History of NASE

The NASE Through The Years

Here are some of the highlights in the NASE's history. For more news about the NASE visit our press releases.


  • The NASE Growth Grants program surpassed One Million Dollars distributed to members. To celebrate, the program has increased the total number of $4,000 grants to sixteen per year. Additionally, the Dependent Scholarship program increased the total number of $3,000 scholarships to five per year.
  • In response to the devastating impacts of the pandemic, the NASE supported the COVID Relief Package, calling it “Bold and Ambitious".


  • NASE announced that Dell will be a sponsor for our Growth Grant program as we continue to empower the self-employed and microbusiness community.
  • In an effort to aid the small businesses and the self-employed affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, the NASE provided special Growth Grants to over 50 members.
  • NASE partners with MetLife to offer current and future NASE members a new association member benefit of accident insurance.


  • NASE attended the White House Rose Garden Ceremony announcing the New HRA expansion as we have advocated on this issue for several years since the passage of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and subsequent guidance in 2013 restricting HRA use by small employers.
  • NASE President & CEO Keith Hall testified before the House Small Business Committee about the challenges and opportunities small business owners face when making decisions about their retirement.
  • During Longest Government Shutdown in U.S. History, NASE call on Congress and the White House to work together for the benefit of the small business community and the country as a whole.


  • In honor of National Women’s Small Business Month and the 30thAnniversary of groundbreaking legislation, H.R. 5050, also known as the Women’s Business Ownership Act of 1988, the NASE recognized the powerful role women entrepreneurs play in helping our nation’s economy grow and prosper.
  • NASE President Keith Hall testified before the House Committee on Small Business about Occupational Hazards: How Excessive Licensing Hurts Small Business.
  • NASE is a founding member of the newly formed Small Business Roundtable with NSBA, the Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council, National Association of Women Business Owners, the U.S. Black Chambers, and the Asian/Pacific Islander American Chamber of Commerce & Entrepreneurship.


  • NASE President & CEO was invited by the House Small Business Committee to sit on a panel to discuss the Affordable Care Act and healthcare changes for small businesses.
  • The NASE enhances its member directory by launching NextBizThing.com, a fully customizable member directory to make it easy to search for small business on the web.
  • The National Association for the Self-Employed partners with other small business associations urging Congress to take expeditious steps to ensure the timely confirmation of qualified pending nominees to administration positions as it is feared their delay with harm the economy.


  • The NASE relocated its Headquarters from Grapevine, Texas 30 minutes north to Frisco, Texas.
  • NASE Champions 21st Century Cares Act, which includes a provision that allows for Health Reimbursement Arrangements to be used by the self-employed.
  • The National Association for the Self-Employed partners with the Kogod School of Business at American University in Washington DC to conduct a study about the On-Demand or “gig’ economy.
  • The NASE signs on to a letter from the Coalition to Promote Independent Entrepreneurs which aimed to urge Congress not to resurrect the Obama Administration’s state grant program to address the misclassification of workers.
  • The National Association for the Self-Employed signs on to multiple letters supporting the Small Business Health Care Relief Act (S. 3060, H.R. 5447)


  • Over 66% of small business owners responding to a new survey conducted by the National Association for the Self-Employed (NASE) ranked “decreasing monthly premiums” as the one thing they would change about their current health care plan. View full Survey.
  • NASE attends high profile meetings with treasury and HHS officials. NASE President and CEO Keith Hall attended a meeting with U.S. Treasury Secretary Lew earlier this month. The meeting brought together CEOs of several small business associations, including National Federation of Independent Businesses, Business Forward, National Gay and Lesbian Chamber, Main Street Alliance, National Small Business Association, Small Business and Entrepreneurship Council, and Small Business Majority.
  • National Association for the Self-Employed announces expansion of 2015 “Growth Grant” Awards. NASE is expanding the Growth Grant program to award over $48,000 in small business grants, an increase from the $20,000 awarded in 2014.


