U.S. Treasury Secretary Jack Lew kicked off National Small Business Week by touring a minority-owned construction company in Rockville, Md., Monday.
Owning M. Luis Construction has been a tough business for sisters Natalia and Cidalia Luis. But everyday, the duo reflects on what they've accomplished in the male-dominated asphalt manufacturing and construction industry.
"It was difficult to say the very least. Imagine an immigrant family with a very thick accent and just a dream -- the American dream..., " Cidalia Luis said.
Their parents started the company in 1985 with the help of a $2.5 million small business loan from the state. Without the small business loan, the company -- worth over $60 million -- never could have flourished. Lew toured the company Monday to see how critical small business loans are to the local economy.
Natalia Luis added, "To have the U.S. Department of Treasury be able to help organizations, companies like ourselves, be able to have that kick start to come into the local economy and therefore make an instrumental difference in the local, regional and many times national economy."
M. Luis is the only minority and woman-owned asphalt manufacturer in the region.