Gov. Inslee proclaims Nov. 17-23 Global Entrepreneurship Week in Washington State
Washington activities reach all 39 counties – more than any other U.S. state during worldwide celebration of startups and entrepreneurship
Governor Jay Inslee proclaimed Nov. 17-23, 2014 Global Entrepreneurship Week (GEW) in Washington. This third annual celebration of entrepreneurship and startups will feature more than 100 local education and networking events in all 39 counties – surpassing the reach of any other state program. More events take place year-round in Washington.
Thousands of budding entrepreneurs are expected to attend GEW 2014 events, according to coordinators at the Washington State Department of Commerce. Activities cover a wide range of topics, from how to create a business plan to finding funding.
“Small businesses are an important engine of our state and the national economy, accounting for over half of our private sector labor force,” said Commerce Director Brian Bonlender. “Our Startup Washington initiatives and programs such as our State Small Business Credit Initiative and State Trade and Export Promotion grants are about fostering an environment for new business opportunities and entrepreneurs to thrive.”
Cultivating “home grown” economic development by supporting localized strengths and entrepreneurship is a key priority of Gov. Inslee’s jobs strategy for rural, underserved communities as well as urban centers. GEW is one opportunity to emphasize Washington state’s year-round, ongoing efforts to drive new business growth from within, Bonlender added.
“As part of our Startup 365 Washington strategy, Global Entrepreneurship Week is intended to re-energize communities large and small in the entrepreneurial spirit,” said Maury Forman, senior manager for rural and small business priorities at Commerce. “Technology allows people to live and work where they want to these days and it is our goal to give entrepreneurs and small business people the tools, resources, education and training they need to be successful. Startup 365 is not just about starting a business; it’s about successful adulthood.”
One of the unique aspects of Washington’s GEW celebration is its focus on youth.
“The Jeff Bezos, Elon Musk, JK Rowling and Cher Wang of tomorrow are in Washington schools right now,” Forman said. “They are at an age when the thought of going into business isn’t foreign to them, but may even be second nature. This early exposure to starting and running a business allows students to stay in the town they grew up in after graduation, creating businesses, products and services that will keep intellectual capital and economic wealth in local communities.”
At least 130 countries take part in Global Entrepreneurship Week, hosting more than 19,000 individual events worldwide.
“I’m proud that our team at Commerce leads the way among our competitor states by working extremely hard to grow a larger, more valuable network of resources and events for entrepreneurs each year,” Bonlender said.
To learn more about GEW and see a complete list of events as well as the governor’s proclamation, visit www.startup.choosewashingtonstate.com.