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27 Individuals Invited to Participate in NOLAbound Program to Showcase New Orleans as Center of Entrepreneurship and Innovation

NOLAbound Cohort Is a Diverse Group of Influencers From Around the Country (January 24, 2012)

NEW ORLEANS, LA -- (Marketwire) -- 01/24/12 -- Today, The Downtown Development District of New Orleans, Greater New Orleans, Inc., and The Idea Village are excited to introduce the 27 individuals who have been selected to visit New Orleans and participate in the NOLAbound program in March 2012. These key influencers will be given unfiltered access to the people, companies and movements shaping the "New" New Orleans as a way to assess the city's emergence as a model of innovation and entrepreneurship.

"We have been thrilled with the overwhelming interest and response to NOLAbound," said NOLAbound spokesperson Curry Smith. "The NOLAbound cohort truly represents a tremendous cross-section of innovators, entrepreneurs and influencers from around the country -- all of whom desire to help push New Orleans forward as a magnet for today's best and brightest minds."

Chosen from a pool of nearly 200 applicants within the arts-based business, bioscience, digital media, and sustainable industries, all NOLAbound participants were selected based on industry expertise, the size and relevance of members' social media or online audiences, and individual stature within a particular field. The diversity and expertise of the group is exemplified by the following:

  • Participants currently live in a total of 11 different states and 2 countries;
  • Together, the class touches nearly 60,000 unique followers online.

Complete biographies for each selected participant are available at

From Wednesday March 14th to Sunday March 18th, these 27 individuals will be given complete access to the city and the forces reshaping New Orleans as Inc. magazine's "Coolest Startup City in America." Participants will meet with business and community leaders, as well as visit the companies and sites driving change in each of the four relevant sectors, including the new 66,000 square foot New Orleans BioInnovation Center.

The program is aligned with the fourth annual New Orleans Entrepreneur Week, an event that connects national venture capital firms and investors, leading corporations, and MBA students from around the country with local innovators, entrepreneurs and startups.

All participants will be asked to share their observations about -- and insights into -- New Orleans and its entrepreneurial community through the NOLAbound website and via their own social media networks. The entire five-day program will be filmed, and a documentary will premiere in October 2012.

The project is made possible with generous funding from the U.S. Economic Development Administration.

For more information on NOLAbound or to track the program as it unfolds, please visit NOLAbound can also be found on Twitter @benolabound and on

About NOLAbound
NOLAbound is a joint project of the Downtown Development District, Greater New Orleans, Inc., and The Idea Village. NOLAbound is made possible with generous funding from the U.S. Department of Commerce, Economic Development Administration. This unique, all-expenses-paid program will find 25 individuals to experience, document, and share their unfiltered impressions of New Orleans as an entrepreneurial epicenter. This bold program will focus on professionals within four industry sectors: arts-based businesses, biosciences, digital media, and sustainable industries, and will leverage the power of social media to both gather applicants and enable them to share their experiences in New Orleans. Timed to coincide with the 4th annual New Orleans Entrepreneur Week, NOLAbound will give participants the opportunity to interact with the people, culture, and businesses in New Orleans that are driving its growing reputation as a center of entrepreneurial excellence. The entire one-of-a-kind experience will be documented on film.

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