Xerox for 2 years and then left to start his own business. After writing a business plan and working with a SCORE representative, Michael ventured on his own and established a Veteran Business as he started and grew a successful office products and communications technology business in Upstate South Carolina. After 10 years he sold the business to C&E of Nashville, TN and CCD, a Sharp company of Charlotte, NC.
Michael is a proud Lifetime VFW Member and American Legion PUFL member. He has been married to Shannon for 22 years and has three children (Carlisle, Caroline and Hayden). Michael also is proud of his 22 year old brother-in-law that is serving in the US Army and is stationed in Ft. Bragg, NC.
Michael serves as the Director of the Business Pillar for VETLANTA where he works to build relationships with businesses and organizations in the community to make Atlanta the premier city for America’s veterans.
The VECOE program has three core initiatives:
- Mentorship: We connect veteran entrepreneurs with senior businesses leaders through a structure mentoring program to help build a strong a successful business
- VOB Summit Series: Facilitating innovation and networking through the ongoing summits with thought leaders from around the country for Veteran Owned Businesses (VOB)
- Incubator: Establish and facilitate an incubator program to provide an environment for start-ups to take off and succeed
Mentorship Program Description:
Provide an accessible point of entry to get connected with resources and networks who can quickly help define the fundamental builds blocks to create a successful business that is specifically tailored toward veterans and is free.
Mentor program Roles/profile:
- Veteran Entrepreneur: Any prior service military member who is seeking to start and/or grow their own business
- Mentor: An individual with a proven business background who can present the fundamental aspects of a strong business model. Will typically have a professional network they can access to help with research and consultation to provide industry/market specific guidance to the veteran’s business plan
- VECOE Project Team: Identify key challenges facing the small business startups and the veteran community and co-develop the program to meet those needs including the mentor/protégé program
- Resources: a network of key resources offering expertise in various aspects of what a veteran business owner will need that are brought into the mentorship engagement as needed
- Three month’s long with two brief sessions per month. This is a baseline but will vary depending on the needs and dynamic of the engagement
- Initial engagement would typically be 1-2 hrs. in person
- Participate in an Incubator Program and other future external opportunities that may be derived from this program
VOB Summit Series Description:
- Facilitating innovation and networking through the ongoing summits with thought leaders from around the country for Veteran Owned Businesses (VOB).
- Target Attendees are veterans who own a small to medium sized business and are looking to gain insight on business trends that will impact their business and for those who want to gain peer-to-peer networking opportunities.
Incubator Program Description:
- Establish and facilitate an incubator program to provide an environment for start-ups to take off and succeed.
- Target participants are veterans who own a small to medium sized business, who meet our criteria, and are looking to have a hosted office environment to launch their business.