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2024 Wisconsin Connecting Entrepreneurial Communities Conference


May 2024 – On May 30-31, over two hundred rural economic developers, community leaders, and entrepreneurs descended upon Platteville, WI, a small town in southwestern Wisconsin, population of 11,840, for Wisconsin’s first Connecting Entrepreneurial Communities (CEC) Conference. Known as a conference “about small towns, for small towns,” the CEC conference offers programming, discussion, and networking for stakeholders in Wisconsin’s rural business development. Other Midwestern states such as Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, and Nebraska hold the CEC Conference on an annual basis as part of their rural economic development strategy. 

Conference Schedule

Day 1

Track 1: Key Partners in Dynamic Entrepreneurial Ecosystems

Track 2: Start-up Support and Resources 101

Track 1: Economic Development Case Study: Grant County

Track 3: Creating Communities of Belonging in Rural Wisconsin

Track 4: Financial Resources for Agri-preneurs

Track 1: Economic Development Strategy, Roles, & Tactics

Track 2: Business Start-Up Financing Resources

Track 3: Collective Entrepreneurship through Cooperatives

Track 4: Local Food Systems: What is the Economic Impact?

Day 2

Track 1: Entrepreneurial Ecosystem Building in Practice with the REV Program

Track 2: Preserving Community Assets: Facilitating Business Succession Planning

This conference is made possible, in part, by federal award number SLFRP0135 awarded to the Board of Regents of the University of Wisconsin System on behalf of the University of Wisconsin-Madison Division of Extension via the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation and the Wisconsin Department of Administration.
Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations are those of the presenter and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation.

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