October Network Newsletter

Have you seen CEO in the news lately? Check out a few highlights from the past few weeks that feature the work of CEO communities across the states.

CEO Program Gets Updates

With CEO Program Students Began the Journey of a Lifetime

Sangamon County CEO Program makes an Appearance on Good Day Illinois

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Having started showing horses when she was just five years old, Jessica discovered at a young age that she loved dressing for success along the way.

“I always loved wearing something different,” Jessica remembers about her first few years competing in horse shows, “but horse show clothing is kind of expensive...I had some designers that were my idols, and I thought, hey, I could do something like that.”

So she did. And since then, it’s safe to say, Jessica has seen amazing success.

“Things in my business have totally changed since CEO,” states Jessica, ““When I got involved in CEO, I had a platform of people to ask questions. The networking has really been one of the biggest parts.”

Her work has begun to thrive so significantly, in fact, that the American State Horse Association is recognizing it, too. Jessica recently had the opportunity to showcase her show clothes in the Association’s main publication, the American State Horse Journal - a spotlight that promoted her work alongside that of one of her design idols, Trudy Black Label - a dream come true for this up and coming designer.

“It was great. They just emailed me through my business email and said, ‘we want to feature you in our main magazine. It’s a full page, and you don’t have to pay for it.’”

When thinking about how her time in CEO prepared her, Jessica has a lot to say. “If I hadn’t been in CEO, I don’t know that the Journal would have found me, and I don’t know that I would have reached back out to them… but after that ad, I was booked for 4 months straight - in the off season! ”

In the years following her time in CEO, Jessica’s learned, “just take every opportunity. There are so many different paths that you can take, and you should really explore all of them because you don’t know what’s going to happen.”

Visit Jessica’s Facebook page, DKJ Designs and Show Clothing, to learn more about her work and to see how she’s embracing this value every day - taking advantage of every opportunity, one design at a time.

Fostering an entrepreneurial mindset in an individual creates multiple positive outcomes- outcomes that we believe each of our CEO communities is accomplishing every day. While one of these results is individual success, the second is an undeniable impact on the individual’s community. The Center for Rural Entrepreneurship finds that entrepreneurship education...

  • Fosters more and better jobs for non-entrepreneurs.
  • Creates entrepreneurial spin-offs.
  • Increases economic activity creating opportunities for others.
  • Encourages more individuals to assume civic and social leadership.
  • Increases economic competitiveness, resilience and value added activities.
  • Expands local tax bases and revenues for schools, roads, parks and other public amenities.
  • Roots individual and community wealth that can support increased charitable giving.

Are you interested in researching more findings about how your work to promote entrepreneurship through CEO is impacting your community? Read more about it in the Center’s first book Energizing Entrepreneurs: Charting a Course for Rural Communities.

“Energizing your community's entrepreneurial talent is foundational...Growing rooted entrepreneurs and helping them achieve greater success will generate new wealth for them and your community.” -Don Macke, Center for Rural Entrepreneurship

The fear of making a wrong decision can certainly paralyze you...

In moments like these, it’s good to remember that precious little of life happens in a straight line. While it can be scary not knowing what’s coming next, it can also be a very good thing! The truth is - you can look backward from your current position in life, and the path to where you are makes perfect sense. It’s usually such a weird path that you could never suggest to someone else that they try and follow it.

It’s important to remember, though, that each experience in your life moves you a step closer to where you’re supposed to be. The key is to be a successful person. That’s the most critical and difficult thing. Successful people do successful things, and those things make a positive difference to the people around them.

If you can understand this perspective, you’ll gain the freedom to grow, explore, discover, and set yourself on a path that will turn the rest of your life into an exciting adventure.

Life Ain't No Laser Beam!

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