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Through collaborative leadership we supplied a pipeline of $812 million in new capital investment projects to strengthen and diversify the assets in Iowa. But beyond big number private-sector prospects we also work with the progressive small businesses, nonprofits, civic leaders, workforce, education institutions, utilities, transportation, housing, etc to maximize productivity and long-term prosperity in our evolving economic landscape.

Entrepreneurship Update: Rural Entrepreneurs Speak Candidly

Last night leaders from Tama County’s business, education, nonprofit and government sectors came together to discuss strategies for taking Tama County’s ability to cultivate locally originating innovation and leadership to the next level through entrepreneurship. A discussion driven by seasoned entrepreneurs touched on local resources they value, what they learned the hard way, barriers, and opportunities for supporting emerging entrepreneurs. In a post meeting debriefing one of the leaders commented that he thought the meeting discussion was driven by two concepts. A need for increased local entrepreneurial ‘perspective’ and ‘exposure’.

Perspective would relate to the meaningful translation of the thousands of existing entrepreneurial assets that form the foundation of our resource network which can be strengthened and combined increasingly better for Tama County’s specific localized needs. And, exposure would relate to increasing the contact that these entrepreneurship assets have on our local culture as a philosophy for a way of living, thinking and solving problems as oppose to waiting for others to take on innovation leadership roles.

The group scheduled a follow-up meeting within two weeks to build on the momentum of the meeting. Special effort will be made to invite additional seasoned entrepreneurs from a variety of industry sectors, education leaders, and emerging entrepreneurs to build a robust trust of leaders looking at solutions from a multiple points of view.

Focus will be on tangible action steps to increase the quantity and quality of emerging local commercial and social entrepreneurs/leaders to facilitate a healthy locally driven economy.
Wed. Sept 1, 2010, 6:30 p.m.
Reinig Center
1007 Prospect Drive
Toledo, Iowa
Free. Public very welcome.

Pictured: (clockwise): Eric Joyce (Lincoln Savings Bank), Dwyane Luze (Dysart Development Corp and Tama County Economic Development), Don Lyons (Mayor of Dysart and Tama County Economic Development), Rick Foster (Gladbrook Tire), Jacque Goodman (Iowa Valley Community College District), Lyle Niemeyer (SCORE), Roy Wiggs (MSRW, LLC).
Out of view: Richard Arp (North Tama School Board), Dale Cyphert (University of Northern Iowa School of Business), Carolyn Dolezal (Tama-Toledo Chamber of Commerce), Jolene Holden (Traer Community Leader), Pete Holden (Mayor of Traer and American Alternative Entery, Inc.), Jerimi Kopsa (State Bank of Toledo), Ronelle Langley (University of Northern Iowa School of Business), Yvonne Mallory (Iowa Valley Community College District), Sandy MacAntire (Kissing Emu Farms), Clete Rowan (Rowan Equipment and Fabrication), Cindy Schulte (Iowa Valley Community College District), Byron Witt (Appraisal and Real Estate Services), Lindi Roelofse (Tama County Economic Development).



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