word on the street| may 2018
National Small Business Week
Each year, the Small Business Administration dedicates one week to recognizing the important contributions of entrepreneurs and small business owners across the country. This year, from April 29th to May 5th, Next Street will join along by highlighting four of the over 4,000 great small businesses we work with annually through our brick-and-mortar Business Solutions Centers and other small business programs. Each business owner will share what it means to be an entrepreneur, how their business impacts their community, and more.
Meet the four entrepreneurs we will be highlighting, and follow along here to learn more about them:
Last month, Next Street Partner Charisse Conanan Johnson moderated a panel at the On Board Conference hosted by the Rustandy Center for Social Sector Innovation in Chicago. The conference works to ensure that “nonprofit leaders and their boards are equipped with the knowledge and connections to do their best work.” The panel was titled Untangling the Purse Strings: How Board Governance Impacts Funder Decisions. The panelists represented a range of philanthropic and financial organizations that offer funding opportunities to nonprofit organizations.
Click here to learn more about the event and the key themes from the panel discussion.
new on the street
CEI’s 40th Anniversary Celebration
On April 25th, Next Street attended the 40th Anniversary Celebration of Coastal Enterprises, Inc. Since 1977, CEI has worked to grow jobs, environmentally sustainable enterprises, and shared prosperity in Maine. The event celebrated CEI’s efforts, and highlighted some of the businesses and community members that have received financing and advisory services from CEI over the years, including the Center for Maine Contemporary Art, Coast of Maine, and Tilson. CEI Founder and recently retired CEO Ron Phillips was also honored, and a scholarship was announced in his name, celebrating his nearly four decades of impact on Maine and in rural communities across the country.
In case you missed it, read our interview with CEI President Betsy Biemann here.
Communities Thrive Challenge
The Rockefeller Foundation and the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative have partnered to launch the Communities Thrive Challenge, a $10-million funding opportunity open to organizations in the United States that are working to expand economic opportunity for low-income and financially insecure people and communities. Up to 10 grantees will receive a $1 million grant, best-in-class technical assistance, and an opportunity to share their story on a national stage. Given Next Street’s commitment to similar goals of economic opportunity and community revitalization, Next Street’s CEO Marina Linhart is proud to be serving on the Expert Review Panel for the Challenge.
heard on the street
- Five Ways Cities Can Use Their Purchasing Power to Support Minority-Owned Businesses: Highlights from a convening of this year’s Living Cities City Accelerator participants, including a presentation by Next Street’s Jonathan Salzman on how “public, nonprofit and corporate anchor partnerships can take equitable procurement strategies to scale.”
- Measuring Inclusion in America’s Cities: To better understand what makes cities inclusive, Urban Institute collected data on 274 cities and ranked them on economic, racial, and overall inclusion across four decades. The report includes an interactive dashboard where you can explore the inclusiveness of your own city.
- Helping Entrepreneurs Write Their Own Success Stories: Mission-based lenders Accion and Opportunity Fund share the findings of their study on small business borrowers. The report “reinforces the urgency to bring mission-based lending to scale, thereby providing this critical service to all entrepreneurs who stand to benefit.”
- Spotlight on Small Biz: MEDA’s ‘patient capital’ strategy boosts minority entrepreneurs: MEDA is now offering patient, “equity-like” capital, to combat the fact that debt and debt payments are often what slows the growth of high-potential businesses.
careers at next street
Where teamwork and entrepreneursip meet
At Next Street we bring strategic and financial expertise to small businesses and nonprofits, and connect the dots across their broader ecosystem to drive sustainable and equitable development solutions in communities across the US. We are a certified B Corporation with offices in Boston, New York City, and Chicago.