The Welcoming Center Salutes Herman Nyamunga for 10 Years of Service Supporting Entrepreneurs

After a decade of leading the Welcoming Center’s entrepreneurship program, Herman Nyamunga will be transitioning to a new role as a consultant focusing on entrepreneurial ecosystem building, supply chain solutions and global market access, and development of incubation and acceleration programs to foster innovation. His last day with the Welcoming Center will be on December 21, 2018.

Connecting neighborhood businesses to technology.

Since we our launched our entrepreneurship program, many talented people have contributed to the program, which has gained national and international recognition for our approach to working with both U.S.-born and immigrant entrepreneurs. A few of our key accomplishments, where Herman has been instrumental, include:
  • Organizing workshops, providing training, and one-on-one technical assistance to over 1500 entrepreneurs.
  • Providing strategic leadership in the planning and development of Philadelphia Immigrant Innovation Hub (to create diverse and inclusive co-working space to support immigrant startups) and the 52nd Street Micro Incubation Project (to support vendors transition from tables to formalized vending kiosks).
  • Collaborating with the Commerce Department, Health Department, Food Trust, and Fairmount Park Conservancy to promote businesses that provide healthy food. The projects include Phillygofresh, Free Tobacco Retail Initiative, Healthy Corner Store Initiative, and the Healthy Cart Initiative.
  • Organizing inclusive neighborhood business associations to help merchants enjoy economies of scale and promote vibrant commercial corridors (Woodland Avenue, 52nd St., Bustleton Avenue).
  • Recognizing the value immigrants and the broader international community bring to Philadelphia, the Welcoming Center developed strategies to help international businesses and local businesses access global markets. The Welcoming Center has launched a Global Soft Landing program, Global Startup Accelerator, and has been designated by the U.S. State Department as a sponsor organization for J-1 Exchange Visitor Trainees.

Receiving City Citation from Mayor Kenney at City Hall in 2016.

The Welcoming Center’s entrepreneurship program has greatly benefited from the value Herman has brought. As a Kenyan immigrant and an entrepreneur himself, Herman brought a unique set of skills and experience to our organization. In addition to transforming so many businesses, Herman’s impact includes training numerous staff, interns, and volunteers who carry on this important work to help promote inclusive economic growth by supporting entrepreneurs in collaboration with our partners and the public and private sectors in neighborhoods across our region. All of us at the Welcoming Center are grateful for Herman’s dedicated service and look forward to the next decade of expanding opportunities for entrepreneurs in our region.