Network to connect startup founders with experienced business leaders


DAYTON – The Launch Dayton Mentor Network is a new program to provide existing entrepreneurs in the Dayton region access to a network of skilled mentors who provide professional guidance to help entrepreneurs meet specific business milestones.

“The goal of the program is to foster a thriving entrepreneurial ecosystem where business owners of all stages, industries and demographics experience success, become sustainable and scale their companies,” Parallax Advanced Research Program Manager KeAnna Daniels said. “Our startup founders have proven themselves resilient, and we can’t wait to help them grow.”

The Launch Dayton Mentor Network will be managed by Parallax Advanced Research on behalf of Launch Dayton, a collaborative effort of entrepreneurial resource provider organizations across the region to support and promote all Daytonians building businesses. Launch Dayton partners believe everyone, regardless of their background, should have the opportunity to determine their own economic prosperity. The Launch Dayton Mentor Network is made possible through Ohio Third Frontier funding via The Entrepreneurs Center.

“It has long been a goal to offer a robust mentor network to connect innovative startup founders to the wealth of expertise available through our region’s top business leaders,” The Entrepreneurs Center President Scott Koorndyk said. “Mentorship has been shown to make a difference in the success of startups; we’re thrilled to offer this benefit to Dayton entrepreneurs with the Launch Dayton Mentor Network.”

“Being a Launch Dayton partner is important to the overall work we’re doing at Parallax Advanced Research in support of innovation and creativity. Our Launch Dayton team is our local arm that supports the innovation ecosystem, and we are excited to be a part of a new project to embolden innovative entrepreneurs and help make their ideas successful,” Parallax Advanced Research CEO Dennis Andersh said.

Launch Dayton Mentor Network managers are recruiting both mentors and mentees for the new program, which will kick off in early 2021.

Become a mentor. The Launch Dayton Mentor Network seeks altruistic individuals who are willing to volunteer their time and expertise and are passionate about mentoring early-stage and existing entrepreneurs on their entrepreneurial journey. Mentors will advise and guide, accelerate mentee business growth and provide an ongoing educational relationship.

There are only 25 mentor spots open for the pilot run of the program. Interviews with applicants will begin in January 2021.

Mentors are expected to:

• Be open and honest

• Provide sound advice and feedback

• Share contacts and connections

• Keep confidential all mentee business information learned in the course of mentoring

• Dedicate at least two hours per month per mentee

• Have fun

To qualify to be a mentor, you must:

• Be a current or former founder, owner, principal, executive or senior officer of a company or business

• Have experience successfully operating a company or business

• Be able to volunteer time

• Have a passion for mentoring entrepreneurs

• Ensure a trusted environment for the entrepreneur free of any conflicts of interest

Become a mentee. The Launch Dayton Mentor Network is designed for entrepreneurs seeking mentorship for their business, individuals committed to improving as a business owner/operator, founders willing to put in the work that comes from their mentoring sessions, business owners who are coachable and open to feedback.

• Mentees are expected to:

• Commit to the mentoring process and the relationship with your assigned mentor(s)

• Be open and honest about your business (the good, the bad and the ugly)

• Listen, reflect, plan, do

• Know what you want to gain and accomplish from your mentor(s)

• Keep confidential all mentor business information learned in the course of mentoring

• Dedicate two hours per month to meeting with your mentor

• Have fun

To qualify to be a mentee, you must:

• Have an existing business operating for at least six months with revenue

• That business must be located in the Dayton region

To learn more and apply to be part of the Launch Dayton Mentor Network, visit https://bit.ly/LDMentorNetwork.