GNO Inc. President and CEO Michael Hecht, a Louisiana native, works with 10 parishes in the New Orleans region to spearhead economic development. He previously served as the director of the $232 million Louisiana Economic Development Small Business Recovery Program, designed to revitalize the small and independent business sector after hurricanes Katrina and Rita. He also established the $90 million Louisiana Revolving Capital Fund, the first of its kind in the nation. Prior to repatriating to Louisiana from New York City in 2006, Hecht served as an assistant commissioner in the NYC Department of Small Business Services. He developed and ran NYC Business Solutions, a new initiative designed to help 200,000-plus small employers prosper and grow. Hecht holds a master’s degree from Stanford Graduate School of Business, and has lectured internationally on entrepreneurship and economic development.