Sign up to recieve news and updates
HOME   |   CONTACT    Facebook Twitter LinkedIn Google+ Subscribe to MBDA Newsletter

You are hereHome > Innovation


  • Submitted on 18 November 2015

    Eureka! You’ve made a great discovery or have a great idea for a business. The question that you have to ask yourself is can I move forward or has someone else beaten me to the proverbial punch?

    Join the Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) and the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) for a free three-day webinar series to help business owners, inventors, entrepreneurs, and start-ups understand the value of conducting proper prior patent and trademark searches.

    What You Will Learn: 

  • Submitted on 17 August 2015

    Created on August 17, 2015


    Maxine Paul, CEO/CTO and Co-Founder of Pitch Love, an adaptive learning management system that teaches people through feedback and data, believes that innovation is essential to creating solutions that have a large impact on many different people. In order to continue progressing, we need to expose the future generation of entrepreneurs with diverse backgrounds to innovation earlier and more often.

  • Submitted on 13 August 2015

    Created on August 13, 2015

    Lauren Rosario, Innovation Analyst at CodeMyMobile, attended the Commerce Department’s Open for Innovation event because she was interested to learn what established corporations and startups were doing to innovate their products and companies. Through events like Open for Innovation, she believes the government has the ability to attract a caliber of businesses that entrepreneurs would not have an opportunity to meet with otherwise, providing valuable networking opportunities.

  • Submitted on 13 August 2015

    Created on August 13, 2015


    Rod Robinson, Founder and CEO of ConnXus, Inc., a supplier relationship platform that manages all aspects of a corporation’s diversity and compliance programs, discusses the important role a government organization like MBDA plays in the success of an entrepreneur. He believes taking advantage of resources provided by MBDA, such as access to data and analytics to support the business model, as well as meeting with fellow mentors that have walked in their shoes, allows entrepreneurs to reach their full potential.

  • Submitted on 12 August 2015

    Created on August 12, 2015

    MBDA National Director Alejandra Y. Castillo, National Deputy Director Albert Shen, Associate Director Efrain Gonzalez, along with MBDA staff Tooba Awan and Longyang ZhuAs the only Federal agency dedicated to the competitiveness of minority businesses, the Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) was honored to be invited as guests of the White House during the inaugural White House Demo Day hosted by President Barack Obama. The half-day event showcased over 90 minority and female entrepreneurs presenting their groundbreaking and innovative work.

    MBDA National Director Alejandra Y. Castillo, National Deputy Director Albert Shen, Associate Director Efrain Gonzalez, along with MBDA staff Tooba Awan and Longyang Zhu, shared MBDA's client success stories with the entrepreneurs present. MBDA representatives informed the start-ups on federal procurement opportunities and the role MBDA’s nationwide network of Business Centers play in promoting inclusive entrepreneurship through access to contracts, capital, and markets.

  • Submitted on 12 August 2015

    Created on August 12, 2015


    In her role as co-founder of LessonCast Learning, a learning platform that helps community members share best practices, Nicole Tucker-Smith keeps an idealistic mindset that helps her elevate her company to the next level. But she also recognizes the importance of balancing idealism with practicality. The Minority Business Development Agency helps entrepreneurs, like Nicole, with identifying and taking advantage of resources that support day-to-day tasks of a budding startup.

  • Submitted on 11 August 2015

    Created on August 11, 2015

    As the Founder and CEO of Urban Co-Lab, Natalie Madeira Cofield and her team believe that if you empower communities through entrepreneurship and business engagement, you not only give people the opportunity to sustain themselves but also their communities. For more than 10 years, Natalie has been inspired by and influenced by the Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) as a champion for minority-owned businesses.

  • Submitted on 11 August 2015

    Created on August 11, 2015

    Business Owner with Open SignEntrepreneurs are the driving force of our 21st century economy. They have the power to spur innovation, create jobs, stabilize communities, and inspire the next generation of inventors.

    At the Department of Commerce, it is our goal to create the economic conditions that allow start-ups and entrepreneurs to succeed. While we meet this goal through a wide variety of Department initiatives, the Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) focuses on accessing and engaging the talents and inventiveness of all our citizens through inclusive innovation efforts. Inclusive entrepreneurship and inclusive innovation means that every American, regardless of their background or past, has the opportunity to engage the marketplace and offer their goods, services, gifts, and talents to the world.

  • Submitted on 10 August 2015

    Created on August 10, 2015


    On August 4, President Barack Obama hosted the first ever White House Demo Day, and what a day it was.   The content of the day is front and center of what our agency does every day. 

    The White House helped us put a magnifying glass on the wide-ranging talents of innovators from diverse walks of life and across the country and the small companies they lead.  Our economy, especially our entrepreneurial economy is the envy of the world.  For it to fire on all cylinders, we need to draw on talented Americans from all backgrounds and locations and leave no one on the bench. 

    The Demo Day Fact Sheet lays out amazing actions, commitments and announcements made by federal agencies and a broad swath of the private sector.  The day was nothing short of astounding and SBA’s Office of Investment and Innovation was equally excited to have had a leadership role supporting the White House Office of Science and Technology.

  • Submitted on 06 August 2015

    Created on August 6, 2015

    NIST Lab to MarketThe U.S. Department of Commerce has established a new partnership between the Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA), the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and the Federal Laboratory Consortium for Technology Transfer (FLC) to support minority business development through our nation’s investment in research and development at more than 300 federal laboratories. 

    The Minority Business Enterprise Technology Transfer Innovation Consortium will support American innovation and global competitiveness by promoting high-technology opportunities to groups that have had historically low participation in this process. It was one of a number of initiatives to promote entrepreneurship announced as part of the first White House Demo Day, held August 4, 2015. 

    By fostering “lab-to-market” initiatives, the partnership aims to increase the number of minority businesses that engage in advanced technology transfer by creating strategic regional ecosystems that link the national science and technology enterprise with the MBDA centers that support minority businesses.

    “MBDA is very excited about this new partnership. It will ensure that minority-owned firms and students of color are truly engaged in the 21st century economy,” said Alejandra Y. Castillo, national director at MBDA. “It will support diverse communities that need innovation resources to spur local job creation in various STEM industries.” 

What MBDA Does