City of Mesa to host Global Entrepreneurship Week Conference - "Let's Talk Inclusion"

October 17, 2018 at 11:16 am

On Wednesday, Nov. 14, the City of Mesa will host an event in honor of Global Entrepreneurship Week (GEW) at the Mesa Arts Center from 8:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. The conference will focus on why inclusion matters and strategies to increase inclusion to support the growth of the local entrepreneurial community.

GEW is a celebration of the innovators and job creators who launch startups that bring ideas to life, drive economic growth and expand human welfare. During one week each November, GEW inspires people everywhere through local, national and global activities designed to help them explore their potential as self-starters and innovators.

"Entrepreneurship drives innovation and improves cities by bringing new jobs and residents," Mayor John Giles said. "An inclusive entrepreneurial environment brings a community together and allows all of us to grow. Race, gender, age or socioeconomic status should never stand in the way of anyone starting a business."

GEW Inclusion will highlight the work startup champions are doing around the world to minimize barriers and obstacles for entrepreneurs by maximizing inclusion. Activities, workshops, and speaker series held around the world will explore the obstacles entrepreneurs from underserved populations may face, and discover solutions through access to success stories, training, capital and mentorship.

The Mesa event will feature an interactive workshop, lunch and networking, panel discussion and keynote speaker Raveen Arora, CEO and founder of Think Human Initiative.

The mission of Think Human is to humanize communications in the workplace, social settings and relationships across the globe. The organization focuses on "treating one another as we want to be treated" by applying four principles: people before process, purpose before profit, culture before strategy and stakeholders before shareholders.

The event will also include a panel that will discuss "Modeling Inclusive Entrepreneurship" featuring Tishawnda Bellamy, entrepreneur and creative writer; Maria Luna, CEO and co-founder of BRAVO Tip or Pay; Violet Duncan, co-founder of Tony Duncan Productions and Dr. Matthew Whitaker, founder and CEO of Diamond Strategies. The session will be moderated by Yolanda A. Facio, Director of Community Entrepreneurship within Entrepreneurship + Innovation, part of the Office of Knowledge Enterprise Development at Arizona State University.

Tickets for the event are $10. To register, visit For more information, send an email to

Office of Economic Development
Contact: Kim Lofgreen
Tel. 480-644-3962