I’m going to level with you. I’ve never really been too sure about what the deal was with Bull City Forward. BCF sprang up at a time when it seemed like every five minutes there was a new super-niche website with a focus on what was going on in Durham. In fact, it got so crowded that I put a fledgling ExitEvent on hold while I went and did other things until, legend has it, a joke brought it back to life one year ago.
It’s not that I don’t “like” Bull City Forward, I think it’s awesome. All the people I’ve met there have been fantastic, I’m totally behind its mission — to enable entrepreneurs to create positive change — I mean, who isn’t behind that (evil entrepreneurs, that’s who). And Jon Leonardo, who is now working with them, is not only one of the nicest guys I know but also one of the hardest working.
I used to believe that the reason I never got Bull City Forward is that I never got social entrepreneurship, the do-gooder offshoot of startups. Again, don’t picture me as the penultimate capitalist, I’ve always been a proponent of the argument that bootstrap and slow growth is much preferable to idiots in hoodies.
But to me, a mission of enabling entrepreneurs to create positive change is not social entrepreneurism, it’s entrepreneurism — minus porn startups, nuclear missile startups, and Klout. I’ve always thought the distinction to be superfluous.
Now I’m thinking that maybe the reason I don’t get it is because I don’t know anything about it. And go figure, because this is why I do 99% of what I do. I’m not much of a reader (I know, right?), I’m more of a doer.
So here’s a serendipitous opportunity for me — and you — to learn a little bit more about what social entrepreneurship, and Bull City Forward, are about. They’ll lure you in with free beer, you question whether your entrepreneurial pursuits are socially responsible and whether they should and could be.
I assure you, it’s not all happy people sitting around and wondering if we can’t build a laser that would end world hunger. Tonight’s meetup is hosted by 8 Rivers Capital (an investor) and iContact (a former startup founded half by the extremely socially responsible Ryan Allis), and features beer from Harpoon Brewery, and startups Berst, who are getting a good deal of practice prepping the pitch for TSF demo day, and Haiti Hub, who teaches Haitian Creole as a conduit to opening more doors for Haitian aid.
Register here. And if you can’t make it tonight, they’ve got two more coming up in June and July.