Cherylin Atcitty: Native art on the Plaza

Submitted photo Cherylin Atcitty, co-owner of Atcitty’s on Taos Plaza, a new gallery featuring Native fine arts and crafts of Taos and the Southwest.

Atcitty's on Taos Plaza, a gallery featuring Native art and crafts, was recognized by the New Mexico Small Business Development Center network in the 55th legislative session, after owner Cherylin Atcitty made a presentation to legislators at a virtual roundhouse event this year.

Atcitty, who grew up in the Navajo Nation, has made it a goal to feature Navajo and local Native artists in her gallery. Recently opened in 2020, Atcitty's sells everything from handmade local jewelry to fine art to blue corn pancake mix.

In order to make the most of her first business venture, Atcitty met with Anwar Kaelin, center director of the Small Business Development Center (SBDC) at UNM-Taos.

"Anwar helped me with developing business ideas [and] figuring out codes for forms," said Atcitty in a press release. "He helped me obtain my EIN number, registering my business with the state of New Mexico to ensure I was operating legally and lawfully as a business."

Atcitty said Kaelin went the extra mile to help her business succeed, keeping in contact to keep her up-to-date on training, networking events and other opportunities. "It was constant communication back and forth," Atcitty said of Kaelin's help.

Because of the constant help from Kaelin and the SBDC, Atcitty said she built a solid foundation upon which to grow.

USDA seeks applications for rural development grants

The U.S. Department of Agriculture Deputy Under Secretary for Rural Development, Justin Maxson, announced April 1 the USDA will be accepting applications for grants "to improve rural transportation systems," according to a press release.

The Rural Business Development Grant program will be responsible for the grants. The USDA is looking for applicants such as organizations (no individuals will be directly funded) who are aiming to "provide rural communities with training and technical assistance to improve transportation services and facilities.

Applicants must submit their application to the nearest USDA office no later than June 30 by 4:30 p.m. Applications will be scored and selected "on a competitive basis."

The USDA said it is encouraging applicants to pursue projects and ideas that help form well-rounded rural communities, and "build robust and sustainable economies through strategic investments in infrastructure, partnerships, and innovation."

To find out additional information, go to rd.usda.gov/nm.

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