Founder, SourceLink / Vice Provost and Executive Director, UMKC Innovation Center
Maria is passionate about working collaboratively to build entrepreneurial communities. She heads the University of Missouri – Kansas City Innovation Center that supports thousands of community members every year in starting and growing businesses. Maria has developed a number of new resources for entrepreneurs in the Kansas City region including KCSourceLink, a network of 240+ resources in the region that help small businesses start and grow, Whiteboard2Boardroom, a program that connects research innovations to entrepreneurs, and Digital Sandbox KC, a proof of concept center. She leads efforts to make Kansas City America’s most entrepreneurial city.
From Seattle to San Juan, her team at SourceLink has helped communities build better environments for entrepreneurs through methods and technologies that bring people together and measure success. She, along with co-author Kate Pope Hodel, has written about that experience in a book, Beyond Collisions: How to Build your Entrepreneurial Infrastructure.