Behind the scenes at the Alaska SBDC are truly hard-working, talented, and dedicated people working to strengthen Alaska small business sector. We’re thrilled to introduce you to Martha!
In addition to Martha Brookbank’s part-time work with the Alaska SBDC, she is a full-time Real Estate Salesperson and has been in the industry for a year and a half. Before that, she was in the beauty industry for 8 years as a hairstylist and owned a salon for 5 years. She currently lives in Wasilla and has lived in the Valley since she was 2 years old, so has been in Alaska for 29 years.
In her free time, she likes to do active things outdoors, like hiking and biking in the summer and cross-country skiing in the winter. She also likes to cook, bake, and eat! She also says that she loves to travel and experience new places and cultures, and that’s probably what she is missing most now during the COVID era. She also apparently enjoys treasure hunts; you might not know by looking, but she loves to thrift, especially for cookbooks and vintage mugs!
Martha is excited to work for the Alaska SBDC because she has either been employed by small businesses or has been a small business owner her whole working life, so she really grasps the importance of these businesses in our economy and in our communities. It makes her happy to know that she is doing her part to support the brave men and women who strike out on their own in order to create jobs for themselves, their families, and their communities.
She reminiscences that her favorite job–or at least the job that she has the fondest and most fun memories of — was working at the Vagabond Blues coffee booth at the Alaska State Fair. She did this for a few years in her early 20s and says it was always “such a blast. The fast pace made a 15 hour day fly by, we got free entrance and parking and were able to wander around like true carnies on our breaks. I love the state fair and would jump at another chance to man a booth again.”
Martha says the small business community in the state is important to her because her uncle owned a small business, which is what brought her family to Alaska. “My dad had his own business, and I’ve had my own business(es). I guess you could say entrepreneurship runs in my blood and will always be a part of my life. It’s really hard for me to picture working for ‘the man,’ there’s just nothing like being your own boss and having that control over such a big part of your life. Although it comes with big risks, I think the reward outweighs them all!”