Our Mission

Our mission is to prepare entrepreneurs for true success through experiential entrepreneurship and spiritual development training.

OUR VISION

Our vision is committed to equipping youth and adult innovators and entrepreneurs to become the small business owners of tomorrow.

The Outcome

Learning the principles of entrepreneurship, biblical marketplace principles and
business practices, integrated
with the actual process of creating
an enterprise, develops:

  • Godly character and biblical business wisdom
  • Life skills and critical thinking skills
  • Free-market participation
  • Positive self-concept and personal motivation
  • Teamwork skills
  • Presentation and public speaking skills
Entrenuity Annual Report

Entrenuity Annual Report

2019

Today more than ever, many ethnic minorities, women and returning citizens are driven to achieve financial success for themselves and their community. Entrenuity provides underrepresented entrepreneurs an environment to work, learn and grow.

This year marks the 20-year milestone of God's faithfulness to Entrenuity!

Click HERE for downloadable PDF.

 

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Our Team

The Founder

L. Brian Jenkins, MA

L. Brian Jenkins, Founder and President of Entrenuity, NFP, and StartingUp BusinessSolutions, Inc., has successfully provided entrepreneurship education, training and small business development for over 20 years in Chicago, nationally, and abroad.

Under Brian’s leadership, both organizations have successfully launched businesses that have generated over millions of dollars in revenue and helped countless entrepreneurs with their business plan development. Brian has led entrepreneurship training workshops for teachers and youth workers and is directly responsible for training thousands of urban young people in the fundamentals of entrepreneurship and financial literacy, in addition to teaching character/integrity based business operations.

In 2016, Brian launched mox.E, a co-work space and business incubator dedicated to coaching, connecting and capitalizing, particularly minority entrepreneurs. Mox.E’s mission is to build a strong business-focused community that supports ethnic diversity and fosters the spirit of entrepreneurial collaboration for success.

Brian has served as adjunct faculty at Moody Bible Institute, Illinois State University’s College of Business, The Urban Ministry Institute inWichita, KS and at North Park University’s School of Adult Learning, focusing on entrepreneurship education. He is a graduate of the University of Iowa with dual Bachelor of Arts degrees in English and Religion. Additionally, he earned his Masters of Arts in Theology from Wheaton College Graduate School and is the author of StartingUp Now: 24 Steps to Launch Your Own Business. Brian has been married for 22 years to Dr. Jenai Jenkins and they’ve been blessed with 3 children: Bria (20), Braxton (17), and Brooke (9). Brian and his family live in the Austin Community on Chicago’s west side.

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Consultant

Adam H. Phillips

Consultant

Adam H. Phillips


Adam Phillips is an advocate, innovator, developer, content-creator, and change-manager. He’s an experienced leader and savvy writer with the ability to explain complex topics to wide audiences. He has a B.A. in Psychology from Wheaton College, an M.A. in American History from George Mason University and a Doctor of Law from George Mason University.

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Cafe Manager - The Common Cup

John Pendleton

Cafe Manager - The Common Cup

John Pendleton


John Pendleton, an Alabama native, has spent the last 10 years in Chicago. Though the majority of his career has been in education, John joined the coffee world and soon rose to management. When the opportunity came to join Entrenuity’s coffee division, he couldn’t resist. Passionate about coffee, leadership and people, John continues to improve the coffee experience at The Common Cup for staff and customers alike.

 

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Mox.E Collaborative

Josh Fort

Mox.E Collaborative

Josh Fort


Josh has built his life around doing work that matters. He spends much of his time consulting on social impact projects through the social enterprise, Zeal Inspirational. An alumni of Praxis Labs' Emerging Founders program, Josh is passionate about redemptive entrepreneurship and actively devotes time to support it. He holds a B.A. in Philosophy-Rhetoric from Wheaton College, IL and grew his expertise in tackling business challenges as an Associate Consultant with Brandtrust.

Extremely passionate about giving back to those around him, Josh serves as an Associate with the Mox.E Angel Collaborative. When he’s not serving clients or his community, he can be found exploring Chicago, studying computer science, and diving into the latest superhero series.

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Coffee Director

Kari Pendleton

Coffee Director

Kari Pendleton


Self-proclaimed coffee nerd and introvert Kari Pendelton was born on the South Side of Chicago, but grew up in Scotland, where she developed both a love for coffee and a passion for baking. Over the years, Kari developed a strong conviction that love for people should drive passion for product and a work ethic that includes intentionally seeking ways to do good. Kari brought that conviction and work ethic to Entrenuity as Overflow Coffee Bar's new Manager. With over 10 years in the coffee industry and quality training directly from Ipsento Coffee, Kari's excited to present Overflow's specialty coffee at its very best. Entrenuity's also excited to help her launch Bakes by Kari and feature her baked goods at Overflow. Using only the best, all-natural ingredients, Kari loves the process of seeing individual, raw ingredients become whole, beautiful creations that help people celebrate the small and big moments in life.


 

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Mox.E Collaborative

Mark King

Mox.E Collaborative

Mark King


Mark W. King has spent 30 years providing financing for entrepreneurs. He started his career in international micro-enterprise lending and urban economic development. For the last 20 years Mark has been investing in venture capital backed companies in a variety of industries. Most recently, Mark was Managing Director and Co-Head of Ares Venture Finance where he invested primarily in growth stage technology companies.

Mark holds a B.A., cum laude, from Wheaton College in Political Science and an M.B.A. from Northwestern University’s Kellogg School in Marketing, Entrepreneurship and Non-profit Strategy. He is also a CFA® charter holder. 

