Built locally. Celebrated globally.
For the second year in a row, GEW Fort Worth was the largest GEW chapter in the USA with 135 sessions and over 4,700 attendees. After going fully virtual in 2020, our organizing team took the pulse of our community and determined that there was an appetite for both in-person and virtual events in 2021.
The results speak to the changing nature of how people interact in an increasingly digital world – 55 percent of attendees joined virtual sessions while 45 percent attended in-person. All-in-all 2021 saw the largest attendance in our four-year history, and we plan to continue offering a hybrid event moving forward in order to engage the largest number of people in the most convenient way for them.
Sponsors Show Commitment to Entrepreneurship
Dell Technologies was the title sponsor for GEW FW and they were instrumental in making the week a success. There were numerous Fort Worth based sponsors and due to our success over the last four years we have attracted funding partners from other parts of the state.
Organizing partners invested cash, employee time and in-kind services throughout the 6-month planning process. This is truly a community initiative that isn’t “owned” by just one organization that is calling all the shots but instead is led by entrepreneurs and entrepreneurial support organizations (ESOs) who volunteer their time to make this happen each year.
Community Partners Make this Work
We were able to reman #1 in the US by engaging with 56 community partners that generated all the content for the week. The community partners are comprised of entrepreneurs and business owners, ESOs, academic institutions, and anyone else who is willing to organize sessions. GEW FW is unique because of our distributed model that relies on the community to determine the content for the week as opposed to having a small group of people deciding the schedule. The result is that GEW FW offers content that is relevant and accessible as well as diverse – nearly 190 presenters participated during the week, half of whom were women and 30 percent of whom were BIPOC.
Innovating the Model
In addition to offering our first-ever hybrid event, we also launched our first Basecamp sponsored by HSC Next and located at 550 Bailey Avenue. A total of 45 sessions were attended by nearly 500 people on two floors that were completely transformed for GEW. The organizing team felt it was time to facilitate more entrepreneurial collisions by creating a space during each day of the week.
GEW Fort Worth 2022
Join us November 14 – 18 as we deliver on the promise of our mission: to catalyze the launch and growth of companies in Fort Worth and beyond by celebrating entrepreneurs and strengthening our ecosystem.
Head to the GEW Fort Worth YouTube channel to check out exciting and instructive video content from the week.