The Newport County Chamber of Commerce and the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) announced earlier today at a press conference that they have signed an official partnership agreement that will bring SBA workshops to the business community of Greater Newport.

The partnership was created to educate and empower the existing business community and entrepreneurs by providing resources, technical assistance, counseling and training to grow small businesses. The Chamber, SBA, the Rhode Island Small Business Development Center and Rhode Island SCORE will conduct the monthly workshops on the fourth Wednesday of each month at Innovate Newport, a newly renovated coworking, private office, and meeting space designed to spark innovation and build community.

“The SBA is steadfast in its dedication to ensuring small businesses in Rhode Island have the resources they need to succeed,” said SBA District Director, Mark S. Hayward in a prepared statement. “Together with the Newport County Chamber of Commerce, we will provide expert trainers to cover multiple topics that will help local entrepreneurs start, grow, and expand their small business.”

Photos provided by Newport County Chamber of Commerce

“The Chamber is proud to serve its members and the broader business community by partnering with the SBA to bring comprehensive business tools, resources and training seminars to the region on a regular basis” said Erin Donavan Boyle, Executive Director of the Newport County Chamber of Commerce in a prepared statement. “Small businesses, startups and budding entrepreneurs need access to a variety of resources to help their businesses grow and this series of workshops will provide exposure to experts in a variety of fields, at no cost to the business. We know this resource will prove to enhance the broader entrepreneurial and innovative ecosystem in the Greater Newport region”. 

The first workshop will be held at 12:00 p.m. Wednesday, August 28th at Innovate Newport located at 513 Broadway in Newport, R.I. The topic will cover information about insurance for small businesses. These events will be free and open to members of the public. Seating is limited so advanced registration is required. For the schedule of upcoming events, visit

Ryan Belmore is the Owner and Publisher of What'sUpNewp. 
Belmore has been involved with What’sUpNewp since shortly after its launch in 2012, proudly leading it to be named Best Local News Blog in Rhode Island by Rhode Island Monthly readers in 2018, 2019, and 2020 and an honorable mention in the Common Good Awards in 2021.

Born and raised in Rhode Island, Belmore graduated from Coventry High School and the Community College of Rhode Island. In addition to living in Newport for 10 years, he has lived in Portsmouth, Coventry, Providence, Smithfield, Burrillville, and East Greenwich.

Belmore currently serves as Vice President of the Board Of Directors for Fort Adams Trust and on the Board of Directors for Potter League For Animals. He previously served on the Board of Lucy's Hearth and the Arts & Cultural Alliance for Newport County.

Belmore and his wife, Jen, currently live in Alexandria, Virginia, a move they made in 2021. Read more about that here -

Belmore visits Newport every couple of weeks to support the 12+ paid contributors What'sUpNewp has on the ground across Rhode Island, a place he called home for 39 years.

Belmore is a member of Local Independent Online News (LION) Publishers, Society of Professional Journalists, and the North American Snowsports Journalists Association.

In 2020, Belmore was named Member of the Year by LION and won the Arts & Cultural Alliance of Newport County's Dominque Award.
Belmore can be contacted at and 401-662-1653.