Almost two weeks ago, the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation gave vying conference-goers an opportunity to enter the Big Omaha “Express Your Pledge” competition for a chance to win a ticket to Big Omaha. With more than 60 entrepreneurs’ submissions to choose from, Baton Rouge entrepreneur Wendy Overton stood out among the rest and was selected as the challenge winner.
Because of her action-oriented attitude and passion to grow entrepreneurship in Baton Rogue, especially in the Startup Weekend community, Overton’s pledge expressed the enthusiasm for being a business owner, but also the support for entrepreneurship as a cause that qualified her for the big ticket.
Here is Overton’s competition submission:
I am an entrepreneur. Baton Rouge is my startup. I’m a catalyst and a connector. I take responsibility for my own destiny and am working to help others to do the same. Last fall I set forth to bring Startup Weekend to Baton Rouge and in doing so I began to realize a path to ignite entrepreneurism in Louisiana’s capital, and I am boldly embarking on that path by creating a series of grassroots events, organizations and activities designed to build an innovative culture.
It inspires me to think my work has both changed and will change lives and the economy of this region. I will fulfill the Entrepreneur’s Pledge by taking action to bring bold social ideas to reality. My destiny is the same as any true-blooded entrepreneur – to disrupt entropy, be the first to market, change the game, embrace being different than the masses, inspire others … and find fulfillment. The more “disruptive” the activities and events I initiate, the greater the likelihood I, and others who join me, can impact and inspire the capitol region. I will reach out to fellow entrepreneurs, actively engaging them to support inspiring and action-oriented events and activities. I will make connections to strengthen the fabric of our entrepreneurial community and let the magic of purpose-driven human interaction create new momentum. I will build a stronger America by no longer sitting idly by. Rather, I will step forward with boldness. It is often a perilous venture to stand up and stand out, but in surveying the desperate needs of this state, it is a risk well worth taking. As for me taking the risk – taking action is the first reward. I am proud to be a social entrepreneur.
Our congratulations go out to Wendy and we wish her safe travels as she travels cross-country to join us for Big Omaha next week. Thank you to all those who entered the challenge and again, many thanks go to the Kauffman Foundation for its support of Big Omaha and making this competition possible.