Will an entrepreneur make a difference in Washington? I say Yes! Here’s how I plan to continue creating real jobs in Upstate NY by combining proven methods with the power of Congress.
For 10 years traveling back and forth between Upstate New York and Silicon Valley to run my company I kept thinking about all the assets we have in Upstate, including a lot of really smart people. People who have moved elsewhere to start successful companies, some of which have turned into national brands like airbnb, Android and priceline.com. If only these founders with roots to Utica College, Cornell University and Albany had stayed here. We would have so many more job opportunities for our kids, and we could keep our families together. But what as one person could I do to change this dynamic?
Again, we have the assets. We have smart people, a great educational system and a high quality of life. We are in close proximity to the capital markets in NYC. And there’s more than $12 billion a year in research being done, both academically and in commercial companies. These are all the assets needed to power lots of new companies in new industries, yet on the scale of venture capital, a key metric for where tomorrow’s jobs are going to be located, we’re failing to create high-paying jobs in Upstate.
Then the lightbulb went on. The difference between communities like Silicon Valley, Boston and Austin, TX is the culture surrounding the entrepreneur community. These thriving ecosystems are anchored on successful founders paying it forward and helping first time entrepreneurs succeed on their journeys.
So when I stopped commuting in 2010 I started a nonprofit called Upstate Venture Connect. UVC’s mission is to connect entrepreneurs across Upstate New York by partnering with ecosystem leaders, creating angel capital funds and building programs that assist entrepreneurial college students, researchers and technologists.
Today I’m proud to say UVC has helped launch six angel funds with over 250 members who have invested more than $20 million in 80 companies. And according to The Multiplier Effect of Innovation Jobs, for each job created in an innovation industry, five more are created in the community. That’s a start, but much more needs to be done.
I plan on continuing down this path, which has already produced results and created real jobs for our region. Using the power of Congress, I will bring together the right people to have the right conversations about jobs, and identify even more ways for collaborating across institutional and geographic boundaries to leverage common assets in helping grow new industry jobs.
Join me in this movement. Together let’s foster an environment that leverages private sector investment and faster growth by creating new companies and jobs in innovation industries.
NEXT -> Martin Babinec JOBS Effect Podcast – Politicians Say They Create Jobs
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