UW-Eau Claire: Wisconsin Entrepreneurs’ Network Up and Running at UW-Eau Claire

MAILED: Sept. 28, 2005

EAU CLAIRE — The Wisconsin Entrepreneurs’ Network is a gateway to deliver state-wide entrepreneurial services and a wealth of resources and contacts that can support entrepreneurs, including service providers, business leaders, university experts, financial leaders and angel investors. WEN was established to integrate and link existing programs, services, opportunities and connections for small business.

“WEN will provide programs and services to small and emerging businesses, resulting in job creation and retention, business start-ups, expansions and acquisitions, and strengthened linkages with the rich network of resources in the state,” said Department of Commerce secretary Mary Burke.

Pat Dillon joined the Wisconsin Entrepreneurs’ Network on June 1, 2005, as director of the Northwest Region/University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, located in the UW-Eau Claire Continuing Education/UW-Extension office at 210 Water Street. She brings more than 15 years of public-private sector knowledge and experience to WEN. Previously, Dillon was the
executive director of Minnesota Project Innovation, Inc., where she consulted with hundreds of companies in the Small Business Innovation Research and Small Business Technology Transfer Programs, resulting in more than 30 seed, early stage and emerging high technology companies to win more than $20 million in research awards.

Dillon is recognized nationally and locally for her knowledge and expertise. In 1999, she was awarded the prestigious Small Business Administration Tibbetts Award for her excellence in the SBIR/STTR Programs, and in 2001, she was recognized by City Business (Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal) as one of the 25 Most Innovative Women in Minneapolis.

Dillon will conduct several workshops on “Bringing Your Technological Innovations to Life.” The workshops will be held from 9 a.m. to noon, Nov. 9 in Menomonie and Nov. 29 in Chippewa Falls, and are designed for individuals or companies with technology-based ideas that require research and development leading to commercialization. The $2.2 billion federal SBIR and STTR Programs will be discussed. Since 1983, Wisconsin’s technology businesses have been awarded more than $163 million of SBIR and STTR funding.

“WEN can put individuals and companies in touch with these sources of alternative financing,” said Dillon. “SBIR and STTR federal grants or contracts can make the difference as to whether an innovation actually gets to market.”

For additional information, please contact UW-Eau Claire Continuing Education/UW-Extension at (715) 836-3636 or (800) 582-5182, visit www.wenportal.org, or email [email protected]