While surrounded by members and leaders of the small business community, Hardin County Judge-Executive Harry Berry on Monday proclaimed this week, May 2-8, as Small Business Week.

The proclamation said small business owners and entrepreneurs make critical contributions daily to the growth of the community; and are of vital importance to the local economy as well as the economy of the state and the nation.

“More than half of our citizens either own or work for a small business; and small businesses create an estimated two out of every three new jobs each year,” the proclamation reads.

“Small businesses possess the ability to respond and adapt quickly to changing economic climates by attracting talented employees who invent new products or implement new solutions.”

Small businesses particularly have faced challenging hurdles the last 14 months during the pandemic with many changing how they’ve had to operate, and others closing for good.

T.W. Shortt, president of the Radcliff Small Business Alliance, said the tradition of recognizing Small Business Week is 50 years old.

“But I’d say this year and this week is a whole different time,” he said. “In our case at the small business alliance, we’ve seen people working together. ... Businesses helping businesses, people coming up with creative solutions to their problems and to their business challenges.”

Shortt said they’ve “learned a lot of valuable lessons that they can implement now to be better small business owners.”

Additionally, Hardin County Chamber of Commerce Vice President of Operations Kendra Scott said, “small businesses are the backbone of our economy, not just in this community, but across the nation.”

“If it weren’t for those small businesses, our economy would collapse, so it is really important to recognize them, not just this week, but every day and every week,” she said.

According to Scott, the Chamber will spotlight various small businesses this week on social media. She encouraged those interested to check it out.

Mary Alford can be reached at 270-505-1417 or malford@thenewsenterprise.com.