Marie Johns has been confirmed by unanimous consent by the Senate as the deputy administrator of the SBA.
Johns, who was nominated for the post by President Obama, will be the second-ranking official at the agency with major responsibility for management, policy development and program supervision.
Johns is a managing member of L&L Consulting LLC, an organizational effectiveness and public policy consulting practice. She previously served as president of Verizon Washington, retiring in 2004 after 21 years of service in the telecommunications industry.
The former chair of the D.C. Chamber of Commerce and founder of the Washington, D.C. Technology Council, Johns is also the former chair of Leadership Greater Washington and founding chair and current chairperson of the Howard University Middle School of Mathematics and Science. While at Verizon Washington, Johns created the Students Educated for Economic Development Success program, which has prepared more than 200 high school dropouts for entry-level positions in the telecommunications industry, many of whom were hired by small local firms, according to the SBA.
SBA Administrator Karen Mills said Johns' "strong leadership will help provide small businesses with the guidance, support and tools they need to grow, create jobs and continue to drive economic recovery throughout the country."