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Dear Endeavor Family, what an amazing journey! These past years have been fulfilling beyond words. I feel grateful and honored that 6 years ago I was at the “right time and the right place” to be selected to launch the first US affiliate of Endeavor together with our Founding Board and the support of all of you. One of the definitions of FAMILY is “a group of persons of common”, in this case our mission; and look at what we have built together. The greatest gift of this journey has been to be able to share it with you.
Thank you to the first believers, Matt Haggman and Peter Kellner, along with Fernando Fabre and members of Endeavor who brought together an amazing board of business leaders who also believed that this would happen. I’m extremely grateful to our founding co-chairs, Adriana Cisneros and Danny Echavarria, and each one of our Board Members. All these years I’ve experienced the importance of a trusted, supportive and aligned board. Without your trust, and truly unconditional support, through the ups and downs of this journey, Endeavor Miami wouldn’t be where it is today. DEAR BOARD, MY WARM THANK YOU.
This journey wouldn’t exist without the entrepreneurs. When I look back at the blog I posted after our first year and where we are today, I feel extremely grateful for all the entrepreneurs that have taken the leap of faith to join this family. I’ve led the way embracing the belief that Endeavor is first and foremost, for entrepreneurs and by entrepreneurs. I will cherish every meeting with each one of our founders, from selection to celebrating your successes and supporting the not so good times, as well as taking your tough feedback to make Endeavor better. Endeavor Entrepreneurs, I admire your passion and resilience, you are making a long lasting impact in our community and I feel privileged that you have allowed me to be part of your own journeys as well, you constantly inspire me. DEAR ENDEAVOR ENTREPRENEURS, MY HEARTFELT THANKS.
In addition, I feel honored to have counted with each one of the mentors that have donated their time to help entrepreneurs scale. I’ve learned so much from each one of you. I will treasure our conversations. TO ALL OUR MENTORS, THANK YOU for all your time (the most valuable resource). Also, I feel privileged to count on the contributions of each one of our individual donors and partners who have supported our mission: Alberto Ibargüen, Sam Gil, Matt Haggman, Raul Moas and the team who through Knight Foundation have supported not only the launch but also the next five years of growth; Mayor Francis Suarez and the City of Miami for believing in the relevance to support entrepreneurs to scale, Erin Sutherland and the Bank of America team for giving us an award to launch new programs and enhance our reach and services; and each one of the leaders of our corporate partners who are investing resources to support entrepreneurship and innovation. Your investment is having a tangible impact through the growth of our entrepreneurs. Also, thanks to the community leaders, who I now call friends, who have collaborated with us. TO ALL OUR PARTNERS, THANK YOU for believing and supporting this ride. Finally, a special shout-out and THANKS TO MY SUPER #DREAMTEAM. Thanks for your passion; it has been a treat to work with you. I’m very proud of your work. Know that I couldn’t have made it to the finish line without you.
Last week, I took a course at Harvard Business School, “The Reflective Leader”, which pushes our thinking and feelings to find our authenticity in the way we lead. In that context, I’d like to share that during this Endeavor journey, among other things, I’ve confirmed the importance of being able to align our personal values to the mission of our organizations. I feel so lucky that I’ve passionately believed in the mission of Endeavor and that it is aligned with my own values. I also learned that during the most challenging times what kept me going was reflecting on the importance of our core mission and when I felt that things were not going as expected, I realized it was because I was missing that alignment. My personal “why” has been the belief that through Endeavor, we are contributing to the future of all of our kids, especially for me, my beautiful and passionate daughters. Although I don’t express it enough, the support of my family has been an essential part of my drive and accomplishments. Thank you to my forever and unconditional husband, Juanjo, and to my girls, Valeria, Lucia and Natalia. Today, MY WISH FOR ALL LEADERS OUT THERE IS THAT YOU CAN FIND THE SAME FUEL I’VE HAD THESE PAST YEARS IN THE ABILITY TO BE ALIGNED TO YOUR VALUES AND FIND PURPOSE TO DRIVE THE MISSION OF YOUR OWN ORGANIZATIONS.
It’s been a privilege to be part of this FAMILY that’s always evolving and challenging us to raise the bar. Linda Rottenberg and her Endeavor global team, the global and local mentors, Board Members, Endeavor Entrepreneurs and each one of the Managing Directors and teams around the world, lead with passion to continue to drive the growth of the only global organization that supports entrepreneurs at scale and that actually manages to be global and act local.
I take with me every single conversation I’ve had during this journey with the members of this family and how much fun we’ve had along the way too! I’M TRULY INSPIRED BY EACH ONE OF YOU AND I WILL TREASURE EVERY MOMENT.
An important part of every journey is to know when to step down. This is my time and I can’t wait to see what the next years of impact will bring under the leadership of Claudia Durán, our new Managing Director. I’m looking forward to continue to support the mission of Endeavor in a different way. As we say in this family,
Once Endeavor, Forever Endeavor, Laura
Thank you, Endeavor Family!
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