In this down economy, some businesses are getting a hand up, thanks to Audrey L. Godwin. Since forming the Godwin Group in 2003, she has helped start-ups to multi-million dollar companies achieve financial goals that improve access to funding and ultimately enhance the quality of individual business owner’s lives to help improve their communities.

The U.S. Small Business Administration has selected Godwin as the 2012 Washington Financial Services Champion of the Year for her company’s positive impact on scores of small business owners and results from years of contributions and advocacy efforts.

Godwin is known as the “velvet brick” for her direct yet sensitive approach when mentoring entrepreneurs. She volunteers as an accounting consultant for the NW and South Sound Women’s Business Centers, contributes to Femme Finance radio program on 1150 KKNW in Bellevue, and gives back to the community by teaching business and financial workshops.