Local entrepreneurs gather in D.C. for mutual inspiration

Local entrepreneurs gathered in D.C. for a Google-hosted inspiration event. (Photo: Michael Meadows)

Inspiring entrepreneurs from all over the metropolitan region came together Thursday evening, united in mutual recognition of pursuing their passion.

Event coordinator Victoria Harris who works with CapMacDC, a local food truck vendor, teamed with Google and Zagat at their D.C. offices to host a round table discussion with other young entrepreneurs.

Their aim was to empower, inspire and connect young entrepreneurs with like-minded individuals. According to a USNews Census collected in 2011, Washington, D.C. ranked third for the most educated cities in America. With over 10 highly competitive universities in the immediate area, young professionals are in abundance.

Ron Cade, the 26-year-old CEO of Tapxi, a mobile taxi app, said, “You are the only thing in between that business succeeding or failing.” Graduating from Morehouse and getting a degree from Howard Law was just the beginning for Cade, who has had his hand in quite a few businesses—from sponsoring concerts to being able to produce art on demand.

Part of Cade’s due diligence in bolstering his company is consistently meeting with supporters. Cade advises against being fearful of speaking to others about your business plan when looking for investors, to take mitigated risks and not gamble and to align yourself with people who have strengths that are different than yours.

Panelist and Howard Alum Sakita Holley, who is the CEO of House of Success, a PR and Lifestyle Branding Company, advised entrepreneurs to “Guard your Energy.” Holley initially went to work for Prudential Financial but left to start her own business, which she said was ultimately a tough decision.

Brian Arnoff, the Owner/Chef of CapMacDC stressed the importance of pushing your idea without the fear of failure. Thomas Edison tried 100 times before he got his invention right. Brian and his brother, Daniel Arnoff, are both entrepreneurs but in very different ways. Brian runs his food truck and Daniel is taking over their family’s moving, storage and rigging company.

Corriee Davidson, the community adviser at Google in D.C., said the company is invested in helping sponsor such events—helping local businesses come together and better use their networks to benefit everyone. During the event, Davidson also had some computers active to show how user friendly google+ , among other products, can cater to young entrepreneurs.

Empowered, Inspired and connected was Victoria’s goal and it was well accomplished.