  • The National Association for the Self-Employed (NASE) is pleased to provide enthusiastic support for H.R. 5860, Small Business Healthcare Relief Act of 2014, which would allow for standalone health reimbursement arrangements (HRAs) for small employers (with 49 employees or less).
  • The NASE launches enhanced resources for small business community at 34th annual meeting. Association launches new website, with dedicated health care portal, focusing on enhanced member benefits and advocating for entrepreneurs.
  • The NASE asks for HRA Reprieve for 2015. The NASE along with the Council for Affordable Health Coverage, National Association for Home Builders, and the National Federation of Independent Business, asked congressional leaders to consider including language championed by Congressman Blackburn (R-TN) that would "prohibit the application of certain health insurance market requirements (no lifetime or annual limits and coverage of preventive health services) for Health Reimbursement Arrangements (HRAs) and similar accounts used by a small employer in 2015."
  • NASE comments on technical guidance issue on health reimbursement arrangements (HRAs). Health Reimbursement Accounts are employer-funded, tax-advantaged employer health benefit plans that reimburse employees for out-of-pocket medical expenses and individual health insurance premiums.


  • John Wright, Chairman of the NASE’s Board of Directors, announced that Keith Hall, NASE’s National Tax Advisor and twenty five year veteran of the Association assume its leadership as President and CEO.
  • Millions of small businesses to benefit from new IRS home office tax deduction option. After years of advocating for new rule, NASE applauds new IRS option providing simpler calculation for the home office tax deduction.
  • NASE calls for full year of open enrollment & delay of individual penalty. In a letter to the House Ways and Means Committee, the National Association for the Self-Employed the nation’s leading advocate and resource for the self-employed and micro-businesses, called on the U.S. Congress and the Administration to “immediately eliminate the open enrollment deadline and delay the individual mandate penalty for one-year.”
  • NASE releases “ACA in Brief”. The National Association for the Self-Employed released a comprehensive two-page brief on the impact of the Affordable Care Act on the self-employed, including some remaining questions the self-employed have as we approach the October 1, 2013 deadline for open enrollment in the Exchange marketplace.


  • NASE formerly requests hearing on small business tax bill (H.R.6102) The National Association for the Self-Employed formally requested a hearing on H.R. 6102, America's Small Business Tax Relief Act of 2012, by the House Ways and Means Subcommittee on Tax and Select Revenue.
  • $60,000 in College Scholarships awarded. Just as states across the nation are cutting financial aid due to budget shortfalls, the National Association for the Self-Employed awarded $60,000 in scholarship money to help 13 families send their children to college.
  • NASE sends letter of support for Senate Tax Extenders Bill. The NASE has joined other small-business organizations to support S. 2050, The Small Business Tax Extenders Act of 2012.
  • The National Association for the Self-Employed (NASE) is pleased to announce the 2012 Member Council, which met in Washington, D.C. May 2nd -4th. The council’s purpose is to serve as a sounding board for NASE leadership regarding programs, services and benefits that could help make NASE Membership an even greater value to micro-business owners and the self-employed.
  • NASE asks House Ways and Means to explore expired tax cuts for the self-employed. NASE submits statement for the record in an effort to ensure that the House Ways and Means Committee move forward on tax reform that encompasses the self-employed community, specifically, the individual income tax rate, health insurance premium deduction, and the start-up deduction.


