Mayors Joe Reardon (left) and Sly James stopped by Startup Weekend Kansas City on the second day to speak to the more than 100 participants. Photo by Danny Schreiber.
Following the Kansas City mayors’ remarks at Startup Weekend Kansas City on September 12, the two took time for an interview with us about what brought them out to event and, as Kansas City, Mo. Mayor Sly James discussed in his talk, what it means to be “governmental entrepreneurs.”
“When a business moves to a city, we’re excited about it,” said Joe Reardon the Mayor/CEO of the Unified Government of Wyandotte County and Kansas City, Kan., “it kind of shows that that business likes what it sees in the city, but equally important is, you know, growing business in the city … coming to, you know, an event like this really speaks to entrepreneurs.”
James spoke about their entrepreneurial approach: “A city is like a company … if we want to grow we have to recognize that the only product that we have to sell is our city.”
James said that he and Reardon discovered that, in marketing Kansas City, it would be easier to work together rather than separately.
“Part of the way that our cities are going to succeed,” Reardon said, “is when our region starts to succeed. And that’s going to happen by us, you know, saying ‘We’re going to talk about this and work in a different way than ever before.’ “
As we’ve reported before, a marquee sign of the two mayors cooperating is seen through Google Fiber’s pending rollout in both cities and the resulting Bi-State Innovation Team the two announced in August.
For our full interview with James and Reardon, check out the video below.
For video of the Mayors’ remarks at Startup Weekend, see our post: “Kansas City mayors speak at Startup Weekend KC“.