ACE Staff

Grace Fricks
President and CEO
Joshua Brackett
Chief Financial Officer
Sandy Headley
Chief Lending Officer
Candace Thomas
Executive Assistant to the President

Maria Peck
Director, Women's Business Center

Soraya Torres
WBC Administrative Assistant

Mitch Belton
Commercial Loan Officer 

Vonda Echols
Small Business Loan Officer

Courtney Lynn
Small Business Underwriter


Karen Davis
Strategic Initiatives Director

Ellen Williams
Business Advisory Counselor

Karen McLain

Guy Ramos
Client Counselor
Toni Wiley
Loan Operations Assistant
Candace McClure
Accounting Assistant

Jeff Moody
Grant Writer

Randal LeDet
Small Business Specialist
Stella Kilpatrick
AmeriCorps VISTA Volunteer

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Many thanks to our partners for your ongoing support of ACE and its mission! 


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Justice Fund 

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ACE Borrower named as Young Entrepreneur of the Year by the SBA Georgia District Office

The Georgia District Office of the U.S. Small Business Administration announced this year's award recipients for its Georgia Small Business Week awards program and an ACE borrower was among them. Receiving the award for Young Entrepreneur of the Year is Mr. Travis Allen, founder and President of iSchool Initiative


Allen realized in 2009 that technology was largely under used in schools and the relationship between educators and technology could only be enhanced through digital learning. Travis wanted to create a learning dynamic in which the students were also teachers who could help improve the learning environment by embracing technology. iSchool Initiative was created to help school systems integrate technology into their classrooms and is now at the forefront of the business movement towards social entrepreneurship.


Allen is a young visionary for digital learning in the classroom. Before graduating high school he created a viral YouTube video on revolutionizing America's education through the use of mobile technology. Today, he is a senior at Kennesaw State University where he operates his growing non-profit organization, iSchool Initiative. With the support of his team, Travis has presented in over 26 states & three continents, allowing him to reach an audience of over 200,000 people. He has been featured on CNNHuffington Post and Forbes magazine. In 2012, he was the winner of Google Young Minds competition and visited the White House for Education Datapalooza. Allen is quickly becoming one of the most influential leaders of the emerging digital learning movement.


Each year since 1963, the President has issued a proclamation calling for the celebration of Small Business Week.  This year, National Small Business Week is May 4-8, 2015.  "National Small Business Week is a perfect opportunity to take time to celebrate the achievements of the small business community." said Terri Denison, the SBA's Georgia District Director.  "Here in Georgia we are honored to recognize members of the Georgia small business community and their champions from around the state."

A $10,000 loan from ACE helped this business double their revenue 



Rob Landers is the founder of R L Commercial Systems LLC, a company which provides janitorial services, office supply management, and comprehensive facility management services. Landers received a loan from ACE in January 2015 for just $10,000.  He had a difficult time obtaining capital from traditional lenders due to his student loan debt. Since then, he has already signed on new accounts and is currently on track to more than double his revenues from FY2014 to FY2015. Landers is thinking big and has a dream to build a business not just to create personal wealth, but also to serve as an inspiration to others. RL Commercial Systems is committed to actively contributing to the communities they serve through personal involvement, charitable donations, school partner programs and cooperation with local emergency response organizations. Landers is extremely grateful to ACE for helping him take his business to the next level.


Do you need a loan for your small business? Visit ACE's website at

Who is ACE? 

Through the eyes of a ten-year-old


Georgia is pictured here in one of the vendor booths at the 1st Annual
Women Investing in Successful Entrepreneurs (WISE) Ride held recently. All proceeds from the Harley Davidson bike ride went to support WISE- a program designed to support women entrepreneurs through access to capital and education. Already displaying entrepreneurial traits, Georgia bartered for a bracelet by helping set-up, straighten-up and clean-up this booth!


