“Iowa is on Fire!” It was a nice message to get in the middle of last week from someone who knows technology startups much better than I do and resides on the West Coast. Plenty more followers within the technology culture have been turning their attention to Des Moines these past few weeks.
It wasn’t just Ashton Kutcher’s new support of Dwolla, many more events have been reshaping our home state’s technology landscape. The first week of April kicked off with a visit from United States CIO Steven VanRoekel visiting Startup City Des Moines and Iowa State University for talks with local entrepreneurs. The next week led to the announcement of Kutcher investing into Dwolla, as news spread of Des Moines native Ben Silbermann’s startup Pinterest becoming the 3rd largest social media platform behind only Facebook & Twitter.
The Technology Association of Iowa hosted its first TriTECHta on April 11-12th, which was capped off with the i2iowa Conference and a keynote speech from Scott Case, CEO of the Startup America Partnership. It was Case’s 3rd visit here within the last 5 months (extremely significant, as his time is in a bit of demand right now!). All three events over the TriTECHta were held at Vets Auditorium downtown, bringing in investors and technology strategists from various states. Most anyone (even our local crowd) in attendance at the Prometheus Awards last Wednesday came out impressed by the level of success being achieved from Iowa’s companies on a worldwide stage right now.
All of this may bring a new level of expectation upon us. When I hear we’re on fire, I know it means we’re creating an impact and bringing the next wave of change. Let’s keep it going.