Creative Ideas Catering Named Northern California’s Small Business Person of the Year

TMC Financing Client, Lina Mills, has been recognized by the Small Business Administration for Tremendous Growth and Accomplishments

TMC Financing is pleased to announce that Lina Mills of Creative Ideas Catering was named Northern California’s 2022 Small Business Person of the Year.

Lina Mills, CEO and Founder of Creative Ideas Catering, is a client of TMC Financing. By utilizing the SBA 504 Program, TMC Financing helped Mills purchase a property in San Francisco with ninety percent financing to gain stability for her business.

Creative Ideas Catering also received support during the pandemic from several of SBA’s COVID Relief Programs: Restaurant Revitalization Fund, a COVID Economic Injury Disaster Loan and two loans from the Paycheck Protection Program.

Creative Ideas Catering is a one hundred percent woman-owned and immigrant-owned business. Mills has been in the catering business for nearly 30 years and started Creative Ideas in 2013, during a time of financial and health hardships.


“Lina is one of the most genuine, hardworking and passionate business owners that I know,” states Anna O’Brien, TMC Financing’s Senior Vice President who administered the SBA 504 Loan. “Her path to success was not easy, but she persevered. She believes that anything is possible if you put your heart and soul into it. She has inspired countless other women to also pursue their dreams.”

Creative Ideas Catering currently has seven employees and over 200 clients, serving all of San Francisco’s Bay Area. The dishes are globally inspired by Lina’s unique Latin flare plus her husband’s Mexican roots.

“Purchasing her building in San Francisco was a proud and emotional milestone for Lina and her team,” states O’Brien. “TMC Financing is so happy we could play a part in this huge achievement for Creative Ideas Catering.”

About TMC Financing and the SBA 504 Program

The SBA 504 loan program focuses on helping business owners buy, construct, or refinance owner-occupied commercial real estate. It provides affordable, 25-year fixed-rate financing with down payments as low as 10 percent. The terms of the 504 loan ensure that business owners can preserve precious working capital.

With expertise stretching back to its founding in 1981, TMC Financing is a leader in helping business owners to navigate the SBA 504 program. It has secured more than $10 billion in SBA 504 commercial real estate financing for over 6,000 small businesses, resulting in the creation of more than 60,000 jobs.

TMC Financing, led by award-winning serial entrepreneur Barbara Morrison, has a mission to promote economic development and job creation for small businesses within its three-state service area, Arizona, California and Nevada.