Marty Mechtenberg

South Bend – Elkhart Regional Partnership director earns fellowship

Marty Mechtenberg of the South Bend – Elkhart Regional Partnership landed a spot in the inaugural cohort of the Make Startups Executive Fellowship Program.

The program was made possible by a $50,000 grant from the Ecosystem Builder Leadership Network Field Advancement Fund in November. Mechtenberg, the director of entrepreneurship ecosystem, is one of 18 participants in the first cohort.

“Marty’s focus is on building the South Bend-Elkhart region’s entrepreneurial ecosystem into a robust and supportive environment for growth and innovation,” said Bethany Hartley, president and CEO of the South Bend – Elkhart Regional Partnership, in a press release. “We are ecstatic he was selected as an inaugural MSEF executive fellow and cannot wait to see the impact this will have on our region.”

Mechtenberg joined the partnership in 2023 and worked as the economic empowerment specialist at the city of South Bend before that.

The fellowship is an intense six-month commitment that includes in-person sessions, online training, one-on-one advising, peer coaching and field building. It focuses on three pillars: sustainable ecosystem building; inclusive entrepreneurial training, support and connections; and long-term economic impact.

“We are confident this initiative will equip leaders in our field with the tools and resources they need to make a lasting impact for entrepreneurs and their local ecosystems,” said Grace Belangia, co-founder of Make Startups. “We are truly excited to launch the Make Startups Executive Fellowship program this spring with plans to scale in the fall of 2024.”

The South Bend – Elkhart Regional Partnership is a collaboration of the economic leaders in 47 communities in Northern Indiana and Southwest Michigan.

Caption: Marty Mechtenberg (Provided by the South Bend – Elkhart Regional Partnership)


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