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Steve Case Drives Them To Succeed

Evening Program

Monday, October 24, 2022 - 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. ET
Code: 1H0747
This online program is presented on Zoom.
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Co-founder of and former CEO of America Online (AOL), Steve Case is one of America’s best-known and most successful entrepreneurs, and a pioneer in making the Internet part of everyday life. As an investor, Case recognized that jobs and opportunity spurred by technology were concentrated in a select few coastal cities. In other words, talent was equally distributed in the U.S., but opportunity was not. To help celebrate what cities were doing to revitalize their economies Case launched Rise of the Rest: a nationwide platform to back and shine a spotlight on innovative startups launching outside of Silicon Valley and the individuals and organizations that support them. As part of the effort, Case and his team travel by bus to visit startup communities across the country and host pitch competitions to select local companies to back with a $100,000 investment. They have invested in more than 200 companies across 200 cities to date. With a focus on women and people of color, Rise of the Rest is about ending the cycle of dollars flowing to the same people, from the same places.

In conversation with Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution Lonnie Bunch, Case shares some of the stories of these start-up communities, from indoor vegetable farms in coal country to Styrofoam alternatives in Richmond, Virginia, all leveraging regional strengths and betting on the future of innovation beyond the country’s usual tech hubs.

His book The Rise of The Rest: How Entrepreneurs in Surprising Places Are Building the New American Dream (Avid Reader Press) is available for purchase.

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