Military entrepreneurship summit


From service to success -- entrepreneurship resources for the military community

Event agenda    Speaker biographies     Contact us

Are you a veteran, military spouse, service member, or member of the military community in the National Capital region who wants to learn more about starting or growing your own business? Join the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), in collaboration with the Small Business Administration (SBA), on Monday, April 22, from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. ET virtually or in person at USPTO headquarters in Alexandria, Virginia, to learn the fundamentals of entrepreneurship and to get connected to the resources and tools to help you succeed. From honing your business plan and protecting your brand and ideas, to market analysis and financing, we've got every angle of entrepreneurship covered.

In addition to panel discussions on entrepreneurship, the summit will include opportunities for audience Q&A and a resource fair with exhibitors from local entrepreneurship support organizations.

This event is free and open to military spouses, veterans, service members, military family members, and Department of Defense civilians. It will be available via livestream and in person.


(Subject to change. All times ET)

8:30–9 a.m. Resource fair and networking (in person only)

9–9:30 a.m. Opening remarks

  • Gina M. Raimondo, Secretary of Commerce, Department of Commerce (recorded)
  • Derrick Brent, Deputy Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Deputy Director of the USPTO
  • Dilawar Syed, Deputy Administrator, SBA
  • Ashish S. Vazirani, Performing the Duties of Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness, Department of Defense (DOD)

9:30–10 a.m. Intro to entrepreneurship resources and service organizations

  • Patricia Barron, Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Military Community and Family Policy, Department of Defense (DOD)
  • Derrick Brent, Deputy Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Deputy Director of the USPTO
  • Barbara E. Carson, Managing Director of Programs and Services, D'Aniello Institute for Veterans and Military Families
  • Don Miller, Program Director and Senior Business Counselor, Old Dominion University Veteran's Business Outreach Center (VBOC)
  • Fred Steckler, Chief Administrative Officer, USPTO (moderator)

10–10:15 a.m. Break/resource fair

10:15–11 a.m. Breakout session 1 – Fireside chat with entrepreneurs

11–11:10 a.m. Break/Transition

11:10–11:55 a.m. Breakout session 2 – Next steps with subject matter experts

  • Track 1: Access to capital
  • Track 2: IP fundamentals

11:55 a.m.– noon Closing remarks

  • Kathi Vidal, Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the USPTO (recorded)

Noon–12:30 p.m. Resource fair and networking (in person only)

Speaker biographies


Contact us  

For questions about this event, email

To learn more about resources for the military community, please visit the USPTO's military outreach page.

Accessibility accommodation


If you are an individual with a disability and would like to request a reasonable accommodation, please submit your request to the contact information listed above.

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This event is part of a series: Military Community