The first event was held at the Kauffman Foundation in Kansas City, MO, a focal point for entrepreneurship in America, and attracted almost 100 participants to engage in interactive discussion and dialogue about entrepreneurship. Sponsors of the event included the Kauffman Foundation, AARP, the National Association for Community College Entrepreneurship (NACCE) and CPL.
Written evaluations from the event indicated that almost all participants have a strong desire to start a new business; 97 percent stated they are more likely to create a new business as a result of attending the daylong meeting.
These responses mirror a national trend where increasingly more Baby Boomers are starting their own businesses. In fact, according to the Kauffman Foundation, from 1996 to 2011 the number of Baby Boomers starting a business increased by nearly seven percent, the largest increase among all age groups. For people 20-44, the number of people starting a new business actually fell about five percent during that same time period.
“There is a wide range of individual, economic and societal benefits for the Baby Boomers to start new businesses,”
Additional feedback from the meeting found that 87 percent of attendees stated that the event increased their awareness and understanding of the benefits and opportunities provided by entrepreneurship “very much” or “a great deal.” Seventy-seven percent indicated that they were “a great deal” or “very much” more likely to pursue programs or courses on entrepreneurship as a result of attending the event.
Speakers from the March meeting included Benno C. Schmidt, Jr., Interim President & CEO, Kauffman Foundation and former President, Yale University; Bruce Merrifield, former U.S. Undersecretary of Commerce and Chaired Professor of Entrepreneurship, the Wharton School; Mary Beth Izard, author of BoomerPreneurs;
Human Resource Services, Inc. (HRS) created CPL as a non-profit to serve as the bridge between people 55 and older and opportunities that enable them to continue as productive contributors. The economic benefits of enabling people 55+ to continue working include providing them with needed income, contributing to–instead of drawing from–entitlement programs, reducing unemployment and increasing national economic growth.
The next “Spotlight on Entrepreneurship Opportunities for Baby Boomers” meetings are scheduled to be held at Babson College in Wellesley, MA on September 14, Northwestern University/Kellogg School of Business in Chicago on October 11, and the University of Denver on November 15. To register, visit
Jenny Foust or Alicia Hassinger
Communications Strategy Group
firstname.lastname@example.org or ahassinger@csg-
William K. Zinke or James R. Hooks
Center for Productive Longevity
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About the Center for Productive Longevity
The mission of CPL is to be the bridge between people 55 and older and their engagement in productive activities, paid and volunteer, where they are qualified and ready to continue adding value. It is imperative that we recognize the value added by an aging workforce. Visit www.ctrpl.org for more information.
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