  • As President Barack Obama travelled the country selling his American Jobs Act, the NASE released its new small business Startup Kit.
  • Glaringly absent from the jobs debate has been specific proposals that speak to how to encourage and support startups and the self-employed, our nation’s biggest job creators. The NASE introduced a National Self-Employment Initiative to get the conversation started.
  • Just as states across the nation are cutting financial aid due to budget shortfalls, the association awarded $52,000 in scholarship money to help 10 families send their children to college. Benjamin Seidel of Columbia, Mo., was named the NASE’s Future Entrepreneur for 2011.
  • Pat Bennett, owner of La Mesa, Calif.-based small business Wicked Coursing, received a $20,000 award from the NASE’s Growth Grant™ Program.
  • John Wright, Chairman of the NASE’s Board of Directors, announced that Kristie Arslan, a ten-year veteran of the association, has assumed its leadership as President and CEO.
  • The NASE was very active in suggesting ways to Congress that the gap might be closed, including small changes to current tax code and tax policy. The association also continued the conversation on how the Small Business Jobs Act has affected the self-employed community.
  • Micro-businesses and the self-employed believe that spending for domestic programs, job creation initiatives, tax cuts and federal subsidies should be scaled back to address the deficit, according to a survey by the NASE.
  • Essential to starting and managing a business in this age of technology is the ability for businesses to accept credit and debit cards. This exclusive benefit offering to association members will help our self-employed members meet the needs of their customers.
  • The association was thrilled to lend support to legislation which would simplify taxes for millions of small business owners and address an unfair tax on health insurance premiums for the self-employed.
  • Since 1981, the National Association for the Self-Employed has offered tools and resources to help America’s smallest businesses thrive. The NASE is continuing that legacy in its 30th year by launching a new scholarship program, Succeed Scholarships™, to assist entrepreneurs in obtaining the knowledge they need to succeed.
  • In today’s difficult economy, the NASE - the nation’s leading nonprofit association representing America’s smallest businesses - is doing its part to support entrepreneurship with the launch of a new annual membership and redesigned website (www.NASE.org), offering a more affordable and comprehensive suite of resources and services.
  • For the 2010 tax year, self-employed business owners can have one more deduction to claim – their health insurance costs.


  • Created to provide a boost to deserving micro-businesses, the NASE’s Business Development Grant Program presented a $20,000 Achievement Award to one member in recognition of his excellent small-business practices and his contribution to local youth, health and community development.
  • The NASE also celebrated over two decades of helping members send their dependents to college through the NASE Scholarship Program. In 2010, the program helped 20 families send their students to college, in addition to the recipient of the substantial NASE Future Entrepreneur Scholarship.
  • A group of NASE members attended a live taping of a town hall-style meeting with President Barack Obama during the summer.
  • The association launched a public awareness campaign, aimed at policymakers, to combat the stereotype that the nation’s smallest businesses do not make serious contributions to the economy. In fact, the self-employed represent three-quarters of the nation’s small businesses and contribute over $1 trillion to the economy.
  • The NASE spoke up on a number of issues, including worker classification definitions, harmful increased reporting requirements passed under the health care law, support for the creation of a standard home office deduction and support for a small business bill with tax incentives and increased funding for small business programs.
  • Amid the conversations by lawmakers on how to craft health care policy and create jobs, the micro-business community received a nod from the White House and Congress when the Small Business Jobs and Credit Act (H.R. 5297) became law in September. The law included a monumentally important deduction for sole proprietors on their health care costs for 2010. The law also included an increase in the deduction for new businesses, from $5,000 to $10,000.
  • The NASE stayed visible in efforts to address a harmful provision set to affect the self-employed in 2012. Passed under the health care law was an increased reporting requirement for businesses involving the IRS Form 1099. The Form 1099 reporting system has historically been utilized for payments made to independent contractors. Since forty percent of NASE members perform their business’s accounting functions on their own, they expect the new law to increase the amount of paperwork they do each year by over one-thousand percent.
  • Following the success of the NASE’s Tax Seminar program in 2008 and 2009, in March the NASE’s National Tax Advisor Keith Hall held fourteen seminars across the country to share micro-business tax strategies and to bring together fellow NASE Members. 


