Today is my last blog post before I sign off from the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) and start a new venture leading BIOforward. I was very fortunate to have the opportunity to join WEDC three and a half years ago. Not only have I worked with talented co-workers who are dedicated to the companies and taxpayers in our state, but I have had the privilege of meeting creative and inspiring entrepreneurs all across Wisconsin. In addition, I have had the chance to partner and collaborate with organizations and individuals who are committed to supporting a critical component to our state’s future economic growth—our entrepreneurs.

I’ve learned a lot during my time at WEDC. In the beginning, I had no economic development experience, but I had lived the life of an entrepreneur and understood how difficult it was to start and grow a company. I had experienced the pain and the joy of launching a company and I wanted to be a part of an organization that understood the importance of our startup community.

Government cannot lead our entrepreneurs, but we can take action that supports them, and we can learn to adapt quickly to their needs as we race ahead in a fast-paced global economy. Entrepreneurs are in a constant motion of change, implementation and collaboration. All of us who support entrepreneurs must take on this same mentality.

It has been very rewarding to see the entrepreneurial energy taking off in many of our cities and regions. We have tried to support that energy and entrepreneurial spirit by developing programs that can seed these early stage ventures, such as Capital Catalyst, Seed Accelerator and SBIR Advance programs.

And now with BIOforward I hope I can bring energy and vision to promote our vitally important biosciences and healthcare sectors. I hope to find ways to collaborate across sectors so that we can demonstrate the strength we have in Wisconsin.

Thank you to WEDC’s marketing team and Nelson Schmidt for promoting Wisconsin’s entrepreneurial spirit and the multitude of success stories we have ongoing in this state.

It has been a great ride these past three and a half years! Thank you all for enriching my life.