Entrepeneurship and Community Impact


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When: Sep 6 2017 - 6:30pm until Sep 6 2017 - 8:30pm
Where: Keoni Auditorium, Imin Conference Center, Honolulu, Hawai‘i, USA

The East-West Center Education Program Presents 
Wednesday Evening Seminar
Fall 2017

Entrepeneurship and Community Impact

Featuring Meli James, President of the Hawaii Venture Capital Association

The seminar is about entrepeneurship, community impact, and how to get started with a great idea. Meli James, entrepeneur and president of the Hawaii Venture Capital Association, will share her experience with starting organizations from the ground up, describing some of the challenges and surprises along the way. She will discuss her current work as a resource for budding entrepeneurs in Hawaii, including ideas about successful approaches to solving problems and fostering an entrepeneurial mindset. By the end of the session, participants should have a deeper understanding of what it takes to put their own ideas into action, and a strong motivation to go out and get started.

Meli James
Hawaii Venture Capital Assoc.

Meli James is the president of the Hawaii Venture Capital Association (HVCA), an organization founded in 1988 that seeks to foster entrepeneurial development through education, networking, and access to capital. Previously, James has been the head of new ventures at Sultan Ventures, a boutique Honolulu-based venture firm focused on early-stage startups and investments as well as the program director of XLR8UH, the University of Hawai‘i's nationally recognized proof-of-concept commercialization center focused on mentoring and investing in UH affiliated innovations. Born and raised in Honolulu, James lived in Silicon Valley for over ten years; there, she co-founded and contributed to numerous startups in the Bay Area and Honolulu, including Nirvino --- a number-one ranked wine app, an Apple Platform Top 100 app, and a Top Ten Lifestyles app (during its time). She is a founding member of the Startup Paradise initiative helping to build a thriving startup community that nurtures collaboration and innovation in Hawai‘i. She is committed to establishing resources to grow talent and high growth to small business ideas. In 2016, James was recognized by Entrepeneur Magazine as one of five Women to Watch. In 2017, she was recognized again by Entrepenur Magazine as one of eight Women Leaders Who Are Disrupting Entrepeneurship. James is a graduate of Cornell University's School of Hotel Administration.

Wednesday Evening Seminar is an East-West Center student-led initiative supported by the Education Program and a generous gift from Richard H. Cox. Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed by presenters and participants at the Wednesday Evening Seminar do not necessarily reflect those of the East-West Center.

Primary Contact Info:
Name: Kuhio Vogeler