Five Generations of Electricians Lighting Up California: Joe Sumpter

Joe Sumpter is a licensed electrical and solar contractor and owner of Connector Electric, proudly serving the Southern California region since 1989. He started his business because he wanted to provide something meaningful to the community and wants his work and services to be around long after he is gone. As a third-generation electrician with a son and grandson following in his footsteps, he will likely accomplish that goal. But he came close to losing it all.

Like so many small businesses, COVID-19 impacted Joe and his team. He had to adapt and switch to remote work, which was expensive, and entire teams were sick and unable to work for extended periods of time. Although business was slow, Joe continued to pay his staff their salaries, which nearly drained his life savings. He heard there were programs available that could help him, and that’s when he found The Center by Lendistry’s website and connected with an advisor.

Joe first went to a bank to inquire about a loan but was turned away because of the size of his company. At The Center, an advisor guided him through the process of pursuing an Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) loan, including helping him gather the correct forms and documentation that he needed. As a result, Joe successfully secured $478K in EIDL funding.

“The Center was a godsend because they broke down complex technical terms into layman’s terms that an engineer could understand. When I was denied the loan, I thought that was it. I was working 16-hour days to keep everything afloat, and I would not have been able to do it on my own. The support that I received saved my business,” said Joe.

The Center offers free one-on-one consulting for small business owners, including procurement, marketing and social media, QuickBooks, and business plan development. Advisors provide assistance tailored to individualized needs and equip entrepreneurs with the resources they need to meet their goals and reach their dreams.

Joe tells other business owners he knows to connect with The Center and schedule an appointment to discuss their needs and obtain support. Now that his business is financially back to where it was pre-pandemic, he plans to apply for an SBA loan to expand his business, but he will not do it without guidance from The Center.

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