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Where are they now?

FSB checked in with past winners of the Small Business Administration's National Small Business Person of the Year award to find out how they and their companies are doing today.

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More sales and space for Native Angels
More sales and space for Native Angels
Year: 2007
Winners: Bobbie Jacobs-Ghaffar (pictured on left) and Lesa Jacobs, owners and cofounders
Company: Native Angels Home Care and Hospice, in Lumberton, N.C.

Entrepreneurial sisters Bobbie Jacobs-Ghaffar and Lesa Jacobs have had a busy year since winning the national SBA award in April 2007. Back then, revenues at Native Angels Home Care and Hospice were $9 million. Today, the business has grown to $12 million in annual sales.

Jacobs-Ghaffar, who previously worked in the nonprofit home health care sector, and Jacobs, a nurse, are both members of North Carolina's Lumbee tribe. They were inspired to start their company in 2001 after caring for two aunts who died from cancer. When they saw what a difference the aid of a hospice agency made in the quality of life of one of their aunts, they saw a niche.

Native Angels will move into a new 28-acre corporate campus in Lumberton next month that will house the company's corporate offices, as well as a restaurant, a pharmacy and a chapel for the benefit of both employees and the local community. The sisters are also planning their first residential venture: an eight-bed in-patient hospice unit.

"Hospices are things that Native Americans and African-Americans haven't embraced," says Jacobs-Ghaffar. "We come at it with respect for elders, family, extended family and a connection to the land."

NEXT: A Hawaiian business eyes the mainland
Last updated April 23 2008: 2:06 PM ET

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