SBA Administrator Isabella Casillas Guzman ceremonially swore in Dilawar Syed as Deputy Administrator of the U.S. Small Business Administration in Washington, D.C. Syed was sworn in following a bipartisan Senate confirmation vote of 54-42.
“Deputy Administrator Syed’s demonstrated passion and experience will be a value-add to the SBA as we continue to build upon the small business boom achieved during the Biden-Harris Administration,” said Administrator Guzman. “As we grow the economy from the middle out and bottom up with President Biden’s historic Investing in America agenda, Deputy Administrator Syed will help the SBA as we ensure small businesses and innovative startups can access capital, grow revenues, and get support and mentorship as they navigate marketplace challenges and pursue opportunities.
“I am honored to serve as Deputy Administrator supporting millions of small businesses across America,” said Deputy Administrator Syed. “The Biden-Harris Administration’s mission of building a strong, competitive, and equitable American economy speaks to my own experience as an entrepreneur. I couldn’t be more ready to work alongside Administrator Guzman as we expand access to capital, networks, and resources that entrepreneurs need to realize their American Dream.”
Dilawar Syed comes to the SBA from the State Department, where he served as Special Representative for Commercial and Business Affairs, advocated for U.S. companies to compete and win abroad, and helped ensure U.S. competitiveness in global markets. He mobilized the private sector to support the people of Ukraine in the wake of Russia’s invasion, advocated for major commercial deals in strategic sectors such as aviation and defense, energy, critical minerals, and technology, and pushed for better business environments in bilateral visits and multilateral forums such as APEC, the Africa Leaders Summit, and the Summit of the Americas.
Before joining the Biden Administration, Syed was CEO at Lumiata, an AI healthcare company focused on reducing healthcare costs and improving patient outcomes. Previously, Syed was President at Freshworks. He founded Enterprise software company’s North America business overseeing sales and marketing, customer success, and partnerships. Earlier in his career, Syed oversaw business operations at Yahoo!’s Platform & Infrastructure Division and was a product manager at Siebel Systems and SAP.
Syed also served as the founding Chair of the California Entrepreneurship Task Force with the Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development, on President Obama’s White House Commission on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPIs) and chaired the White House Initiative on AAPIs Economic Growth Committee.
Syed holds an M.B.A. from The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and earned a B.A. in Economics and Computer Science from The University of Texas at Austin.