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On May 24 experts from government, military and industry came together for Think Gov 2018: Technology for a smarter government. Think Gov was a call for government leaders to learn what’s possible, make it relevant in your world, and find the right partner to make it happen.

Even if you weren’t able to join us at the program, you can still explore the post-event resource page and watch videos of the full event. You can view a mainstage interview with MG William Hix (Army Modernization Command Task Force) and Francis Rose (Government Matters), a breakout session about Connected Government with experts from Department of State, the Veterans Health Administration, and IBM, a conversation about Modernizing for the Mission with leaders from SBA, GSA, Commerce, and IBM, and many more discussions about the latest trends in AI, blockchain, cloud, data, and security.

By Debbie Gregory.

WWII Army Veteran Bob Evans, whose small truck stop restaurant in Ohio grew into a national chain and a line of pork sausage products that bear his name, created a corporate culture that recognizes and appreciates military service. To that end, one of the largest veteran-only business grants in the country is provided by the Bob Evans Farms “Heroes to CEOs” business grant.

As a way of giving back to the men and women who keep America safe, the grant program was born out of a need to provide funding and assistance to veteran entrepreneurs.

“Our company has a passion for helping those who serve,” said Mike Townsley, CEO and President of Bob Evans Farms. “Serving in the military and beginning a new-business venture can feel worlds apart for many vets.”

Judging criteria for the grant includes categories such as “Success,” “Reason” and “Opportunity.”

Those who have served make excellent entrepreneurs because of the skills and traits garnered through their military service. In fact, according to the Small Business Administration, more than 2.5 million small businesses in the U.S. are veteran owned.

Last year, the grant recipients were:

Army veteran Carson Goodale,  co-founder of Fanfood, an app that gives you the power to order concessions directly to your seat at sporting events.

Air Force veteran Charlynda Scales, who founded Mutt’s Sauce, an all-purpose, tomato-based specialty sauce. The condiment recipe was passed down by and is named for her grandfather, Charlie “Mutt” Ferrell.

Army veteran Jerry Martin, who founded Vet Veggies, which provides fresh, pesticide and chemical free vegetables grown locally by military veterans in a sustainable environment.

The deadline for the 2018 program is June 27th, and three $25,000 business grants will be awarded to veterans or active-duty members who either have their own business or an entrepreneurial business idea. Last year’s awardees will also serve as judges for this year’s grant competition.

In addition to the grant money, the three recipients will also receive a three-day trip for two to New York City, as well as a half-day mentoring session with Daymond John, Co-Star of ABC’s Shark Tank.

Learn more about this year’s “Heroes to CEOs” contest or submit an application at https://www.ourfarmsalutes.com.

By Debbie Gregory.

The Institute for Veterans and Military Families is proud to host the sold-out Veteran EDGE Conference, which will take place February 16-18, 2018 in Austin, TX.

Registration, which is now closed, was open to veteran and military spouse business owners by invitation only. To be considered, attendees were required to meet one of the following criteria:

 

  • Entrepreneurship Bootcamp for Veterans (EBV) graduates
  • Entrepreneurship Bootcamp for Veterans’ Families (EBV-F) graduates
  • Veteran Women Igniting the Spirit of Entrepreneurship (V-WISE) graduates
  • Coalition for Veteran Owned Business (CVOB) members
  • Vet50 honorees
  • VetSmallBiz Growth Challenge 2.0 finalists

 

Attendees of the three-day educational event will have access to breakout sessions, business experts, and networking opportunities. They will also learn how to grow their businesses by finding mentors, connecting with networks, and accessing capital.

Additionally, the top 50 Fastest-Growing Veteran-Owned Businesses in the country will be honored during the Vet50 Awards Ceremony.

Stakeholders, IVMF program graduates, and veteran and military spouse-owned businesses from around the country will be gathering at the conference to network and learn about the latest opportunities, best practices, and resources available to their growing companies.

 

Events are scheduled nationwide as part of the U.S. Small Business Administration’s annual National Veterans Small Business Week, Oct. 30-Nov. 3. The week aims to raise awareness of veteran business ownership and connect business owners to entrepreneurship resources administered through SBA’s Office of Veterans Business Development. For more information, including a list of events nationwide, visit the U.S. Small Business Administration website.

 

The University of West Florida’s Military & Veterans Resource Center, in Partnership

with Veterans Florida, is conducting no-cost Entrepreneurial Workshops for Honorably

Discharged Veterans — Workshops that can lead to participating in a Business Plan

Competition where the three top Winners share $40,000 in Cash and In-Kind Services.

If you are interested in launching a Startup or growing your existing business, the next

Workshop is Saturday, October 28, from 9 a.m. until Noon at the Pensacola UWF Conference

Center.  Breakfast and snacks will be served, and participants have the opportunity to win Door Prizes as well.

The Topic is “Veterans – Don’t Be a Bean Counter — Learn the Secrets of Painless Accounting!”

For MORE INFORMATION please see:

https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/veterans-dont-bean-counter-learn-secrets-painless-robert-l-foster/

For REGISTRATION AND MORE INFORMATION please see:

http://www.veteransflorida.org/veterans/veterans-florida-entrepreneurship-program/

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