  • Tax.NASE.org is launched, streamlining the tax filing process for micro-business owners with interactive calculators, a Schedule C planning tool and more.
  • Created to provide a boost to deserving micro-businesses, the NASE’s Business Development Grant Program continued to flourish and even presented a $30,000 Achievement Award to one member in recognition of the excellent small-business practices she employed to catapult her start-up venture into a successful business.
  • The NASE also celebrated two decades of helping members send their dependents to college through the NASE Scholarship Program. In 2009, the program helped 18 families send their students to college, in addition to the recipient of the substantial NASE Future Entrepreneur Scholarship.
  • President Barack Obama discussed with the NASE how the Administration’s economic recovery efforts would benefit entrepreneurs, and at a meeting with the President the NASE made sure to mention that micro-businesses are still facing difficulties getting access to credit and financing while being crippled by health costs.
  • A few NASE Members had the opportunity to visit the White House to listen to President Obama discuss health reform and why it is important to small business, and NASE Members from Allentown, Pa., were invited by the Administration to attend the start of the White House To Main Street tour with President Obama at Lehigh Carbon Community College.
  • Members of Congress remain in contact with the NASE for information on helping micro-business. The NASE spoke up on a number of issues, including the likely impact of various health reform proposals on small-business owners, the need for a reduction in the complexity and amount of tax paperwork, and that certain tax incentives should not be allowed to expire.
  • An NASE-supported Home Office Deduction Simplification Act, a bill that would make it easier for home businesses to deduct office expenses by offering a $1,500 standard deduction to eligible taxpayers, was introduced in both the House and the Senate in 2009.
  • The NASE supported the introduction of the Equity for Our Nation’s Self-Employed Act, legislation in the House that would eliminate an inequity in the tax code that inhibits the self-employed from receiving a full deduction for health insurance costs, and the introduction of the Tax Equity for the Self-Employed amendment, legislation that would allow sole proprietors to deduct as a business expense 50 percent of their health premium costs, to the health care bill in the Senate.
  • Following the success of the NASE’s Tax Seminar program in 2007 and 2008, in March the NASE’s National Tax Advisor Keith Hall traveled to seven cities across the country to share micro-business tax strategies and to bring together fellow NASE Members.
  • The NASE worked to bring more benefits to members with the introduction of two new membership packages as well as the unveiling of the new Tax Resource Center, where NASE Members and other small- business owners have access to calculators, planning tools, tax advice from Tax Talk and more to help them with filing tax returns.


  • The House of Representatives introduced legislation, the Home Office Deduction Simplification Act (H.R. 6214), that would make it easier for home businesses to deduct office expenses by offering an optional $1,500 standard deduction to eligible taxpayers, with that amount also indexed for inflation.
  • NASE Member Sheri Novak, owner of online natural toy retailer Hazelnut Kids, received a $30,000 award from the National Association for the Self-Employed in recognition of her excellent small-business practices and contribution to the community.
  • The NASE Business Development Grant program hits the $350,000 mark in money awarded to deserving members to grow their businesses.


  • Keith Hall, NASE national tax advisor, spoke before Congress regarding the unfair hand micro-businesses are dealt in current proposals to fix the nation’s tax gap, estimated at $353 billion.
  • A nationwide survey of over 3,000 micro-business owners found that an overwhelming percentage – 80% – do not offer retirement plans of any type for either owners or employees. The NASE also found that the greatest barrier, reported by 62 percent of respondents, is the cost of administering and contributing to a retirement plan.
  • NASE President Robert Hughes testified before Congress on how small businesses have minimal options to set up a small group health plans.


  • Seeking member input, the NASE forms the Member Advisory Council to direct the association’s response to issues important to micro-business owners.
  • The House of Representatives introduced legislation that would eliminate a discrepancy in the tax code that requires 14 million self-employed individuals to pay an additional 15.3 percent in taxes on the cost of their health insurance premiums.
  • The NASE launched the Business Development Grant Program and in just over 6 months had distributed more than $70,000 to micro-business owners to carry out a specific business need.


  • The Senate introduced a bill to eliminate the payment of self-employment taxes on health insurance premiums, the number one legislative priority of the NASE.
  • The Association of Small Business Development Centers named the NASE a “Champion of Small Business Development” at their annual meeting.
  • Executive Director of the Legislative Office Kristie Darien, testified to the House Small Business Committee on tax relief for micro-businesses. She concentrated her statements on the elimination of the self-employment tax on health insurance.


