WASHINGTON, DC, Mon. Feb 14, 2022 — National Entrepreneurship Week (NatlEshipWeek), a congressionally chartered annual initiative, announces creative entrepreneur and critically acclaimed performer Norm Lewis as a keynote speaker.

Mr. Lewis is an Emmy, SAG, and Tony Award-nominated actor, singer and performing artist who has appeared in films, such as Spike Lee's "Da 5 Bloods" and on television in groundbreaking series such as ABC's Scandal and FX's Pose. He made history on Broadway as the first African-American Phantom in The Phantom of the Opera and has broken barriers through his performances in shows such as The Little Mermaid, Porgy and Bess and Les Misérables to name a few. But his star-studded career did not start out that way, listen as Mr. Lewis takes us on his own entrepreneurial journey from a career in newspaper classified advertising sales to becoming one of the world’s most sought-after performers.

“We are very excited to have Norm as a keynote speaker,” said National Entrepreneurship Week Co-Chair Joe Kapp. “Norm brings a unique perspective on entrepreneurship, perseverance and the power of passion. His role as a creative entrepreneur serves as an inspiration for anyone seeking to change careers and follow their creative passions,” Kapp said.

Lewis will be speaking on Thursday February 17 at 6:00pm EST. To register for the Everyday Entrepreneur Speaker Series, visit the link below.


About National Entrepreneurship Week

National Entrepreneurship Week democratizes entrepreneurship and is dedicated to celebrating and uplifting the diverse voices of entrepreneurship across the United States. The annual initiative was founded in 2006 through a bi-partisan congressional charter. National Entrepreneurship Week hosts a series of virtual events (February 14-18, 2022) that are open to the public and free to attend.

Local and state organizations and government agencies interested in joining the ecosystem, participating in the initiative, or listing events for a national audience may learn more at:


Since National Entrepreneurship Week's relaunch in 2017, Maui Business Brainstormers have contributed annually to the initiative's programming and social media outreach. MBB is a grassroots group founded in January 2012, based in the County of Maui. This entirely volunteer organization has one purpose: finding and creating ways to help local entrepreneurs and new and existing businesses thrive on their journey from the ground up (fostering self-sustainability and business growth).


Maui Business Brainstormers' 2022 NatlEshipWeek Program

Entrepreneurs, Startups, and the Booming Food Waste Business

Monday, February 14 | 10-11:30AM HST

The COVID-19 pandemic has created massive disruptions in the food system, from farm to fork - exacerbating an existing problem. In some cases, severe food shortages. In others, food in abundance cannot reach end consumers and is ultimately wasted (e.g. milk, produce, ...) Reports published by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations, show that more than one-third of the food produced annually, i.e., around 1.6 billion tons, is either wasted or lost. Americans waste nearly a pound of food per person per day.

Waste happens at every stage of the process, from farm fields—where food may be abandoned if a farmer has a surplus or the food has imperfections—to distribution centers, supermarkets, restaurants, food processing plants, and homes. Entrepreneurs and startups working on solutions to tackle food waste have being increasing. However, there's no one solution that will fix our food waste problem which has brought great minds together, synergistically involved. Hear from six guest panelists, six leading food waste innovators, as they share why and how they entered into the food waste solution and what the food waste brought to them.


Entrepreneur: Is TikTok for Your Business?

Tuesday, February 15 | 9:30 - 11:30 am HST

Many businesses still ignore TikTok, thinking it’s a fad or only for kids. Founded in 2016, TikTok has gained immense popularity over the last few years, with over 800 million monthly users in over 150 global markets. GenZers and Millennials as a form of entertainment during the COVID-19 pandemic. TikTok growth was enormous in the United States: 180 percent among 15-25 year old users. It was the most downloaded app globally in 2020. About one in six people in the United States is now a weekly user of TikTok. It has multi-generational viewership (parents, grandparents and children). GenZers and Millennials are also using it. Although TikTok initially gained notoriety for starting 15s viral dance trends, the social media platform has increasingly seen a rise of entrepreneurial influencers sharing their business wisdom with TikTok's 800 million active monthly users. Even if you are not thinking of using TikTok now (nor 'never'), we hope you can attend this workshop so you can find the answer to "Is TikTok for my business?"


