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Jon Atkinson is an expert in start-ups, customer development methodologies and entrepreneurial finance. His diverse experience combines knowledge as a professional investor and ‘recovering’ banker with skills gained as a professor, CEO, CFO, business advisor, board member and strategic consultant to deliver unique business insights in guiding and financing growth oriented companies. Currently, Atkinson serves as CEO of the Idea Village a 501c3, non-profit organization whose mission is to identify support and retain entrepreneurial talent in New Orleans and the surrounding region. In this role he runs a selective accelerator program focused on growth-oriented, innovative, businesses and co-produces New Orleans Entrepreneur Week (NOEW). He was previously the founding Director for the Loyola University Center for Entrepreneurship and Community Development and a Visiting Assistant Professor of Management and Entrepreneurship at Loyola University New Orleans. Atkinson is also a co-founder and the Fund Administrator Lagniappe Angels, LLC a group of early stage angel investors that invest in start-ups in the gulf region. He has previously taught finance classes at Tulane, is the original founder of the Changemaker Institute at Tulane and was an early steering committee member and accelerator consultant for Propeller: A Force for Social Innovation. Additionally, he has served in a variety of leadership roles for community organizations in the New Orleans area and holds an MBA is Strategic Management and Entrepreneurship from Tulane University.