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Francine Hardaway

Oct 20, 2009, 10:06:02 AM10/20/09
to, Merlin Mann, Michelle Robson,, valerie jenkins

Dear Friends and Colleagues,

For the last four years, it has been my honor to serve as unpaid executive director of OTEF, the Opportunity through Entrepreneurship Foundation.  A grass roots organization based here in Phoenix, OTEF educates, supports and mentors at-risk populations in entrepreneurship as a path to economic self-sufficiency.  During that time, OTEF has supported local  entrepreneurs as well as programs for the disadvantaged at both the SEEDS House and Tumbleweed and a new program  for laid off employees– Blueprint for Survival

The thing I like best about the OTEF story is that, to date, all of the foundation’s funding has come from the efforts of valley entrepreneurs and their friends from across the country rolling up their sleeves to put on the Arizona Entrepreneurship Conference each November.  100% of the conference proceeds go to support OTEF’s work throughout the year and all of the speakers – including over 150 valley entrepreneurs and nationally known names like Michael Gerber, Gary Vee, Robert Scoble,  Matt Mullenweg, and many others have given of their time and talent to support not only our entrepreneurial community but also OTEF’s mission.  As a speaker, supporter, communicator, we need you to help us maximize attendance, which is how we get our program money.

This year’s conference – AZEC09  "Bright Spots in the Recession" - is shaping up to be the best one yet. If you go to, you can get their discount, too.

I hope you can join us for stories on entrepreneurial successes in health care, digital media, sustainability, and cloud computing PLUS lots of ideas shared by CEOs on the front lines who are making things work!.

Breakout sessions – an AZEC tradition – feature great valley entrepreneurs

General Sessions include Keynotes from:

·         Tara Hunt "The Whuffie Factor"  

·         Kevin Surace, CEO of Serious Materials

·         Merlin Mann, 43 Folders

-      Pam Slim, Escape from Cubicle Nation

·         Howard Lindzon, co-founder of Stocktwits

·         Michelle Robson, founder of EmpowHer

So please take a day with me to celebrate the best of Arizona Entrepreneurship this November 12th.  To take advantage of  registration savings, just click here.  Even if you cannot attend, you have an opportunity to sponsor a student if you wish.  You will see information on the EventBrite registration page.

I can’t finish up this note without thanking the great organizations who support both OTEF and the AZEC09: The Business Journal Phoenix and Infusionsoft – who have generously stepped up EVERY year, as well as Mashable, Microsoft, The Town of Gilbert, Gangplank, Stealthmode Partners, CorePurpose, and  The Social Media, PLUS our great friends and community partners at The Knight Center for Digital Media, EO, TiE-Arizona, and The Arizona Technology Council.

Last, but never least, thank YOU for taking the time to read this note.  I truly hope to see you November 12, 2009 at AZEC09, or at least see this in your blog.

All the best.

Francine Hardaway, Ph.D, Stealthmode Partners

Don't forget to register for AZEC09:

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