posted on Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Reflections on the Impact of MITEF

Looking at the majestic Seattle skyline on a beautiful October morning, I feel especially fortunate to be part of a vibrant community of entrepreneurs living and working in such a terrific city. Where else can you close a $90 million financing for a new business and then walk out of your office and go for a jog along the water? Perhaps there are other cities with a similar confluence of entrepreneurial spirit, technical savvy and stunning natural beauty, but I have not found any that have the same culture of support for entrepreneurs. In my professional role, I get to work with entrepreneurs who are building tomorrow’s semiconductor companies. Meeting with a Malaysian entrepreneur in New York who is starting a semiconductor company in Europe, makes me believe that the entrepreneurs of the 21st century will operate without constraint of national boundaries. They will be drawn to geographic areas that support innovation, have highly educated workers, and provide a great quality of life. Seattle is one of those global cities that offers immense possibility to builders of companies.

As Chairman of the MIT Enterprise Forum of the Northwest for the 2009 – 2010 Season, I am fortunate to be a part the entrepreneurial ecosystem. As most of you know, our chapter of is one of 24 global chapters of the MIT Enterprise Forum, Inc., based in Cambridge MA and is an affiliate of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. An all-volunteer, not for profit organization, the MIT Enterprise Forum of the Northwest’s sole mission is to help support and develop entrepreneurs through education and networking opportunities. Our organization is a part of MIT’s broad, global commitment to entrepreneurship. A recent report, sponsored in part by the Kauffman Foundation, highlights how MIT has changed the face of business and had a role in the creation of the best known companies in the world, including: Intel, HP, Texas Instruments and Genentech to name only a few. Another resource that MIT provides is the cutting-edge Technology Review magazine. I had the opportunity to hear Jason Pontin, the Editor-in-Chief and Publisher, speak earlier this year and not only is he highly informed and entertaining, but also I expect new and great things from his magazine.

I am particularly excited about our new season about our November 18th, Dinner Program: Breaking News, which is described a little more in Lori's recent blog post.

We have a full and exciting season ahead! I look forward to meeting you at these events and joining me in supporting entrepreneurship in our community.

Barnett L. Silver


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