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Peoria Forward

With the resources you need, leverage our robust programs to accelerate new growth for organizations, businesses and individuals in your community. The J. Orin Edson Entrepreneurship + Innovation Institute at Arizona State University and the city of Peoria are here for you to not just empower you, but grow with you.

Get started with the launch email series:

  • Receive copies of key reports from a variety of partners with West Valley information, data, demographics, local statistics and the status of the current entrepreneurial ecosystem
  • Gain access to on-demand training on how to start a business in Arizona 
  • Receive curated resources to build your organization 
  • Gain insight from your fellow entrepreneurs and neighbors on navigating your entrepreneurial journey  
  • Hear from local mentors, trainers and entrepreneurial resource providers about frequently asked questions and what they want you to know 

Sign Up Now

Take action, get involved, build Peoria.

Each month, three out of every 1,000 people in the United States will start a business. These three entrepreneurs take on a tremendous task and assume a great deal of risk. But the remaining 997 people constitute a community that plays a substantial role in the entrepreneurs’ success, as well. In fact, we depend on these 997 individuals – those who are not entrepreneurs – to support entrepreneurs. You and your communities make ecosystems work.” 

- Kauffman Ecosystem Playbook.

Most Recent Updates

April 2021 Newsletter- Explore entrepreneurship with Pop-Up Peoria at Park West

Subscribe to our email list

Feb. 2021 Blog- Creating New Revenue Sources During COVID-19 and Beyond

Read Peoria Forward curated blogs 

Take a Catalyst Action

Even if you are not an entrepreneur or a business owner, EVERYONE is critical to small business owners and entrepreneurs’ success.  We have created a list of simple actions anyone can take to support local entrepreneurs. Some take as little as 15 minutes to complete. The first step to getting involved is to take action.

Download and take action

Get Involved

Peoria Forward has different events all designed to build connection between the — people, ideas and resources — elements of the entrepreneurial ecosystem.

New to entrepreneurship or just interested in exploring innovation? Welcome aboard the West Valley entrepreneurial ecosystem. ASU Edson E+I  is committed to infusing research-based practices for developing an effective venture into every program, alongside the practical tools, experience and connections you need.


Catalyst Pilots

Peoria coming together to create real-world solutions and new resources for the entire entrepreneurial ecosystem. Catalyst Pilots are working sessions where a diverse group of community voices come together to see if they can create an actual program or pilot to test and iterate. Come with an open mind, ready to work!

Fresh Innovators Series

Designed for people exploring all corners of entrepreneurship and how to get involved in the local entrepreneurial ecosystem in Peoria. From a love of innovation to improving your community, this series looks at a diversity of early-stage topics and experiences.

Skill Building Series

If you are already building an idea but want to connect with the latest in tools, trends and information attend these events, in partnership with local organizations across the West Valley.  


Pitch In (formerly 1 Million Cups)

9:00am - 10:00am (Arizona Time)  | Summer Schedule: 4th Wednesday of the month

Explore what is happening across the Valley by listening to local founders share their ideas in a friendly 6-minute pitch format with 20 minutes of questions. These events are led by the local community and welcome everyone including students, nonprofit and business leaders, artists, and resource providers.

In Spring and Summer 2021, the West Valley, East Valley and Central Phoenix communities will be working together to jointly showcase the diversity of our community and serve as a welcome mat for everyone interested in entrepreneurship in the Metro Valley area.

Use this registration link for the combined Metro Valley chapter events: Register here

Have an idea, venture or project that you would like to share? Email us at: Eric.Heimbecker@asu.edu


Founders Friday 

9:00 am - 10:00am (Arizona Time)  |  The 1st Friday of the Month

Peoria Forward offers high growth potential founders the opportunity to come together to share what they are working on, ask questions and gather targeted resources. 

Interested in participating? Reach out to Peoria.Forward@asu.edu for more information.

Entrepreneurship Day

9:00am - 11:30am (Arizona Time) | The 4th Wednesday of each month

Once a month, entrepreneurs from around the West Valley gather at Pop-Up Peoria to learn what local founders are working on, discuss rotating business topics and work alongside each other on ideas. During the summer, Entrepreneurship Day consists of the following events:

9:00am - 11:30am (Arizona Time) 

10:00am - 11:30am (Arizona Time)

What are office hours? An opportunity to grab a seat and work alongside fellow entrepreneurs at the City of Peoria’s collision space in Park West. Work on your vision in a dedicated space free and open to everyone. Need assistance tackling a specific challenge? Connect with your fellow entrepreneurs and speak directly with our Peoria Forward team to access expertise and resources through the Peoria Forward program.

How to come up with your big idea

9:00am - 10:30am (Arizona Time)|  Wednesday, 6/2/2021

Working on refining an idea or struggling to choose a project to pursue? The Peoria Forward program, an innovative partnership with the J. Orin Edson Entrepreneurship + Innovation Institute at ASU and the City of Peoria, is hosting an interactive idea building workshop to help you fast-track progress on your project. This online and in-person hybrid event will be broadcast from Pop-Up Peoria, the new collision space crated by the City of Peoria, and attendees will have an opportunity to connect, tour the space, and learn how the special guest entrepreneurs started their own local businesses. This is an interactive event with hands-on practice of the concepts. Come prepared to participate and connect with fellow makers, doers and dreamers!

Register Now

Business Builder: How to perform market research

5:30pm - 7:00pm (Arizona Time)  | Postponed

Whether you are starting a business, launching a new product or even writing a nonprofit grant, thorough and methodical market research is one of the most important success factors. And, you don’t need a big budget or special marketing expertise to do it. This Business Builder event will help anyone learn to use basic research steps and access the free, world-class resources in our community that are often overlooked. Attendees will meet local business owners who have successfully applied these steps, learn from their experience, and join an interactive discussion to tackle hurdles being faced.

This event is a special collaboration between the Peoria Forward program, an innovative partnership with the J. Orin Edson Entrepreneurship + Innovation Institute at ASU and the City of Peoria, and the Maricopa Small Busines Development Center, a partner program of the Small Business Administration. It will be an online and in-person hybrid event broadcast from Pop-Up Peoria, the new collision space crated by the City of Peoria.

Register Now

Where to build, create and collaborate: a tour of local spaces

5:30pm - 7:00pm (Arizona Time)  |  Tuesday, 8/24/2021

While many successful companies have been founded in a garage, sometimes you need access to special tools, expert advice and the support of fellow makers, engineers and artists. Join this special event for an in-sider look at the Valley’s top maker spaces and coworking spots for any creative entrepreneur projects ranging from high tech electronics to cutting edge fashion and kiln-fired ceramics. Attendees will learn how to access these resources, go on a live virtual tour and meet fellow creators currently using these spaces. The event also includes a hands-on workshop to spark your next big idea! 

This event is hosted by the Peoria Forward program, an innovative partnership with the J. Orin Edson Entrepreneurship + Innovation Institute at ASU and the City of Peoria. It will be broadcast from Pop-Up Peoria, the new collision space crated by the City of Peoria and is a hybrid event with both in-person and virtual attendance options.

Register Now



Looking for a specific answer? To connect with a local mentor? To be part of the entrepreneurial ecosystem? 

Scheduled a resource wayfinding meeting with our team. Email  Peoria.Forward@asu.edu