Your Business' Cash: Where to stash, and when to flash, to avoid a crash?

Wednesday, February 16 | 9:00 - 10:30am HST

Cash flow is the life blood of every business. A business that has steady cash flow will always be in business. But at times, entrepreneurs get so caught up in managing their business that they forget to manage their cash flow. In this fun and informative 90-minute presentation, financial author and speaker Peter Bielagus will serve up simple tips and tricks that any entrepreneur can use to increase and manage cash flow. Participants will learn:

  • Where to “stash” your cash to get the best returns: opportunities beyond your local bank.

  • When to “flash” your cash: When and where is it okay to spend?

  • Avoid the “crash”: Remember, your business can crash even if the economy doesn’t. Learn how to protect yourself.


Surviving New (and Old) Challenges in 2022

Thursday, February 17 | 9:00 - 10:00am HST

A great deal has changed in our lives and businesses during the global pandemic. You can check this out on Google and learn from the 5,250,000,000 results, or come to this 1 hour presentation and learn about the most critical areas that impact your business. Whether you deal with products or services, a brick and mortar store, or e-commerce, small businesses can take advantage of simple technologies, trends, and new demands to succeed this year.

Question: What does your business need to stay afloat or grow in 2022? Answer: Finances, marketing, sales, and people, plus their underlying processes. These 4 elements have always been critical, but each has drastically changed in the last 2 years. Some of those changes are here to stay. The changes you should take advantage of will be highlighted. You'll hear answers to: What do you need to do more of, and what should you let go of, in order for your business to succeed? We will look beyond barely surviving to leading the way to more income, less burn-out, and sustainably thriving in these changing times.

  • NatlEshipWeek Team

National Entrepreneurship Week is a congressionally chartered, annual initiative that takes place the third week of February. A network of stakeholders, including entrepreneurial educators, ecosystem builders, and most importantly – individual entrepreneurs, come together to share resources, learn from each other, and share their support for America’s Entrepreneurial Ecosystem.

This year’s program takes place February 12-19, 2022. Recognizing that the United States’ entrepreneurship ecosystem is as rich and diverse as its population, the NatlEshipWeek team provides NatlEshipWeek Daily Themes to help stakeholders across the United States engage in programming representative of this diverse representation.

Check out NatlEshipWeek’s formal 2022 program below to register for their daily themed events. All events are free, virtual, and open to the public. We encourage you to share your support on social media using the hashtag #NatlEshipWeek and downloading our social tools at


Monday: Entrepreneurship Education Day | Individual Registration Links

1PM EST - Eship Edu in Higher Education: Register Here

Join NatlEshipWeek and the United States Association for Small Business and Entrepreneurship for an engaging discussion on the landscape of higher education entrepreneurship edu, best practices, and higher education's role in the entrepreneurship ecosystem.

2PM EST - Eship Edu in Community Colleges: Register Here

Join NatlEshipWeek and the National Association for Community College Entrepreneurship as we explore best practices for eship edu, the importance of eship to community college systems, and how community colleges are incubators of innovation in their communities.

3PM EST - Eship Edu: K-12 Connections: Register Here

Join NatlEshipWeek and the Consortium for Entrepreneurship Education to explore best practices in K-12 entrepreneurship education and its importance in the K-12 classroom.

4PM EST - Eship Edu: Beyond the Formal Classroom: Register Here

Join NatlEshipWeek and a panel of incredible guest speakers as we look at entrepreneurship education programs that exist outside of the traditional classroom. We'll hear from the educators that teach these programs, and the entrepreneurs that have been taught, in this impactful session.


Tuesday: Entrepreneurship Ecosystems Day | Register Here

1PM EST – Building Your Local Entrepreneurship Ecosystem

Hear from practitioners who have real world experience in the everyday work of building entrepreneurial ecosystems. This session will focus on practical steps that entrepreneur serving organizations can take to support efforts at building an engaging and diverse ecosystem.