Mark is the lucky husband of Tina, proud father of three teenage boys, and wrangler of two Mini Goldendoodles--all of whom share his love of Chicago and Door County, Wisconsin and patiently tolerate his passion for podcasting and Chicago blues. 

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Operations Manager

Randi Craigen

Operations Manager

Randi Craigen


Randi Craigen has over 20 years experience in multiple administrative settings and serves as Operations Manager for Entrenuity, StartingUp Now and Overflow Coffee Bar. Randi attended Grace College in Winona Lake, IN where she studied English & Biblical Studies. Randi is married to Clive Craigen and they have 4 children. Randi is also an entrepreneur and creates custom jewelry which can be viewed at Randi Lee Jewelry. Randi can be reached at randi.craigen@entrenuity.com.

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Producer/Videographer

Scott Parker

Producer/Videographer

Scott Parker


Scott Parker, CEO/Writer/Producer for Change Media Group has conducted film-making workshops and produced/directed over 20 short films with children, volunteers and youth. His cliets include the MacArthur Foundation, northwestern University, university of Chicago, MoodyPublishing, Lawndale Community Development Corporation, Breakthrough Urban Ministries and more.

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Consultant

Vicki Kim

Consultant

Vicki Kim


Vicki Kim's love for cooking and entertaining started from an early age, but she didn’t think to make it a career until her mid-20’s. Vicki was working in corporate consulting when her brother, Chef Edward Kim, decided to partner on creating a restaurant. In 2010, Chef Kim and his wife, Jenny, along with Vicki, and their friend Nate Chung opened their first restaurant, Ruxbin (named one of America's Top 10 Best New Restaurants by Bon Appetit and GQ Magazines), in Chicago’s Wicker Park neighborhood. Three years later, they opened their second concept, Mott St (named one of America's Top 50 Best New Restaurants by Bon Appetit), a more casual restaurant that showcases family-style fare in a relaxed environment. Most recently, they opened Mini Mott, a counter service dining spot in the Logan Square neighborhood of Chicago, centered around their nationally recognized Mott St. burger (named #1 Burger in Chicago and #7 in America by Thrillist). 

Vicki knows that running a restaurant is a balancing act of great business skills and warm hospitality. She likes to build and platform businesses--especially restaurants and community. She joins the Entrenuity team as a Restaurant Consultant and Business Coach for our food industry entrepreneurs.

 

 

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Administrative Assistant

Liv Roskos-Peterson

Administrative Assistant

Liv Roskos-Peterson


Olivia Roskos is a creative teaching artist with a background in Communications from Moody Bible Institute. Olivia has worked with a number of youth programs (Grip Outreach for Youth, The Miracle Center, After School Matters) in Chicago developing and directing multimedia performances in Chicago. A jack of all trades, Olivia has experience in writing and developing scripts and multi-media productions, managing music and restaurant events in Chicago, working with fashion and costume design for theatrical productions, and helping kick start music events throughout the city. Most recently, Olivia has worked with Legacy Leaders International in helping develop a Leadership Development Arts Program at North-Grand High School that focuses on entrepreneurship through the arts. She is currently working on building her own business as a vocalist and violinist and is passionate about creating spaces and events to showcase female artist entrepreneurs in Chicago.


 

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Financial Consultant:

Lyman Howell

Financial Consultant:

Lyman Howell


Lyman is the President of Regal Oak Financial, LLC, helping clients to achieve their financial goals. He is the President of the U.S. Board of World Renew, a non-profit organization that fights global poverty with approaches that include income generation. He has formally led a non-profit organization that consulted nationally to promote financial literacy. He has worked with others to mobilize small or micro businesses in the United States and in other countries. He has a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Northwestern University and an MBA in Finance and Marketing from the University of Chicago.

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Creatve Director:

Kathyjo Varco

Creatve Director:

Kathyjo Varco


Kathyjo Varco operates as  full service Graphic Design Shop, offering complete Creative Brand Development, Brand Strategy, and effective Tactical Execution for clients of all sizes. She has 17 years experience in the realm of Marketing with a concentration in Brand Development, On/Off Premise Promotions, POP/POS development, Print, Pre-press Production and web-based applications.

As Sr. Art Director for Upshot Marketing, she was given the opportunity to use her energy and enthusiasm for effective print and web design with local and national brands including, Absolut Vodka, Herbal Essence, P&G, Disney Properties, Cover Girl, Sony and Coca-Cola.

As a freelance designer, she's provided Brand Identity Development, Creative Direction, as well as graphic execution for the likes of Clairs, Luxcon, Varco Windows & Doors, Starting Up Now Business Solutions, Brilliant Pet, Lucky Litter, UMI, Nita’s Gumbo, and most recently mox.E, Chicago's South Loop co-work sharing space.

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Bookkeeping Consultant:

Wendy Daniels

Bookkeeping Consultant:

Wendy Daniels


Wendy Daniels has been a Bookkeeping Consultant since 1997, specializing in Quickbooks and Quickbooks Online and is a Certified Quickbooks Online Pro-Advisor. She also has extensive knowledge of both Microsoft Excel and Word. Wendy provides bookkeeping services for both for-profit and non-profit organizations through her businesss, Books by Wendy, Inc. She has a BA in Rhetoric and an MA in English, both from the University of Illinois at Urbana.

Wendy and her family have lived in Oak Park, IL for the past 24 years. She has been an active member of the Oak Park community via her local church, PTO membership and offices, as well as serving on high school committees. She believes in action following discussion, and is pro-active in problem-solving personally and professionally.

 


Our Sponsors

Entrenuity appreciates the generous support of our partners. We are grateful for the meaningful relationships we have and thank them for their valuable wisdom, leadership and technical support.