Derek Tonn

How do your colleagues describe you?

I love to meet people, share ideas, and write. Friends tease that I enjoy writing a little TOO much…as I have never met a keyboard that I couldn’t wear out.

Why do you do what you do?

Helping individuals work to take their “big ideas,” their hobbies and/or passions, and create a reliable and sustainable source of income (even creating jobs for several other individuals in the process) is easily the most enjoyable work I have ever done. Taking my decades of experience to try and help others have a rewarding career.



Bethel University – B.A., Business (Marketing and Management emphases)

University of St. Thomas – M.B.A., Management


Prior to my work with the Small Business Development Center in southwestern Oregon, I spent seven years working in higher education at two institutions in Minnesota, as well as 22+ years working full-time in creating and operating my own small business. I worked with approximately 650 clients across eleven time zones, working across .edu, .gov, .mil and .com industry sectors. I also worked for two years with the Small Business Development Center in southwestern Minnesota, advising dozens of clients across a broad collection of industries.