  • The NASE was invited to two policy speeches by President Bush, and offered testimony to Congress on micro-business access to affordable health coverage.
  • NASE President Robert Hughes represented the association at a White House holiday reception.
  • The women.NASE.org resource center launched, targeting women in business issues and concerns.
  • U.S. Small Business Administration released a study on the growth of entrepreneurship at the NASE Washington, D.C., office.


  • NASE President Robert Hughes authors Schedule C: From A to Z, a step-by-step guide to tax filing for sole proprietors.
  • Spearheaded by the NASE, legislation to eliminate the payment of self-employment tax on health insurance premiums was introduced in the House of Representatives.
  • Ten NASE Members were selected for the first Women’s Advisory Council, directing the association’s response to the increasing number of women entrepreneurs.


  • Robert Hughes, NASE President, testified before the House Small Business Committee regarding micro-business access to affordable health care. He participated in both House and Senate Small Business roundtables regarding access to capital, and a Senate small business committee roundtable on the role of the Small Business Development Centers in promoting regulatory compliance.
  • The NASE began its co-sponsorship of the Women Entrepreneurship in the 21st Century summits across the country.
  • The NASE “Micro-Business Survey” received national media attention as it reports that the self-employed are confident in their ability to overcome an economic downturn.


  • The NASE launched its Legislative Advocacy Center, advocacy.NASE.org, utilizing Internet resources to mobilize members as part of a grassroots campaign to advance the legislative agenda.


  • The NASE Scholarship Program received an “Award of Excellence” from the American Society of Association Executives.
  • The NASE introduced the TaxTalk e-letter, providing expert advice on tax issues affecting the self-employed.


  • The Home Office Tax Deduction was broadened, allowing more small businesses to claim the deduction.
  • Following a diligent campaign by the NASE, the IRS created an independent oversight board that enhances the ability of small businesses to recover attorney fees and halt the accrual of fines and interest penalties in many instances.


  • Congress passed IRS overhaul legislation with small business-friendly provisions backed by the NASE.
  • The NASE met with IRS Commissioner Charles Rossotti and other IRS executives to offer small business views on the pending IRS overhaul. Rossotti’s plan created an IRS operating unit devoted specifically to small business needs.


  • Legislation was passed allowing the costs of a home office to be deducted by businesses that perform essential administrative and management functions in the home office. The NASE was a leader in the fight for the broadened deduction.
  • Congress agreed to phase-in 100 percent deductibility of health insurance for the self-employed, which the NASE supported.


  • Efforts of the NASE were instrumental in passing the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Act of 1996, which mandates major improvements in the way federal agencies treat small businesses. The Act – a small business “regulatory bill of rights” – was hailed as perhaps the most significant small business legislation passed since World War II.
  • The NASE helped persuade Congress to set up IRAs for non-wage-earning spouses of self-employed people.
  • www.NASE.org went live to raise awareness of key issues for micro-businesses.


  • Members were a major voice in formulating a 60-point agenda developed for the Congress and Administration’s consideration during the White House Conference on Small Business.


  • The NASE recruited House Ways and Means Committee representatives to introduce H.R. 3407 to reinstate a home-office tax deduction for home-based small business owners. The association led a coalition of 32 business groups to secure additional support for the bill.


  • The association established a legislative advocacy program with a presence in Washington, D.C.


  • The NASE Scholarship Program was started for dependents of NASE Members.


  • Capitol Hill discussions on health insurance issues utilized the NASE's data on availability and cost of health insurance for small businesses.
  • Membership in the NASE exceeded 100,000.


  • Membership climbed from 10,000 to 50,000 in two years.


  • The NASE was founded to bring collective buying power and clout to small businesses.

Your Voice in D.C.

Are your small business needs drowned out by the giant corporate interests appealing to Congress?  There's strength in numbers, and with the NASE as your champion, your concerns receive their deserved consideration in federal regulations and small business laws.

Partner with NASE Now!

Join today and the NASE's experts, resources, discounts, and influence in D.C. are a click away! Get great information on help starting a business, business plan help, help for small business, and more.

Courtesy of NASE.org