Challenge & Triumph

Stories of Impact from Oregon Entrepreneurs Network

Oregon is a community-minded place. We have communities of tiny house enthusiasts, gemstone alchemists, PUG lovers, and naked bike riders.

At OEN, we believe in community. We believe that a thriving network of entrepreneurs makes Oregon stronger.

When entrepreneurs move to Oregon from other startup hubs, they are amazed by the friendly, open, supportive nature of the OEN network. They are amazed that they can ask for help—and get it.

We are a state brimming with ideas. Bone marrow ice cream? Cloud cost management? Organic lube? Anti-malarial drugs? MMA gloves for women? Yes, please!

Not only do we have great ideas, we also have the gall—or optimism?—to try to see them through. We celebrate each other’s successes and guide each other through the tough times. Because yes, there will be tough times.

We know that being an entrepreneur is not easy; we also know it’s that much harder if you try to go it alone. But don’t take our word for it—a 2009 study commissioned by the Ford Foundation and written by Patricia Scruggs revealed that entrepreneurs who have access to mentorship, strategic capital, and robust networks are twice as likely to grow revenues and receive additional funding than entrepreneurs who don’t.

The entrepreneurs featured below have all wrestled with vulnerability, self-doubt, and fear. But throughout the roller coaster ride, the OEN community has been there to educate, support, and inspire them to success.

And what’s at stake? These entrepreneurs are solving vexing problems. They are creating jobs, furthering careers, and supporting families. They are inspiring future generations. They are putting Oregon on the map as a destination for anyone looking to start and scale a business.

We hope these stories will inspire you to join us on the journeys of many more entrepreneurs to come—and perhaps to embark on your own!

Meet our entrepreneurs

Emma Mcilroy, Wildfang
Eric Winquist, Jama Software
Paige Hendrix Buckner, ClientJoy
Claudia Jaffe, Lumencor

Creative Lead: Niya Christine | Videography: Shanti Martin, Freedom Street Studios | Photography: Shanti Martin, Niya Christine, Edis Jurcys | Content & Design: David McLaughlin 

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