Developing a Creative Economy - U of I Extension

Developing a Creative Economy

Presented by Pam Schallhorn, Community and Economic Development Educator, University of Illinois Extension

Thursday, March 14, 2019 at Noon CST

How can community leaders expand economic and entrepreneurial development by fostering a culture that appreciates and supports the creative talents of residents, including those living in low-resource households? Creative entrepreneurs include artists, designers, musicians, boutique retailers, specialty food producers, and other creative enterprises. The webinar will cover how a community can and should expand its economic development efforts by focusing on developing new businesses from local talent by creating and supporting start-ups and informal grassroots, “micro-activities.”  Accessing new markets and distribution channels allows creative entrepreneurs to test their markets while providing a unique shopping experience for consumers, increased opportunities for local tourism, and revenue generation for both the business and the community.

Pam Schallhorn is a Community and Economic Development Educator for University of Illinois Extension in Bond, Clinton, Jefferson, Marion, and Washington counties. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Finance and Economics, and a Master’s degree in Political Studies.  Pam's responsibilities include assessing, developing and teaching community and economic development programs while working closely with stakeholders, community leaders, economic development professionals and the general public.  Her teaching and research interests include:  creative entrepreneurship; downtown and neighborhood development; poverty alleviation; community planning; and cultural awareness. In 2009, as an Illinois Small Business Development Center Director, she began working with creative entrepreneurs in Rockford, Illinois.  She designed a business course specifically for the creative entrepreneur, Creating the Creative Business which she taught in both Rockford and Chicago.  In Rockford, she assisted dozens of creative enterprises to start-up or expand, and played an integral role in developing the Rockford City Market which hosts 60,000 visitors each summer.  In 2015, Pam’s research evolved into an Illinois Extension program called Developing the Creative Economy that focuses on ways communities, including those in rural areas, can tap into local creative talent to expand their economic development strategies. She recently finished designing a companion four-part community-planning model specifically for communities interested in developing their own creative economy.

There is no cost to attend the webinar; REGISTRATION required. Contact Nancy Ouedraogo at for more information.


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This a statewide event.