November 23, 2017

Baker Presents at VBIA Summit

Brian Baker, Executive Director for Economic Development, presented on “Lessons Learned in Business Incubation” at the Virginia Business Incubation Association Summit, Beyond the Silicon Dominion, The Future of Virginia Entrepreneurship. Themes from the presentation included Virtual Enterprise, Global Decoupling, and the Importance of the Maker Movement on the Future of Innovation.

Baker Speaks at Northern Neck Quarterly Meeting

Brian Baker, Executive Director for Economic Development, spoke in Reedville, Va., on the topic of entrepreneurship at the quarterly meeting of the Northern Neck Planning District Commission, Chesapeake Bay Region Partnership and the Northern Neck Tourism Commission. The UMW Center for Economic Development will launch a new entrepreneur program this fall. It will address ideation, commercialization, business modeling, business planning and pitch preparation. The three-month program is designed to nurture entrepreneurs in the facets of business formation. The program will have three tracks to support pre-college, college and post-college entrepreneurs.

Center for Economic Development Releases 2016 Business Guide

The University of Mary Washington Center for Economic Development Business Reference Guide was first compiled in 2006 as a business intelligence tool for small companies in Virginia. Since inception it has more than doubled in size and has become a staple for business clients and professionals both locally and statewide. The Guide systematizes internet resources in a hierarchical taxonomy for quick access. Users will find three new business categories in the 2016 edition that include resources for veterans, rural communities and international engagement business themes.

The Business Reference Guide is a living document that is updated annually and provides representatives from business, education and government with quick access to information. Users are invited to submit new resources and categories that support the health and vitality of Virginia businesses.

The University of Mary Washington Center for Economic Development collaborates with business, government, education, and private parties to promote personal, professional and economic growth by advancing knowledge through entrepreneurship, small business development, innovation and competitiveness, research and analysis, and outreach and engagement.

http://economicdevelopment.umw.edu/files/2016/07/2016-Business-Reference-Guide.pdf

 

Spring Newsletter from the Center for Economic Development

The spring newsletter from the UMW Center for Economic Development is available. Enjoy updates on state, regional, and local partnerships, people, and interesting projects.

https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B18sBULPYrqdZVU1aW5vOWRRYmc/view?pref=2&pli=1

Baker Elected to Fredericksburg Regional Chamber Board

Brian Baker, Executive Director for Economic Development, was elected to the Fredericksburg Regional Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors for a three-year term that began on January 1, 2016.  He has been an active member at the Chamber since 2002.  During that time he has served roles on the Strategic Planning Committee, facilitated Board strategic planning, Finance Committee, the strategic visioning committee, the small business planning committee, the  Leadership Fredericksburg Advisory Board, Mentor Cabinet Chair, and served as a Leadership Fredericksburg mentor since 2008 .  In 2011 he was recognized as an honorary fellow of Leadership Fredericksburg.

Baker Presents at Conference

Brian Baker, executive director for the UMW Center for Economic Development, presented at the Virginia Business Incubation Association Conference this month.  His presentation on “The Other Accelerator” discussed how existing businesses can be incubated through a virtual process to get export trade ready. A notable feature of the event was the CEO+ Program, a partnership between the Rappahannock Economic Development Corporation and the UMW-CED, which will be used as the first stage to accelerating the capability of regional small companies to do business in global markets.

The conference was held in Charlottesville and convened economic development and business development stakeholders.  The Virginia Business Incubation Association is a statewide organization to advance business incubation across the Commonwealth.

 

REDCO Partnering with UMW for Business Program

The UMW Center for Economic Development is partnering with the Rappahannock Economic Development Corporation (REDCO) to provide the CEO+ Program for REDCO 504 loan recipients. The CEO+ Program is a collection of training, business intelligence and financial counseling designed to strengthen the capabilities of small business owners. 504 loan recipients will have access to specialized management training, industry reports, benchmark studies, and financial management assistance. A pilot of the program will begin in October with 10 clients.

Brian Baker, executive director for Economic Development at UMW, stated: “This is a scaled solution with high value data and service that can be deployed quickly to business owners who need to make critical management decisions.” A full launch of the program is planned for January 2016.

REDCO is a licensed non-profit, Certified Development Company that offers long-term fixed-rate financing for small business in Virginia through the SBA 504 Loan Program. The University of Mary Washington Center for Economic Development collaborates with business, government, education and private parties to promote personal, professional and economic growth by advancing knowledge through entrepreneurship, small business development, innovation and competitiveness, research and analysis, and outreach and engagement. UMW programs that will support the partnership include the Small Business Development Center, the EagleWorks Business Incubation Center, and the Office of Regional Initiatives. You can find more information about the UMW Center for Economic Development at www.economicdevelopment.umw.edu/ and REDCO-504 at www.redco504.org .

Baker Conducts Association Strategic Planning

UMW Executive Director of Economic Development Brian Baker conducted strategic planning with Board Members of the Virginia Business Incubation Association.  Baker is a practitioner of the actionable balanced scorecard approach to strategic planning.  The session was hosted at the Waynesboro Office of Economic Development.  The Virginia Business Incubation Association is an education and networking association for professionals who support entrepreneurship, small business development, and the advancement of incubation throughout the Commonwealth.

EagleWorks Gives Small Business Opportunity to Shine

The University of Mary Washington’s Center for Economic Development is taking steps to help small businesses in Fredericksburg succeed. Its small-business incubation program, EagleWorks, took its first client in 2014. Koji Flowers, owner of online marketing company Big Cloud Media, came to EagleWorks after moving from Texas. In the nine months Flowers has worked at EagleWorks, Big Cloud Media has tripled sales and doubled the average scope of project services. In addition, the company has clients in Mexico, Canada, India and Israel. EagleWorks is a collaborative entrepreneur-centered program through the Center for Economic Development that focuses on small businesses to promote their growth and sustainability. Currently, EagleWorks has 13 partners that support clients in the program, including the U.S. Small Business Administration and Cardinal Bank. EagleWorks provides services for small business owners, including office space, a conference room for client use, and business training programs. Flowers credits EagleWorks as a large proponent to Big Cloud Media’s success. Flowers, who had operated Big Cloud Media from his home for several years before coming to EagleWorks, was looking for a place where he could separate work from home. EagleWorks, in addition to providing an area solely for business, also gives Flowers a venue where he can meet with potential clients. The Executive Director of Economic Development Brian Baker and others in the department have been especially valuable to Flowers. They helped Flowers create Limited Liability Company status for his business. In addition, they helped improve his business in ways Flowers had never considered. “It’s been a wonderful program for me,” Flowers said.

Baker Selected to be Business Mentor

Brian Baker, executive director for Economic Development at the University of Mary Washington, was invited by the William James Foundation to be a business mentor for companies in the Sustainable Business Plan Competition. This is Baker’s third year as a judge. As a mentor, he will work closely with company management to advance their value proposition.

The William James Foundation, founded by Chuck Dell in 2002, is dedicated to the principle that “people can be of service to their communities through their work.” Dell attributed his inspiration to the teachings of William James, a noted American philosopher. Since 2002, the foundation has provided more than $3 million in direct funding and countless value in in-kind benefits to for-profit social enterprises.