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Small Business Owners-Navigating Permitting, Commercial Landlords/Leases Amidst Harvey Disaster Recovery-THIS EVENT HAS BEEN POSTPONED

September 19, 2017 @ 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm

This Event is Being Postponed to a Later Date

The new date will be posted on this website and announced via electronic promotion by HCC and our collaborative partners! Read on for Article and another Event Opportunity This Week. 

Read Helen Callier’s permitting article published September 18, 2017.  Click below on article title:

 How to Obtain City Building Permits to Rebuild After Hurricane Harvey

We also invite you to join us on Thursday September 21, from 9am-1pm at HCC West Loop for

 Small Business Symposium-A Candid Discussion on Dealing With the Aftermath of Harvey 9/21/17, 9 am-1 pm, – Click Here for Event Details and to Register



open-with-textSmall Business Owners-Navigating Permitting, Commercial Landlords/Leases Amidst Harvey Disaster Recovery

Small business owners planning openings, expansions and/or relocations now must reset their plans to respond to the impact that recovery from Hurricane Harvey is having on the greater Houston area.

Houston Community College presents a collaborative event to assist our small business community.  Come join HCC, the Houston District Office of the Small Business Administration, SBA Office of Disaster Assistance and local experts on permitting and commercial leasing, to get some insights on how to move plans for your business forward.  

Speakers and Topics:  

  • Helen Callier – Owner, PermitUsNow – Navigating permitting in planned openings and expansions, and/or repairs in light of Harvey.
  • Connie Rankin – Owner, CRES & Associates, Commercial Real Estate Services – Navigating dealings with your landlord, considering your lease and insurance situation and status relating to opening, expanding and/or relocating considering Harvey issues.  Connie has also invited attorney John Barnes to this portion of the event to give added input and participate in Q&A.
  • Michael D. Flores, Public Information Officer, U.S. Small Business Administration, Office of Disaster Assistance – Considering Harvey’s Impact on you and your business.

Helen Callier Thumbnail jpeg Connie Rankin Thumbnail png Harvey_Social_Banner_Webpage
Helen Callier
Connie Rankin
CRES Real Estate
Michael D. Flores
Public Information Officer, SBA Office of Disaster Recovery

More About Our Speakers:

Helen Callier LargeHelen Callier is the owner of Permit Us Now, LLC, the one stop building permit expediting and consulting firm that helps Architects, Contractors, and Project Owners to save time and money plus start construction in a timely manner.   We realized a problem where Architects and Contractors are losing time and prefer to focus on their core services and use their internal design and construction staff more efficiently.  And compounded with Owners wanting to open their establishment on time, Permit Us Now provides a convenient and fast solution.   From ground up, renovations and major repairs on commercial, industrial, government, churches and multi-family projects, we take the frustrations away for our clients.  After one-year of being opened, we expedite building permits across the state of Texas for grocery stores, retail, and restaurants.  Ms. Caller, is also President and Owner of Bradlink, LLC, an award winning technical services firm that provides building design, project management, construction oversight and facilities support services primarily to government agencies. Helen’s core value are life-long learning and to remain open to new ideas to grow in business.  This mindset and behavior have been key to Bradlink’s success over the past 13 years and continue to play a key role in her company growth.   She was also selected to participate in several small business training programs at Houston Community College, including the HCC Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses program, the HCC Newspring Business Plan Competition, and she encourages others to take advantage of the opportunities and continued learning available through HCC.  In the 2016 HCC Newspring Business Plan Competition, Helen created her plan to launch PermitUsNow.com.  As of Fall 2017, PermitUsNow is ramping up to four employees. Major growth has come from permitting activity in over 100 HEB projects throughout Texas and through work on retail and restaurant tenant projects at HAS and other big box stores.  Helen also serves as a State Commissioner on the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation Commission.

Connie Rankin 61-otu7fXoL._UX250_Connie Rankin is the founder and President of Customized Real Estate Services (CRES) an award-winning Commercial Real Estate firm that is the Houston affiliate of ITRA Global with over 45 locations worldwide.  She began her career in Real estate back in the 1980’s by taking real estate classes at HCC.  She has since become a nationally-recognized leader in empowering and motivating others. Connie has also participated in both the HCC Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses program and the 2013 HCC Newspring Business Plan Competition (BPC).  She believes that both programs gave her the additional tools to expand her career even further.  In 2013, she was recognized by the Houston Business Journal as both Houston Fast 100 Growing Private Companies and the #1 Fastest-Growing Woman-Owned Businesses.  In 2014, she used her business plan experience to write a book proposal; that resulted in her landing a top literary agent and a publisher for her 1st book.   In 2015, Connie had the opportunity to participate in the Innovate Her competition offered by SBA. The only drawback – she had to prepare a full business plan within five days to meet the deadline. “Connie said, no worries, I can do this – because I participated in the 2013 HCC Business Plan Competition!”  Released in April 2017, Connie’s book, God Gave Us Wings has since become an Amazon bestseller in her category.  Connie is also making a donation from her book sales to the the HCC Center for Entrepreneurship when anyone purchases a book and shares it on Facebook with their copy holding the book and using the hashtag #HCC and #GGUW.  Congratulations Connie and thank you!

Michael FloresMichael D. Flores is a Public Information Officer with the U.S. Small Business Administration Office of Disaster Assistance Field Operations Center –West in Sacramento, CA. Michael is responsible for providing timely and accurate information about the agency’s disaster assistance program to key stakeholders, national and local media outlets, the general public and all levels of Federal, State, and local officials.  Michael began his career at SBA’s Office of Disaster Assistance (ODA) in 2005 as a Loan Officer in Sacramento, CA. He was promoted to Senior Loan Officer in 2006 and transitioned into his current role as Public Information Officer in 2009.  Michael has served in key leadership roles in his previous career outside of SBA, which has prepared him for the role in which he now serves. Michael has provided key communications efforts in some of America’s largest disasters, including Hurricanes Ike and Gustav in 2008, and Hurricane Isaac and Super Storm Sandy in 2012.

Special Thanks!

Both PermitUsNow and CRES became prize money sponsors of the HCC Newspring Business Plan Competition in 2017 and both Helen Callier and Connie Rankin have committed to sponsor the competition again in 2018!  HCC thanks both Helen and Connie for being outstanding examples of the success that can be attained by leveraging the learnings and connections offered through HCC’s small business offerings and for “paying it forward” by sponsoring BPC prize money to seed other entrepreneurs!

This event is brought to you by the HCC NW Center for Entrepreneurship and strategic partner SCORE:

HCC_Logo                            score logo 2014

More About Our Speakers:


September 19, 2017
1:00 pm - 4:00 pm




HCC Alief Hayes Campus-Ctr. for Entrepreneurship-3rd Floor – Room A319/A320
2811 Hayes Rd.
Houston, TX 77082 United States
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