Workshop introduces Young Entrepreneurs Collective

A kickoff involving entrepreneurs, home-based ventures and beginning and established businesses unveiled a new community workspace at the Old Post Office that will foster growth among the business professional in Churchill County.

Both Mayor Ken Tedford and Gov. Brian Sandoval spoke at the event last week to off their insight into entrepreneurship.

The program’s goal is to introduce the Young Entrepreneurs Collective, a group bringing business owners and entrepreneurs together to collaborate on projects benefiting the community and entire entrepreneurial ecosystem.

“Small businesses and entrepreneurs continue to be the core strength of our economy,” said Andrea Schell, Fallon YEC co-founder. “The city of Fallon recognizes that our community needs this resource and has helped create an avenue for entrepreneurial success.”

Tedford, whose family has run a successful business in Fallon for generations, said the co-working space area would allow new and existing businesses to step outside the office and brainstorm their business knowledge to one another.

“Upstairs of the old Post Office has been transformed to accommodate a professional office with a computer, printer, scanner, television and more,” Tedford said. “The co-working space is for continued business education.”

Tedford said he was grateful to Carol Lloyd, Churchill County Library director, who donated resources to the coalition space.

“Soon, it will be a library of entrepreneurial notebooks and resources in management, business planning, granting and marketing,” Tedford said.

In the future, he said Western Nevada College Fallon will implement classes on entreprenurialship.

“We’ll arm the local business leaders with all the tools of success,” Tedford added.

Sandoval said he was impressed with what the city has accomplished.

“The city of Fallon and the mayor have a vision to bring together businesses to collaborate in the community,” Sandoval said.

The governor gave a short history lesson on the Old Post Office and how it included offices for the U.S. Department of Agriculture extension Internal Revenue Service. He said the building was the epitome of a strong sense of community.

Sandoval gave an example of entrepreneurship that involved his siblings and him. They became involved with a 4-H program and raised sheep. Through hard work, Sandoval said eventually he was able to save enough money to buy his first car, accompany his mother on a plane trip to Washington D.C., by purchasing his ticket and use money for his tuition at the University of Nevada, Reno.

The experience broadened his horizon, and he encouraged those in attendance to broaden their horizons and live out their dreams.

“This new Nevada is not for Carson City, Las Vegas or Henderson. It’s for all of us,” Sandoval said, adding that ladders are created for opportunities.

Other presentations came from the Nevada Small Business Development Center, Startup Week, Battle Born Venture Fund, Bristlecone Holdings and a panel of entrepreneurs.

Tedford said the city is joining together in a collaboration to benefit the community, local business owners and the entire entrepreneurial ecosystem. By providing an affordable, collaborative office space, the city aims to foster the growth of the local entrepreneurial community.

Rachel Dahl, executive director of the Churchill Economic Development Authority, said she is supportive of the new venture because it will help both the city and county expand their business base. Although she has her own work area at the CEDA office, Dahl said she wanted to become part of the new project and paid her annual dues so she can offer her expertise to entrepreneurs and business owners.

Abbi Holtom Whitaker, a Churchill County and UNR graduate, owns her own public relations firm in Reno, the Abbi Agency. She is excited to be a part of Fallon’s new venture.

“It is really important for entrepreneurs and business owners to talk to each other,” she said. “They will gather a lot of information.”

Whitaker said the working space will be informal and also offer peer interaction, which she said is important, especially for the people who operate a business from their homes.

Additionally, Whitaker said he also praised the library for its donation because the material will encourage young entrepreneurship.

“This will get people excited,” she added.


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