Friday, October 09, 2009

I just confirmed Wendy Norris (photo to left) will be with us this afternoon at the Denver IDEA Cafe. Wendy was the managing editor of the Colorado Independent, one of the first online newspapers in the country. She currently has a Knight Foundation grant and is researching new media. She'll share her startup experience and her perspective on the entrepreneurial opportunities that are available for journalists. There is an item about the meeting in the Denver Daily News today on p. 5, take a look, then pass it along to a friend. More info and RSVP at
Right after the IDEA Cafe, at 3:45 p.m. today (Fri, Oct 9) or any Friday we have a free, open meeting of the Denver Open Franklin Circle. At each meeting enough information is distributed to those attending that they can start a new Franklin Circle with their friends and business associates on a topic of their choice. For more information and to RSVP for this afternoon or future meetings, see

Thursday, October 08, 2009

  1. We have a great speaker tomorrow (Friday, Oct 9) at the Denver IDEA Cafe. Wendy Norris is one of the most knowledgeable and experienced journalists in the country regarding new media. If you or someone you know wants to turn your talent for writing and reporting into a business, join us!
  2. Have you thought about starting a peer advisory or master mind group with your friends and business associates? Join us any Friday for the Franklin Circle Denver Open group. You'll get enough information at the first meeting to start your own group over the weekend, or meet with us each Friday until you get your own group started. More info and RSVP at
  3. I'm meeting with Scott Heiferman, the founder of tonight (Thursday, Oct 8). Watch for improvements in my groups as a result of our meeting!
  4. Rocky Mountain Inventors Association  has asked me to be their Executive Director. If you already have experience with the group, or if you'd like to become involved, please contact me.
  5. It is possible that my work with RMIA (see #4 above) will result in me discontinuing my consulting practice. But for now, I'm still available to be of assistance to you as you start in a new direction with your career or business. If you might like help, contact me. But please, do it now. I'd hate for us to miss this opportunity. And I need the money! or (303)861-1447

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

October 6, 2009

Contact: John Wren cell (720)495-4949

University of Colorado Prof Speaks to Denver IDEA Cafe October 23.
Since 1994, free help for people starting a new career, project, campaign or new business.

DENVER—The Denver IDEA Cafe startup workshop meets from 2 to 3:30 p.m. each Friday at Panera Bread, 13th and Grant in Denver. More information and RSVP at or (303)861-1447.

Upcoming speakers:

Oct 9: Reporter, editor and entrepreneur Wendy Norris on journalism and her startup experience.

Oct 16: Author Joe Clark, a former Texas State Trooper, Joe owned a private investigation company for 15 years, now consults with people who are turning 65 about their retirement choices.

Oct 23: J. Brad Bernthal, Associate Clinical Professor of Law, Technology Policy, Entrepreneurial Law, University of Colorado Law School. Brad leads the Entrepreneurial Law Clinic (LAWS 7619) and the Samuelson-Glushko Technology Law & Policy Clinic (LAWS 7809). In addition to his clinical instruction, Brad teaches doctrinal courses in the areas of telecom policy, spectrum management, and entrepreneurial finance.

Prior to law school, Brad conducted legislative research as a staff assistant to United States Senator Robert Kerrey. Brad started his legal career in San Francisco with Brobeck, Phleger & Harrison LLP. He then returned to Denver where he practiced at Hogan & Hartson, LLP before most recently working for the Boulder law firm of Berg, Hill, Greenleaf and Ruscitti.

Since 1994, the Denver IDEA Cafe has been helping people who are starting in a new direction by providing a free forum where successful people share their startup experience and then brainstorm specific questions or problems.

IDEA is an acronym for: I= Inspiration or Identify the Problem; D= Develop Alternatives; E= Evaluate the Alternatives; and A= take Action. The meeting is free and open to anyone who is starting a new career, a new campaign or project, or a new business.


John S. Wren, MBA is the founder of the Denver IDEA Café, the Denver Startup Forum, and Franklin Circles. He is a business consultant and adult educator. Wren is also the new Executive Director of the Rocky Mountain Inventors Association

October 6, 2009

Contact:  John Wren cell (720)495-4949

Adult self-directed learning groups may have been Ben Franklin’s best idea, says John Wren.     

DENVER— Franklin Circle Denver Open Group, each Friday, 3:45 p.m. at Panera Bread, 1330 Grant, Denver. Free. More information and RSVP at or contact John Wren at (303)861-1447 or

In 1727, young Ben Franklin formed a group in Philadelphia for “the purpose of mutual improvement” as he puts it in his famous Autobiography. In 1996, inspired by Franklin, entrepreneur and long-time community activist John Wren formed the first Franklin Circle here in Denver, and he’s now actively working to spread the concept.

“I’ve conducted startup workshops and done consulting with small businesses for years,” said Wren. “This experience has convinced me there is a real need for these peer advisory groups for small business owners, entrepreneurs, and creative managers. The intention is to help people to start and grow their own business, and to help them become better citizens through active participation in local government and politics.”

Each group is autonomous, and those who are interested are invited to attend one of Wren’s free meetings. Help is then available to start or join a free or tuition-based group.


Attachment: What is a Franklin Circle?

John S. Wren, MBA   is the founder of the Denver IDEA Café, the Denver Startup Forum, and Franklin Circles. He is a business consultant and adult educator. Wren is also the new Executive Director of the Rocky Mountain Inventors Association

Sunday, October 04, 2009

About the Alumni Symposium yesterday:

Corey Ciocchetti spoke yesterday at the University of Denver luncheon. Prof. Ciocchetti told us why he walked away from a $120,000 per year job as a successful lawyer with a big firm to become a teacher, and the rewards he's found since he entered that new profession at DU.  He then gave a very inspirational talk about how we can each live our days to the maximum advantage for ourselves and others by being honest with ourself, living with integrity, and doing our best each day by keeping things in perspective as we hustle, fight for things that matter, listen, and laugh often through out the day.

I also attended sessions on spirituality and education, the rise and appeal of Islamic fundamentalism, and Lincoln and Colorado (there is a very good reason Lincoln Street runs right in front of the Capitol.)

It was a great day. I connected with old friends, made a few new ones, and got a lot to think about that will be influencing the topics for discussion for the next several weeks!