Virginia Beach Economic Development and 1701 Coworking selected the next two winners for the Entrepreneur-in-Residence (EIR) Program

Friday, September 18, 2020

​Virginia Beach Economic Development, in collaboration with 1701 Coworking, has selected the next two participants for the EIR program: Kate Johnson with Heritage Business Services and freelance educator Meghan Raftery.

The three-month-long program offers a unique way for entrepreneurs to learn and grow. "The entrepreneurial spirit is alive and well in Virginia Beach," said Ray White with Virginia Beach Economic Development. "The City's partnership with the 1701 EIR program continues to provide a platform through which locally grown and owned new businesses prosper. The support the program lends to individuals working toward self-sustainability is exemplified by the quality business entities that develop in this coworking space. We take great pride in the results generated through this public-private partnership."

"Feedback from previous cohorts of the EIR program was positive. The participants felt particularly appreciative of the assistance they received related to technology, hiring and strategic planning," Lisa DeNoia, 1701 co-founder, explained. "We're excited to kick off the next quarter with our new entrepreneurs-in-residence and look forward to helping them grow their businesses in Virginia Beach."

Kate Johnson owns Heritage Business Services, where she is a virtual bookkeeper serving clients across the country and locally here in Virginia Beach. She is a military spouse who created her own business so she could leverage her innate abilities and have the flexibility to be a mom. Kate is simultaneously launching a community called 'The Bookkeeping Side Hustle,' a collaborative and educational forum where she hosts interviews, shares her e-book and builds an accounting community.

Kate is looking to gain a variety of experiences from the EIR program including technology support, networking, and how to manage two growing businesses.

Meghan Raftery is a freelance educator launching a design collaborative, a platform that would allow educators to create their own businesses or side hustles based on their educational skills. She is simultaneously launching her own brand for creating curriculum for school districts, individual educators and families. Meghan has a passion for the Virginia Beach community and works on many projects for local businesses, including the Crop Foundation, Read Books VB and Operations Smile.

Meghan is looking to gain knowledge in branding, digital platforms, marketing, and how to grow her staff from the Entrepreneur-In-Residence program. 

A total of eight participants will be selected throughout 2020 to participate in the program. Selectees will be chosen every three months. The next session starts in the winter, and the deadline to apply to be considered is Nov. 27, 2020. For additional information, visit 1701VB.com/eir.

The mission of the Virginia Beach Department of Economic Development is to attract and retain national and international businesses to stimulate capital investment and create jobs. The Department of Economic Development received re-accreditation through the International Economic Development Council in 2016 and is one of only 50 economic development organizations in the world to have this recognition. Virginia Beach was named America's #1 best big city to live in by wallethub.com. For more information, visit www.yesvirginiabeach.com

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