President & CEO, Florida Venture Forum
Vice President, Florida Venture Forum
The Florida Venture Forum is a statewide network that successfully prepares, coaches and connects entrepreneurs and growing companies with equity investors throughout Florida and beyond, via events, conferences and other networking platforms and activities.
Since its founding in 1984, the Forum has become an increasingly important contributor to Florida’s economy. To date, Forum companies have raised approximately $3 Billion dollars in capital funding after presenting at a Forum event. The Forum’s mission is critical in support of Florida’s economic development strategy of creating an innovation driven economy for the generation of high-wage, high-skilled job growth in the 21st Century.
The Forum’s role is also critical to Florida’s economic development drive for its unique ability to cross major metropolitan borders in a large geographically diverse state. Most organizations connecting entrepreneurs, early-stage companies and investors are city/ region focused, while the Forum is statewide, allowing for greater connectivity across Florida. The Forum also plays a critical role in attracting investors from other states. This is critically important to Florida companies as out-of-state investors offer unique strategic connectivity and growth opportunities, and it is important to the State’s economic vitality as outside sources of capital have a much more pronounced effect and spending multiplier on the economy.
For more than 30 years, the Forum has been creating much-needed business “collisions” among entrepreneurs, early/growth-stage companies, infrastructure support organizations such as higher education institutions, and venture capital firms. These collisions support greater linkages across the state, and between Florida and other states, accelerating and fostering the creation of a statewide innovation and knowledge-based economy for 21st Century growth.
Simply stated, the Florida Venture Forum’s mission is to connect Florida entrepreneurs and capital sources to foster a thriving innovation economy.