2PM EST- Leveraging National Resources for Entrepreneurship Ecosystems

Support for entrepreneurs has been rising across the country. In this session, we will engage with leads in the movement who have leveraged the strength of national organizations to help build stronger entrepreneurial ecosystems through the country. 3PM EST – Policy & Capital: How Do We Make Ecosystems Healthier Through Research & Data?

Join ecosystem builders and researchers to explore three themes: ecosystem challenges, capital flow, and policy. This session will explore challenges in aggregating and disseminating data to help make ecosystems healthier, data and story-telling around capital flow and ecosystem practitioners, and how governments and agencies can better utilize data to support entrepreneurship ecosystems.


Wednesday: Federal Entrepreneurship Day | Register Here

9AM, 1:30PM EST – How to Get R&D Money for Your Business from the U.S. Federal Government

The U.S. government provides millions of dollars annually to stimulate innovation, entrepreneurship and commercialization in small businesses through the program known as the America’s Seed Fund. Known as the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs, these programs enable small businesses to explore their technological potential and provide the incentive to profit from its commercialization.

10AM EST- How the U.S. Government Fosters Entrepreneurship Education

Explore federally available education resources and programs that promote lifelong learning in entrepreneurship. This illuminating panel will highlight priorities in building an entrepreneurial pipeline and global competitiveness in K-12, community colleges, and higher education as well as educational resources for adult learners seeking to change careers. 11AM EST – How to Get Started: A Roadmap to Federal Resources for Every Entrepreneur

This dynamic panel will shine a spotlight on the resources and programs available to various types of entrepreneurs from across federal government agencies. Participants will hear from program managers about tools, tips, and tricks on how to leverage existing government resources to take their business to the next level.

12PM, 2:30PM EST – The Power of Partnership: Engaging Entrepreneurial Ecosystems

From non-profits to entrepreneurial incubators, there is a robust national and local network of partners available to support entrepreneurial development. Join us for a conversation on how federal agencies work with state and local ecosystem developers and governments to help drive entrepreneurship in communities across the country.

Virtual Reality Panel | Register Here

6PM EST – Future of Entrepreneurship in Virtual Reality and the Metaverse

Join NatlEshipWeek, the XR Association, The Aspen Institute Socrates Program, and the United States Small Business Administration for an informative panel on emergent technologies influence on entrepreneurship. Held in Altspace VR, this event is limited to 40 participants.


Thursday: Everyday Entrepreneur Speaker Series | Register Here

Join NatlEshipWeek for a series of interviews from 12:00 P.M. to 6:00 P.M. EST. Featuring quick, 15-minute interviews, the goal is to uplift the diverse stories of entrepreneurs across the country. Please note: schedule is subject to change.


Friday: Funding & Finance Friday | Register Here

12:00 PM EST – Funding Kick-Off with the Federal Government

The US government has an array of financial programs to support entrepreneurs and small businesses. Join representatives from the Small Business Administration, the Securities and Exchange Commission, and the US Treasury as they kick off Funding Friday this dynamic panel will detail an array of programs and resources to launch and grow a business by leveraging government resources.

1:00 PM EST – Bootstrapping: Your Money, Your Business

Whether you have little money or plan to use your own money, many entrepreneurs have used bootstrapping as a means for building a business. This panel explores how to grow a business with limited funding.

2:00 PM EST – Other People’s Money: Banking, Fintech, and Investors

Growing a business often requires obtaining outside capital which can range from borrowing to getting investors. This dynamic panel brings together traditional banking institutions, emerging financial technologies, and investors, coupled with entrepreneurs, who have accessed outside funding to grow a business. This interactive panel will explore timeless and timely ways of obtaining funding to start your business.

National Entrepreneurship Week was congressionally chartered in 2006 to take place annually the third week of February. It was relaunched in 2015 as NatlEshipWeek to engage communities across the United States. NatlEshipWeek 2021 will take place February 13-20 to engage a network of partners from Maui to Miami. For more information on NatlEshipWeek, visit


NatlEshipWeek Blog

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