Start Here Little Rock partners with Clinton School to launch pilot program on Aug 27
- Start Here Little Rock launches pilot program on August 27 at 10 a.m. at the University of Arkansas Clinton School of Public Service
- The one-day program connects attendees to key entrepreneur and small business support organizations in Little Rock. Attendees will also hear inspiring success stories from local minority and women entrepreneurs.
- The mission of Start Here Little Rock is to engage women and minorities in Little Rock and increase access to entrepreneurial information, resources and training.
Little Rock, Ark., July 26, 2016 – Start Here Little Rock launches program to increase engagement of women and minorities in Little Rock in the entrepreneurial process and to increase access to entrepreneurial information, resources and training.
This program is a collaboration between Start Here Little Rock and the University of Arkansas Clinton School for Public Service. The program will be a one-day workshop held Saturday, August 27th, starting at 10 a.m. It will be held at the University of Arkansas Clinton School of Public Service located at 1200 President Clinton Avenue on the premises of the Clinton Presidential Center in downtown Little Rock.
“Democratizing access to capital for entrepreneurs from every part of our society is vital for success in modern innovation,” said Skip Rutherford, Dean of the Clinton School. “Start Here Little Rock provides a starting point for minority and women entrepreneurs by raising awareness and providing access to the resources and support already available in the thriving startup community right here in Little Rock.”
The program will feature a variety of entrepreneurial and small business support organizations and will focus on educating attendees about the services they provide. Participants will also learn how to connect to and best leverage these resources. During the second half of the program, attendees will hear local success stories from women and minority entrepreneurs across a wide range of industries and backgrounds.
“The Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) at the Department of Commerce reports that minority-owned firms produce at rates equal to non-minority firms,” said Steve Rice, founder of Start Here Little Rock. “Lower wealth levels, as well as more limited access to capital, impact the ability of minority-owned firms to thrive.”
According to the MBDA, wealth levels among whites are 11 to 16 times higher than Hispanic and African American households. “Despite this inequity and the challenges it presents, minority businesses thrive at similar levels and even grow more quickly, in some cases, than non-minority firms,” said Rice.
Start Here, Little Rock seeks to create a measurable increase in connection and engagement between community entrepreneur support organizations and women and minorities in Little Rock.
Resources for entrepreneurs exist in our community,” said Katie Milligan, community organizer for Start Here Little Rock and Director of Small Business and Entrepreneurship at the Delta Regional Authority. “The first step is to raise awareness among women and minority entrepreneurs–or would-be entrepreneurs–about what tools exist and work together to increase engagement by providing access to key resources, education and support. Start Here aims to begin the conversation towards building a more inclusive and accessible ecosystem.”
About Start Here Little Rock
Start Here, Little Rock is a community-based program with a mission to engage women and minorities in Little Rock and increase access to entrepreneurial information, resources and training. This program is presented in collaboration with the University of Arkansas Clinton School for Public Service.