New Interise Partnership Launches RiseUp Springfield

rise-up springfield logos



July 10, 2017 (Springfield, MA) – Mayor Domenic J. Sarno, the Association of Black Business & Professionals (ABBP), and the Springfield Regional Commerce, in collaboration with Interise, announce ‘RiseUp Springfield’.

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Instructor Series: Toby Stansell

growth accelerator Meet Toby Stansell, an Interise instructor who has been teaching the Greenville Chamber's Minority Business Accelerator in Greenville, SC. The program, powered by Interise's StreetWise 'MBA' curriculum, is designed to advance economic inclusion by increasing the overall capacity of locally-based growth-oriented MBEs. Toby serves in executive management roles for high-impact, fast-growth organizations that want to leverage innovation and technology for improved operational and financial performance.

How would you describe the type of business owner that participates in the StreetWise 'MBA'?
The business owner that participates in StreetWise 'MBA' is committed to the entrepreneurial path. They would rather “go down with the ship” than serve as an employee in a traditional role for an established organization. They have a genuine interest in the market space in which their business operates and they are absolutely passionate about the product(s) or service(s) that their organization brings to that market… to the degree that they spend countless hours thinking and plotting how to make improvements to their ”deliverable." This includes improving quality, uniqueness, performance, aesthetics, packaging, pricing, marketing... anything that will move their solution as far away as possible from being considered a commodity and toward a market position in which their offering is considered unique or “exclusive.”

The second primary characteristic of a business owner that participates in the StreetWise 'MBA' program is that they know that they can run their business more effectively… they just don’t know how. They are willing to invest the many hours in preparation, classroom time, and testing the principles that are espoused by the program to improve the performance and health of their organization and elevate their chances of achieving a sustainable market position and long-term financial success. In short, they want to reduce their dependence upon “luck” as the primary success factor and instead learn and apply empirical business knowledge and skills in the arenas of strategic growth planning, finance, sales, human resources, etc. The StreetWise 'MBA' program equips and enables the business owner to lead and manage their business in a fact-based, data-driven fashion using principles that work in today’s market conditions.

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Interise Presents at US Conference of Mayors


Interise participates in the 86th Annual Meeting of the US Conference of Mayors in Washington, DC, where Director of National Programs Bernard Johnson will present to the Council on Metro Economies and the New American City.



During the session, Johnson will present on poverty and economic development, the top economic concern for mayors according to the 2017 Menino Survey of Mayors. Johnson draws insight from the Interise network and proven impact of second-stage growth companies. Small businesses in low- and moderate-income communities can create local wealth... if they achieve scale, resilience, and integration into regional, national and/or international markets. To achieve this, they need access to an equitable and inclusive ecosystem for second-stage businesses.

Interise's proven model for small business growth alone leveraged the growth of 6000+ small business owners in 69 cities across the United States.

Johnson will share top insights from this report, prepared for the Council on Metro Economies and the New American City at the 85th Annual Meeting of the US Conference of Mayors. Read the reports with impact data and insights for more.



 “The extent of and continuing increase in inequality in the United States greatly concerns me,” Janet Yellen, Federal Reserve Chair

Business ownership is a route to wealth creation and closing the racial wealth gap. The catch: Lack of wealth inhibits entrepreneurship. Small business owners often rely on their own savings, equity in their home, and loans from family and friends to start their businesses, grow their businesses, or even to meet the needs of day-to-day cash flow. Business owners without these resources bear a distinct disadvantage.

Capacity-building programs support small businesses to develop such assets as knowledge, know-how, and networks around contracting, financing, and strategic planning. Interise research has found that, through capacity building, minority-owned small businesses and businesses located in low- to moderate-income (LMI) communities increase revenues and create jobs at rates higher than other established small businesses.

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Interise is proud to honor our nation's service men and women this Veterans Day! According to the US Small Business Administration, 9% of US firms are owned by veterans, employing around 5.8 million people. Many veterans have completed Interise's StreetWise 'MBA'TM program in 73 cities across the country. To celebrate Veterans Day, Interise is highlighting a few alumni small business owners who have continued to serve their communities, even after finishing their military service.

On contracting with the National Football League to power Superbowl XLVI: “You have to embrace how hard running a small business is. Hard work pays off.” - Interise Alum Shane Conner; Owner of Atec Inc. in Lebanon, IN


“When you’ve done cool projects like the Watt Innovation Center, it starts to build your portfolio. Then, when you do come across a large project you can say, “Hey look, we did this. Look at the reviews.” - Interise Alum Greg Carpenter; Owner of Synergy Media Group in Pittsburgh, PA


“If you as a small business are smart enough to embrace the adversity that exists you will be a better business person. You will be a better human being for it.” - Interise Alum Michael Tipton; Owner of Integrity Communications Solutions in Colorado Springs, CO


“Winning contracts in the federal market takes a different approach from what served you well in the private sector. Every business process needs to be re-calibrated toward the needs of the federal customer.” - Interise Alum Dan Proulx; Owner of Monument Construction LLC in Nashua, NH


For more, check out Interise's StreetWise 'MBA'TM, a game changing capacity-building program recognized by the World Bank and the US Federal Reserve.