Positive Feedback: The Future of Entrepreneurship in Santa Fe

August 10th, 2022

As summer monsoons collide over The City Different, Creative Santa Fe continues our collaboration with the business accelerator Santa Fe Innovates and UNM Anderson School of Management. Please join us and the Santa Fe Hispanic Chamber of Commerce on August 17 at the Southside Library for our second community input session on how to grow socially responsible entrepreneurship in our local economy.

The event is free and open to all. Entrepreneurs and Southside residents are especially welcome, as are Santa Fe creatives and changemakers who jive with our mission to use creativity and collaboration to promote cross-cultural vibrancy and economic vitality.

“We want to get a dialogue going on the importance of entrepreneurship, the struggles and successes of entrepreneurs, and how we can all collectively help each other and build a business ecosystem that’s accessible and inclusive for everyone,” says David Fresquez, an entrepreneur, founder of Age Friendly Senior Care, LLC, and President of the Santa Fe Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. He believes Santa Fe’s Hispanic entrepreneurial community is “on the cusp of breaking loose,” with a critical mass of businesses, people, and leadership that is concentrated in the Southside corridor. Their strong interest in giving back to the community makes them a natural fit for the responsible entrepreneurship movement, which is the defining focus for UNM Anderson and Santa Fe Innovates, and the reason the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce is partnering with them and with CrSF on the August 17 input session.

For Jon Mertz, co-founder of Santa Fe Innovates, this community input session is a chance to hear new voices and ideas that could advance Santa Fe’s transition towards socially responsible entrepreneurship — a rising movement amongst US businesses and corporations that seeks to balance profits with positive impact on people and the planet. Since its founding in 2020, Santa Fe Innovates has been guiding local entrepreneurs through the process of conceiving and launching successful start-ups in a variety of industries, such as tech and cannabis, provided they “have a social responsibility element embedded in them,” Mertz says.

UNM Anderson provides the entrepreneurs who participate in Santa Fe Innovates’ program with the business education coursework they need to financially succeed, while also training them in responsible business practices. “UNM Anderson is excited to collaborate with organizations like Creative Santa Fe and Santa Fe Innovates,” says Robert DelCampo, who is Rutledge Professor of Management at UNM Anderson School of Management and directs the Corporate and Community Engagement Office. “When we were approached about building this initiative, we jumped at the opportunity to work with like-minded organizations to bring the resources of UNM to Santa Fe.”

    UNM Entrepreneur Series

    UNM Entrepreneur Series

    UNM Entrepreneur Series

    UNM Entrepreneur Series

    UNM Entrepreneur Event

Following this second community input session, CrSF will be applying our superpowers of “convening people and amplifying initiatives that uplift our community,” says CrSF Director Sorakamol Prapasiri, to co-present an educational programming around responsible entrepreneurship with Santa Fe Innovates and UNM Anderson School. BEYOND PROFIT: A Think & Do Series for Courageous Entrepreneurs* will launch September 15 at Form & Concept Gallery, with a conversation between Chip Conley, founder of the Modern Elder Academy (soon to open a campus in Galisteo, NM) and Mitzi Montoya, Dean of UNM Anderson School of Management. They will discuss how entrepreneurs can benefit from both receiving and providing mentorship across generations.

“Creative Santa Fe is stepping into this partnership with UNM Anderson School and Santa Fe Innovates because we share a vision for economic vitality in Santa Fe,” Prapasiri says. “We see Santa Fe as a future hub for social innovation, including responsible entrepreneurship.”

If you also share this vision, please join us next Wednesday as we listen to what the entrepreneurial community in Santa Fe is doing, and what it needs to thrive.

Visit our meetup.com page for more information about the August 17 community input session, which begins at 5:30 pm at the Southside Santa Fe Public Library. Registration is appreciated, but not required.

We thank the City of Santa Fe Community and Economic Development Office for supporting this event, and our collaborators at the Santa Fe Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, UNM Anderson School of Management, and Santa Fe Innovates.

* Registration for the Beyond Profit series will open August 26, and will be announced on our website.