When SCN Comes to Town, Ecosystems Are Made Stronger

May 31, 2022 | By

Deryle Daniels

This story is adapted from the Forward Cities monthly e-newsletter. Subscribe for the latest news and updates from cities across the country.


May 2022
When SCN Comes to Town, Ecosystems
Are Made Stronger
Three letters describe the Startup Champions Network Spring 2022 Summit: WOW! With ecosystem leaders from across the United States descending on the Triangle region of North Carolina, we could not have been any more excited to host everyone and show off what makes this part of the country so amazing.

From thought-provoking panel discussions, breakout sessions that challenged us to expand our perspectives, and tours of the community that reminded us of how important it is to continue in our fight for equity, there is not one ecosystem builder who did not leave with far more tools and connections than they came with.

Many thanks to supporting hosts Social Venturers and First Flight Venture Center and to Duke Innovation & Entrepreneurship, the City of Raleigh, and NC IDEA for serving as local sponsors, as well as our speakers, volunteers, and every single person who chose to make this summit a priority. We cannot wait to do it again in Fort Worth in the fall.

Touchdown in Indy

Last month in Indianapolis, we were reminded that there is nothing like being in close proximity to the people who are doing this work tirelessly. We were excited to facilitate a capacity building session with nearly twenty leaders in Indy and it felt awesome.

From connecting on what ways they can work together to explaining their areas of genius and opportunities, being in the room with them and hearing their stories was nothing short of inspiring. We cannot wait to get back and keep diving into this critical and timely work.

Over the next few months, we will be telling stories of our partner organizations' success and collaborations so make sure you're following the hashtag #E3Indy across all of our social media platforms

"We want to be the connective tissue for entrepreneurs to help them build the social capital that's very much necessary in any industry of business."

 – T.J. Wright, Executive Director of The Speak Easy and CEO at Whelhaus Co.

Join the EBLP Collaborative Process

The Ecosystem Building Leadership Project (EBLP) is launching and you are invited to be a key contributor to its success. The aim is to establish a national entity that provides shared leadership and sustainable efforts to advance the field of entrepreneurial ecosystem building, across many sectors, in the United States.

The first co-design phase of the EBLP is being hosted by InBIA, on behalf of the field, and being guided by a coalition of 30+ people who represent many organizations and sectors. Over the next nine months, we’re seeking input and participation in this collaborative design process to imagine the ideal future entity, network, alliance, or coalition.

The EBLP process is enabling us all to openly and collaboratively design, develop, and validate the shared infrastructure and shared leadership needed to inspire more wide-spread adoption of ecosystem building. The results will provide entrepreneurs everywhere with improved opportunities to succeed – ultimately helping more communities thrive for many generations.

Forward Cities' President & CEO, Fay Horwitt, has been designated to lead the project's DEI Working Group, lending Forward Cities' expertise to help insure that, as the field of ecosystem building matures, that it is prioritizing access, belonging, inclusion, diversity and equity.

You’re invited to participate in one of the following ways:

  • Visit this site to learn more and get involved with the project.

  • Share your experiences and voice by taking this survey. We’ll use your input to identify what is collectively needed to enable the success of the project.

  • Follow project progress by joining our online community.



We are committed to ensuring equity for every entrepreneur, in every community. Please consider a gift to support our work.
Thank you!