Episode 2

Published on:

21st Mar 2023

CHIPS Act & Innovation Centers with Wendy Lea

In this episode, host David Ponraj speaks with Wendy Lea, CEO of Energize Colorado and Advisory Council Member of National Advisory Council on Innovation and Entrepreneurship (NACIE). Lea discusses the roots of Energize Colorado & ecosystem building, and how the main mission is to close the gaps that are significant for underserved entrepreneurs. Lea also mentions NACIE, and the development of the Regional Innovation Hubs, which allow for technological advancement and growth of tech businesses. Included, Lea speaks to the importance of global service providers, specifically McKinsey in Ohio, who teed up and researched the opportunity to launch Cintrifuse, a public private partnership.

The National Advisory Council on Innovation and Entrepreneurship (NACIE) is in the Department of Commerce, and it helps with supporting entrepreneurs who are advocating for innovative technologies. Regional Innovation Hubs include an economic development initiative to increase technology and innovation related change. Added, Regional Innovation Hubs include a ten billion dollar program in which ten regional hubs will be launched over time. This is one program in CHIPS & Science. The goal for a region is a billion dollars for five years. This would be catalytic capital to allow for technological advancement and talent patterns, which can center around diversity and inclusivity.

Although the deadline has passed, the EDA has issued an RFI (Tech Hubs Request for Information) requesting feedback from the public about the program design, structure, and evaluation of the Tech Hubs program, and the EDA welcomes ideas that will help encourage growth of the Tech Hubs. For further information, and to check for similar opportunities in the future, visit www.eda.gov.

For more information on Energize Colorado, visit https://energizecolorado.com/.

To learn more about NACIE and the Regional Innovation Hub, check out https://www.eda.gov/strategic-initiatives/national-advisory-council-on-innovation-and-entrepreneurship and https://www.eda.gov/funding/programs/regional-technology-and-innovation-hubs.

For more context on McKinsey, take a look at this article https://www.mckinsey.com/industries/public-and-social-sector/our-insights/building-innovation-ecosystems-accelerating-tech-hub-growth.

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About the Podcast

Breaking Down Barriers
A Podcast About Entrepreneurship-Led Economic Development
This podcast explores the opportunity to build wealth in local, regional, and national economies through entrepreneurship-led economic development. Episodes feature changemakers with innovative approaches to empowering people to start businesses that create wealth for their families and improve outcomes for their communities. Conversations highlight work being done in communities across the US to break down barriers to entrepreneurial opportunity in underserved and underrepresented communities. In this series, we share authentic stories about the impact that entrepreneurship-led economic development has on the local economy and connect a global network of passionate economic developers. Find out more at economicimpactcatalyst.com/impact