Grassroots-Level Entrepeneurship

Meadow With Yellow Dandelions by franky242“If economic development was viewed as a grassroots level movement, Entrepreneurs would be considered the dandelions shining on the ground.” – Reina Valenzuela

Amig@s this much I know: Entrepreneurs coming into the United States of America are genuinely interested in trade, import, export, and looking to do business beyond our borders and language barriers… “Más allá de las fronteras y barreras del lenguaje”.

Immigrants in the USA have demonstrated time and time again, the will and determination to overcome adversity. We seek a place where we can live with dignity and guarantee our children the same opportunities that the first immigrants sought. You must have heard this before “Immigrants arrive in this country pursuing their dreams” but did you know that the dream of building a business enterprise is quite popular? I have personally witnessed –within my own family and the business community I service–how we nurture the entrepreneurial spirit; how it becomes that common thread woven into the economic fabric of our society. This is how we thrive, like little dandelions on a field, growing roots and flourishing in our newfound homeland.

I recently had the privilege of serving as a Judge for the LA IDEA Business Pitch and evaluated business plans submitted. This experience gave me what I call the Entrepreneurial Tour throughout Latin America. Yes! it took me to Chile, Colombia, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Honduras, Mexico and several states of the United States of America. The projects presented solutions to real problems, ways to fill a void, products to meet the needs of the people; the keystones were innovation and commitment to excellence.

It was not surprising to see that almost all the partnerships formed between Latin American and U.S. based companies had teamed up with Latinos in the United States. They presented ideas that, if implemented, can deliver a significant socio-economic impact to the communities. These partnerships evolve with limited resources and this type of initiatives help strengthen them. More should be done. To me, this brought the term “Global Citizenship” from somewhere up in the clouds all the way down into earth’s soil. Suddenly… the image of dandelions was not only beautiful, but also promising!

Photo credit: “Meadow With Yellow Dandelions” by franky242 @

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