New organization strives to be the voice for small businesses in Pennsylvania

HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) — A new local organization called the Go Big Small Biz Network is working to give small business owners in and around Pennsylvania a voice in the state capital.

The new Go Big Small Biz Network was founded by a married couple, former entrepreneurs and business owners, Tracey and Jeff Wakeen. Prior to the formation of the new network, the Wakeens owned and operated a popular Cumberland County women’s gym that at one time had 800 members.

This female fitness center later lost half of its members and had to close its doors during the 2020 pandemic.

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“Like so many others, our small businesses in Pennsylvania have suffered greatly during the pandemic,” Tracey Wakeen said. “It was a painful lesson that small businesses need to be more involved in policy making. We decided to do something about it and formed the Go Big Small Biz Network. We intend to give small businesses a big voice in the government halls.”

The formation of this network was in response to the difficulties experienced by many other small business owners during the 2020 pandemic. According to the network, 26% of small businesses closed their doors over the course of a year and a half – additionally, 43% of small business owners couldn’t afford their rent as of August 2022.

The main goals of the Go Big Small Biz Network are:

  • Raise
  • advocate
  • Communicate

According to the network’s website, once you join, you’ll become part of a team that has lobbyists “on the hill” championing and speaking up for small businesses — making sure your lawmakers don’t approve anything that could harm your business. In addition, members will be instantly notified via notifications on their phone whenever positive or negative small business legislation is proposed.

What is most striking about this new network is their aim to also communicate on behalf of your small business by helping to promote your business across the Commonwealth. This includes the use of various media outlets such as radio, billboards, television and social media.

The overall aim of this communication is to encourage and promote local shopping, shopping and doing business. According to the network, shopping locally from small businesses helps boost local economies — every $1 spent locally equates to $3 going back into your local economy.

To join the Go Big Small Biz Network or for more information, you can visit their website at or email them to

According to the network, there are currently more than 1 million small businesses in Pa., accounting for 90% of all businesses in Keystone State. New organization strives to be the voice for small businesses in Pennsylvania

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