Mariah CarnaKathie Cravens

I guess you can say I grew up in international trade.  In my mid 20’s, I went to work for a small U.S. manufacturing company as an administrative assistant to the V.P./General Manager. Two weeks after I started, my boss went on vacation and left me alone to ship 4 – 40′ containers to Central America. Oh my goodness! I was totally amazed when the shipment arrived at the final destination and we actually got paid! If I would have had an export consultant to guide me and help with the export process, I would have had the needed confidence that we were doing it right.

Years later, while representing my U.S. Company at an international trade show in Utrecht, Holland, I met what later became my British husband.  While living and working in England, I found the British Institute of Export in London, a comprehensive export training institute to advance the knowledge and skills of international trade. I thought then, why does the U.S. not have a similar accredited institution?

In Sept. 2013, I was hired to start an International Trade Center at the Small Business Development Center in Champaign, IL.  It was then I learned of NASBITE (National Association of Small Business International Educators). I was so impressed because here was the training institution in the U.S. I had hoped for so many years before. A few months later, I sat the CGBP exam and was honored to become a NASBITE Certified Global Business Professional. A few years later, I obtained NASBITE International Certified Trainer accreditation. In May, 2018, I was the recipient of the IL Governor’s Export Award for export awareness and development.

In July 2018, due to family circumstances, I relocated to Middle Tennessee. I am honored to have the opportunity to share my years of training and experience with others who are interested in advancing their international business careers. The focus of BK Export Consulting is to help companies become more competitive in the international market, have a profitable and rewarding experience, and avoid the ‘pitfalls’ of international trade.

Kathie can be contacted at: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.