After forming in 2000, the Idea Village has pushed people to start entrepreneurial endeavors in New Orleans. This collective of professionals, MBAs and investors has helped over 255 business plans come into fruition. And this past April, the U.S. Commerce Department’s Economic Development Administration awarded Idea Village an $800,000 grant to bolster the nonprofit group’s efforts.
The group itself started from a crazy idea scribbled on a cocktail napkin. A group of friends – all of whom had lived in other cities and returned home to New Orleans – decided that creating a catalyst for small businesses to form would invigorate the city. Lately the Idea Village has been targeting startups interested in environmentally sustainable practices.
The group’s mantra and modus operandi, “Trust Your Crazy Ideas,” is now the title of a book Idea Village is publishing to salute New Orleans’ leading entrepreneurs, past, present and future. The Idea Village recruited writer Sally Forman and photographer Margaret Beer to develop the book. Also featured on our cover are Merritt Lane, president and CEO of Canal Barge Company and immediate past chairman of the Idea Village Board of Directors and Mark Romig, vice president for marketing and public relations of the Hospital Corporation America and chairman of the Idea Village Board of Directors.
By donating $500 to Idea Village, one can receive a limited-edition copy of the book and an invitation to the book launch party at Intellectual Property Fri., October 23. Visit www.ideavillage.org for more information about the book and about Idea Village.
Photograph by Greg Miles
Photographed at The Idea Village,
515 Girod St.
Special thanks to Lauren Baum and Tim Williamson. Wallpaper by Flavor Paper.