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Lightship Foundation Announces 2023 Bootcamp Program to Empower Ohio’s Underrepresented Entrepreneur

Impact-driven organization to prepare minority-led businesses for growth within Ohio with assistance from JobsOhio. (From JobsOhio Website)



(Cincinnati, Ohio) -- Lightship Foundation today unveiled plans to expand its Lightship Bootcamp program by hosting six three-day boot camps throughout Ohio in 2023 to provide mentorship, specialized curriculum, and networking for underrepresented entrepreneurs seeking to grow their businesses within the state. JobsOhio, the state’s private economic development corporation, has partnered with the foundation to promote and sponsor the boot camps, which will target businesses within each region of the JobsOhio network.


Lightship Foundation, an impact-driven organization serving remarkable entrepreneurs and ecosystems, established its headquarters in the Cincinnati Innovation District in 2021. The organization has played an integral role in making Ohio more inclusive for minority- and women-owned businesses and helps drive the state’s growing startup ecosystem. The Lightship Foundation acquired and brought Black Tech Week to Cincinnati in 2022, drawing more than 1500 entrepreneurs to the city.


Lightship’s Bootcamp program includes a thoughtfully constructed curriculum and exercises, including investment deck audit and revision, pitch audit and revision consultation, abbreviated financial audit and guidance, legal guidance, brand audit and workshop, customer insight report, business model canvas, product landing page audit and revision, and more. JobsOhio is supporting the expansion of the Lightship Bootcamp program as part of the economic development corporation’s growing inclusion growth strategy.


“Lightship Foundation was founded in Cincinnati with the purpose of supporting remarkable Ohio-based entrepreneurs and innovators— so we are thrilled to be expanding our Lightship Bootcamp programming to other forward-thinking cities throughout the state of Ohio,” said Candice Brackeen, CEO of Lightship Foundation. “We are grateful to be supported by an organization like JobsOhio, which has the statewide reach and network of business and industry partners needed to bring the expansion of this important program to life.”


“This partnership with the Lightship Foundation complements our shared vision to ensure Ohio is more inclusive and accessible for businesses throughout the state,” said J.P. Nauseef, JobsOhio president and CEO. “By assisting the Lightship Bootcamp program, we are investing in innovation, creating jobs, and attracting new talent that can bring more opportunity for underserved members of our business community.”


The boot camps are open to underrepresented entrepreneurs eligible for JobsOhio programs in many of the state’s most attractive business regions, including Dayton, Athens, Columbus, Cleveland, Toledo, and Youngstown. The boot camps are scheduled for the following dates:


  • March 7 - March 9, 2023: Dayton, OH;

  • April 25 - April 27: Athens, OH;

  • June 27 - June 29: Columbus, OH;

  • August 8 - August 10: Cleveland, OH;

  • August 29 - August 31: Toledo, OH; and

  • October 17 - October 19: Youngstown, OH.





About Lightship Foundation

Lightship Foundation is an impact-driven organization serving remarkable entrepreneurs & ecosystems. We leverage corporate partnerships, specialized programming, meaningful mentorship, and capital investments to drive growth within the minority innovation economy. Lightship provides remarkable founders the resources and direction their businesses need to scale.


About JobsOhio

JobsOhio is a private nonprofit economic development corporation designed to drive job creation and new capital investment in Ohio through business attraction, retention, and expansion. The organization also works to seed talent production in its targeted industries and to attract talent to Ohio through Find Your Ohio. JobsOhio works with six regional partners across Ohio: Dayton Development Coalition, Ohio Southeast Economic Development, One Columbus, REDI Cincinnati, Regional Growth Partnership, and Team NEO. Learn more at www.jobsohio.com. Follow us on LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook.


For more information, contact:

Matt Englehart, JobsOhio

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