Georgia is the daughter of Candace Thomas, ACE Executive Assistant to the President. She often rides the bus to the office in the afternoons where she observes the buzz of activity that is ACE. This is what she wrote "at work" recently. 


by: Georgia Thomas

ACE is a group of people that help new entrepreneurs make their business' grow into huge ones. My mother works at ACE. She is the "Executive Assistant to the President." The "President," or the boss, is Grace Fricks. She has been all around the world helping new entrepreneurs make their business' huge. The staff also helps a lot. Here is a list of some of the staff members, Candace Thomas (my mom), Jeff Moody, Toni Wiley, Candace McClure, Guy Ramos, Courtney Lynn, Sandy Headley, Karen McLain, Joshua Brackett, and Grace Fricks (boss). They have many events at many different places where people have set up stands that people buy from. Some events have little games that are like if you have this ticket you win a prize, but usually after the game, Grace gives a speech at every event to tell everyone how thankful she is about helping these new entrepreneurs. ACE has helped many people over the last fifteen years, and I hope for more to come. When I grow up and I want to start a new business, I will go straight to ACE. If you just started a business, come down to ACE. They will help you a lot. 

Georgia has big dreams herself. She hopes to be a paleontologist, an Olympic gymnast, a chef, an astronomer, and to travel the world like Grace Fricks when she grows up. But if she decides to own her own business, we know she will go straight to ACE!
ACE Founder and CEO receives 2015 Inspirational Leader in Community award


Grace Fricks was recently recognized as the 2015 Inspirational Leader in Community by The Mike Cottrell College of Business at the University of North Georgia's 2nd annual Celebrating Inspirational Leaders luncheon.


Fricks is pictured above with several ACE borrowers and ACE's Treasurer of the Board of Directors, Mitchelle Johnson. The women in this photo are part of a group of ACE women entrepreneurs, the High Potential Group, who have annual revenues of $500,000 and above. The women are working with ACE both individually and as a group to help each other with their businesses. They were invited to attend as Fricks' guests as it is safe to say that she gets inspiration from them, and them from her.


(Pictured left to right are Mitchelle Johnson, Treasurer, ACE Board of Directors; Aysha Cooper, ACE borrower and owner of SarahCare of Snellville; Nicole Wimpy, ACE borrower and owner of Jolie-Day Spa, Dahlonega Market Place, and Gold City Growlers- all Dahlonega businesses; Grace; Laura Estrada, ACE borrower and owner of Pueblo's Mexican Cuisine, with locations in Dahlonega, Gainesville, and Cumming; Machi Lee, ACE borrower and owner of Shenanigans Irish Restaurant & Pub in Dahlonega; Carla Carson, ACE borrower and owner of Anytime Fitness in Decatur; and Deb Rowe, ACE borrower and owner of Shenanigans Irish Restaurant& Pub and The Bourbon Street Grill, both in Dahlonega.)


In addition to Fricks, Jim Mathis, President & CEO of North Georgia Community Foundation, and Lynn Jackson, Administrator of Northside Hospital Forsyth, were recognized for their inspirational leadership in north Georgia. The inspirational keynote speaker was 2015 World Champion, 2-time Olympic medalist, Elana Meyers Taylor. She recently became the first woman to win a world championship for the U.S. in women's bobsledding.

 Maria Peck presents at the 12th Annual Thirteenth Congressional District Jobs Fair hosted by Congressman David Scott 

Congressman David Scott and Maria Peck, Director of ACE's Women's Business Center at the 12th Annual Thirteenth Congressional District Jobs Fair
Maria Peck, Director of ACE's SBA Women's Business Center, presented last week at the 12th Annual Thirteenth Congressional District Jobs Fair hosted by Congressman David Scott and held at the Georgia International Convention Center. Peck presented on both Access to Capital and SBA Resources available for small business owners. More than 18,000 people were in attendance. 
 What would your small business do 
with $100,000? 

ACE Business Advisory Services 



Do YOU need help with YOUR business?  ACE's Business Advisory Services are available to ACE borrowers at no additional charge on a personal basis.  We can help you with several aspects of your business, including financial management, marketing, staffing and strategic planning to name just a few.  ACE is invested in your success and everyone in the ACE family is ready to support your efforts. 


Ellen Williams, ACE's Business Advisory Counselor, was recently asked the following question: 


I just finished doing my taxes for my business. Will my tax return really help me understand the financials of my business? 


Her advice follows. 


