Dennis Spielman

The real and imaginative adventures of Dennis Spielman

Tag: Oklahoma Venture Forum

OVF: Donna Miller and Liz Charles

For the Oklahoma Venture Forum, I interviewed Donna Miller and Liz Charles about their ventures in Oklahoma. The Oklahoma Venture Forum is a non-profit organization providing entrepreneurs and growing ventures in Oklahoma access to capital and management development through education, networking, and other resources. I’ve partnered with The Golding Group to record and host the podcast series. 

Donna Miller with Purse Power uses her platform to inspire women to use their enormous economic power to buy from companies that actively create opportunities for women and shatter the glass ceiling in a matter of quarters rather than decades.

Liz Charles fights for women’s rights in her position as Executive Director of the Oklahoma Women’s Coalition. The coalition’s mission is “to champion the collective power of Oklahomans to advance gender equity and justice.”

OVF: Trang Nguyen, Douglas Sorocco & Craig Shimasaki

The Oklahoma Venture Forum is a non-profit organization providing entrepreneurs and growing ventures in Oklahoma access to capital and management development through education, networking, and other resources. I’ve partnered with The Golding Group to record and host the podcast series. These are the first two episodes that feature me as the host.

Dr. Nguyen launched Mimosa Health in May 2017 with a mission to provide expert advice on the use of medications by older adults. Mimosa Health utilizes specialized knowledge in geriatrics and the unique medication-related needs of the senior population. Dr. Nguyen helps seniors reduce medication-related problems, reduce healthcare costs, and improve their quality of life through our community medication education seminars and personalized senior health services.

Douglas Sorocco is owner of Dunlap Codding in Oklahoma City, an intellectual property attorney, PHOSITA blogger, chemist, visionary, social entrepreneur and creator of DC on Film Row. He’s also one of the volunteer co-directors of the new Oklahoma Entrepreneurship Mentoring Program (OKEMP). Modeled after MIT’s Venture Mentoring Service (MIT VMS), OKEMP matches an entrepreneur with a team of unbiased, experienced mentors.

“This type of commitment is what’s been missing in Oklahoma,” he says. “OKEMP provides mentoring teams who follow entrepreneurs throughout their whole career. Because true entrepreneurs don’t stop with just one idea.”

“One of the beauties of the program is that no matter where the entrepreneurs are in their life cycle, they’re getting matched up with mentors who can offer unbiased, unconflicted advice.”

What mentors also offer is access to their experiences as successful entrepreneurs, delivered during regularly scheduled 90-minute meetings. “There is a curriculum,” explains Sorocco, “but it is driven by the entrepreneurs who are coming with questions and concerns.”

“For example, the first entrepreneur may already have a prototype without ever looking at markets. So it’s backward! So the mentor helps identify who’s going to buy the product. Whereas the second entrepreneur may be a programmer who’s never sold anything. So the mentoring team teaches how to develop relationships that don’t seem too transactional.”

“Most entrepreneurs are going to fail with their first or second company. What we need for them to do is learn along the way so that when they get to number three or four, they’re more likely to succeed.”

Oklahoma Venture Forum for November 2019

If you missed my announcement on social media, I’ve partnered with The Golding Group to record the Oklahoma Venture Forum podcast! OVF is a non-profit organization providing entrepreneurs and growing ventures in Oklahoma access to capital and management development through education, networking, and other resources.

For November, I recorded the Pritch Pritchard interviews in December, I’ll be taking over hosting duties interviewing Oklahoma entrepreneurs. The November episodes have been released today.

Transparency, trust, and transformation at the Better Business Bureau of Central Oklahoma. How does an Oklahoma organization anticipate its 90th birthday? In the case of the Better Business Bureau of Central Oklahoma, it stays true to the core values established in 1930 while continually adapting its services to the business community. “Transparency is one of the core values of our business,” says Kitt Letcher, the CEO and President of the Bureau. “And our standards of trust must be met before a business can earn BBB accreditation. But we’re also really trying to transform our image to business owners.”

After earning his Ph.D. in Spanish at the University of Texas at Austin, Rob Reynolds began his career as a university faculty member teaching languages and literature. He has also served in university administration, as a textbook publishing executive, and as a co-founder and/or leader of multiple educational technology startups. Reynolds currently serves as Executive Director of TEL Library, a non-profit, public library dedicated to providing affordable learning to anyone, anywhere.

TEL Library continues to innovate content management and publishing with a goal of making high-quality education affordable and easily accessible for everyone, everywhere. They are currently building a library of high-quality, low-cost learning content that can be repurposed and distributed quickly and efficiently across multiple product types and markets. In the next phase, TEL Library’s long-term goal is to leverage its structured data framework and make its structured content available to third-party AI systems to make high-quality, affordable education accessible worldwide.

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