Five years of celebrating Startup Day Across America
By Reps. Darrell Issa & Jared Polis | TheHill.com
Five years ago, we had an idea. Combining our business backgrounds and our duty as lawmakers, we figured it was time for members of Congress to open a dialogue with our nation’s entrepreneurs, small businesses, and startups.
We both know what it’s like to start a new business, and we both have seen first-hand the challenges new companies face as they take the entrepreneurial leap of faith to step out and chase their dream. We’ve seen for ourselves the challenges businesses must overcome and the incredible joy that comes when your hard work finally pays off. We wanted to share this important experience with our colleagues in Congress, to help others see why it’s so important to support job creation, and work together to ignite the fire of American ingenuity.
So five years ago, we launched “Startup Day Across America,” a day devoted to celebrating the entrepreneurship taking place right in our backyards and connect elected officials with startups in their communities nationwide. We’ve been hard at work, as this bipartisan initiative has grown, expanding into both chambers of Congress and increasing participation every year. Over the last five years, Democratic and Republican members of Congress have taken part in Startup Day to engage with new businesses in their neighborhood, and learn about the important role startups play in each and every one of our communities.
We’ve watched as the startup industry has grown not only in our districts, but also across the country. In 2013, when we first launched Startup Day, startup activity was at its lowest point in the last twenty years. Now, it’s continued to rebound, increasing year after year. Today the percentage of adults becoming entrepreneurs in a given month is up 15 percent compared to 2014. …read more…