With tax season coming to a close, you may be ready for a break from the tedium of poring over numbers.  Resist the temptation!  Though critical, the numbers you submit to the IRS may be the least helpful in operating your business.  As you know, managing your business well involves making many decisions daily if not hourly, often in response to an ever changing marketplace.  Relying on a financial statement that you look at once a year would be risky. And, if possible, your accountant may have even employed legal techniques to reduce your bottom line and tax liability.  However, this could distort your view of how your business is doing.


Now that you've organized your books for Uncle Sam, do the same for yourself.  If you're not already doing so, be sure to prepare and analyze monthly or quarterly financial statements that will tell you:

  • how your business is performing over time, indicating if you're making the right decisions to succeed;
  • which product or service lines are most profitable so you'll know where to allocate your resources;
  • whether your expenses are in line and if you should invest in new equipment or initiatives;
  • what amount you can afford to pay yourself. 

For more information please contact Ellen Williams at

  1 Day Accelerator with Venture Capitalist and Start-up Catalyst KP Reddy



Our strategic start-up partner, Opportunity Hub (the nation's largest diverse and inclusive multi-campus co-working space, entrepreneurship school and incubator) is hosting a 1-day intensive start-up accelerator on Saturday, May 2, 2015 from 10am - 6pm at Newbirth in Lithonia, GA. Registration is only $100.


The OHUB 1-day accelerator is perfect for the following persons:


1. Corporate executives and business professionals interested in being more intrapreneurial in their existing company or starting a business in the future

2. Existing service based business owners interested in creating scalable products and services

3. College students interested in starting a high growth company

4. People wanting to pursue their purpose and passion


Is that you?


If so, we encourage you to attend OHUB's 1 day (all day) intensive accelerator.


Register here.


Perks for registration also include:


1. One month membership to OHUB

2. $5,000 partial scholarship to attend OHUB's 6 month pre-accelerator entrepreneurial certification program that starts on May 19th.



It's just that simple. Access to Capital for Entrepreneurs (ACE), through our Georgia Green Loans (GGL) program, makes loans every day to help Georgia's small businesses, statewide, reduce their energy costs and improve their sustainability. 

Good examples of companies seeking to improve energy efficiency through improved facilities and operations include restaurants that may have high utility bills, installers of home insulation products and lighting retrofits. The list goes on and the word is out. ACE and GGL are your partners in creating an eco-friendly environment and attracting environmentally-conscious customers. 


"Our relationship with ACE helped us pursue our goals with Solar Energy USA. Now our solar panel system is a reality." Bob Hoyer, Academic Solutions


  • 1.99% Interest Rate
  • Terms up to 5 years
  • Energy savings statements for 1 year prior and 1 year after required
  • Subject to underwriting approval
  • Non-profits are eligible
  • New construction is not eligible

For more information please contact

 Sandy Headley

(770) 402-1776 








  • Que debe cubrir su seguro
  • Cuando comienza y cuando termina su cobertura
  • Que seguros debe tener su compania
  • Liability : Seguro para Usted con los clientes y los epleados
  • Property : Seguro a la propiedad. 
  • Work compensation : Seguro para los Empleados.
  • Como utilizar su seguro para evitar pagos millonarios.
  • Como su Compania de seguros se puede encargar de sus problemas estando asegurado.



Jueves, 30 de abril de 2015 desde las 18:00 hasta las 20:00 (Hora de verano oriental Hora de Estados Unidos (Nueva York))





Employment Law: 

Hiring, Firing, & Avoiding Employees 


Do you have questions about:  

  • Employee Benefits
  • Employees vs Interns 
    vs Contractors
  • Laws behind hiring & firing
This is a Great Chance for YOU to Get All YOUR Questions Answered by a Professional!



Do you know the difference in employing direct employees, independent contractors, and interns? Are you following federal laws when hiring/ firing your employees while keeping them updated on policies?


Come have dinner with one of the top Employment Lawyers in the Metro Atlanta area, Nwa'ndo Ume-Nwagbo, and learn about the differences between employees, independent contractors, and interns. Hear the do's and don'ts of hiring/firing employees, the importance of employee manuals, HR Policies, and more. Join us & bring all your questions about employment law!



WHEN: May 7, 2015 from 6:00pm - 8:00pm

WHERE: 10 College Street NW, Norcross, GA 30071






ACE Loans is an equal opportunity lender, provider and employer.