Entrepreneurship has the power to transform lives, build individual and community wealth, and catalyze positive change. New Haven is at an important inflection point; by boosting entrepreneurship and small business growth within under-connected communities, the community has the potential to undo structural inequities and remove the barriers to job creation.


The New Haven Equitable Entrepreneurial Ecosystem (NHE3) was conceived by The Community Foundation (TCF) to build an equitable entrepreneurial ecosystem designed for historically marginalized entrepreneurs, such as those who identify as Black, Latinx, and women, in order to:

  • Build individual and family wealth through financial independence.
  • Create community wealth and community power.
  • Build generational wealth.
  • Support structural change and remove barriers of structural racism.
  • Create jobs and economic sustainability.

New Haven Equitable Entrepreneurial Ecosystem (NHE3)

The purpose of the New Haven Equitable Entrepreneurial Ecosystem (NHE3) is to convene leaders, community members, and entrepreneurs in implementing short-term infrastructure projects and devising a long-term strategic plan.

The two-year engagement in New Haven will be led by the NHE3 Council: a group that leads NHE3 implementation by providing guidance and making key decisions about this work. This team is supported by residents, NHE3 staff, TCF, the New Haven Innovation Collaborative (NHIC), Forward Cities and local funding partners. The Council is designed to be an inclusive, diverse, multicultural, multisector group of leaders, activists, and entrepreneurs who are using this work to achieve more racial, gender, and economic equity.

The Council Will Work To:

  • Identify key barriers to local entrepreneurial engagement.
  • Develop community-fed solutions to overcoming these barriers.
  • Implement these solutions in short-term pilot projects.

Watch this video from the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation explain entrepreneurial ecosystem building.

The Partners

New Haven Innovation Collaborative is an organization of entrepreneurs, researchers, and community builders focused on promoting, connecting, and enabling the ideas and talents that fuel the future of New Haven’s diverse innovation sectors, in life sciences, digital technology, and creative and cultural economies. Learn more about them here.

Keep In Touch

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Arthur W. Thomas III

Director of Entrepreneurial Initiatives and Inclusive Economic Opportunity


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