Our Equity in Entrepreneurship students are benefitting from a diverse pool of expertise in our amazing mentor team.  Our next Mentor Spotlight shines on Dr. Diana M. Hechavarria , an Associate Professor of Entrepreneurship at the University of South Florida (USF).

The majority of her work focuses on examining startup outcomes from a gender lens in nascent (early stage)  entrepreneurship. She is also interested in examining gender dynamics in nascent social entrepreneurship and cultures of entrepreneurial ecosystems. Diana’s research has been featured at various conferences and symposiums, such as the Academy of Management, the International Council for Small Business, the United States Association for Small Business and Entrepreneurship, the Babson College Entrepreneurship Research Conference and the DIANA International Research Conference.

Her research has been published in journals such as Journal of Business Ethics, Entrepreneurship Theory & Practice, Small Business Economics, and International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behavior & Research. Recently, Diana won USF’s Women in Leadership & Philanthropy’s Dr. Kathleen Moore Faculty Excellence award for her emerging research on women’s entrepreneurship in the Tampa Bay entrepreneurial ecosystem. She was also recognized by the USF’s Status of Latinos Presidential Advisory Committee (SoL) in 2017 and 2018 for her burgeoning research in minority entrepreneurship and presented the SoL Faculty Award and Hispanic Pathways Award.

Diana has been involved in the coordination and analysis of the Panel Study of Entrepreneurial Dynamics (PSED) and the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) research programs in the United States, two of the most comprehensive national and international studies on the state of entrepreneurship. She also worked on harmonizing and disseminating the data records of the GEM studies for public use on the University of Michigan’s International Consortium for Political and Social Research (ICPSR) website. Furthermore, she has contributed to several national reports on the state of entrepreneurship in the United States and Australia using GEM data.

Diana serves on the board of various non-profit organizations like the Children’s Home Society Suncoast and The Frank and Ellen Daveler Entrepreneurship Program. She is also an active member of The Junior League of Tampa. She currently serves as the Chair for the Mobile Interactive Literacy Opportunity community project and is slated to serve on the Executive non-profit of The Junior League of Tampa as Strategic Director for the 2020-2021 League year. She also volunteers her time in the Tampa community as a member of The Heart Gallery of Tampa’s Outreach Committee, and the Kiwanis Club of Tampa.

Diana is a first generation Cuban American, and the first in her family to graduate college. She has a Ph.D. in Business Administration from University of Cincinnati (Cincinnati, OH, USA), a M.A. in Liberal Studies from Florida International University (Miami, FL, USA), and a B.A. in Sociology from University of Florida (Gainesville, FL, USA).

We’re excited to have Diana aboard the Equity in Entrepreneurship mentor team and know that our early stage entrepreneurs will really benefit from her experience and expertise.

The Equity in Entrepreneurship program is a collaborative effort of AMRoC Fab Lab, Grow to Greatness Ventures and the Small Business Development Center.