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Sunday, October 2, 2022
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Mayor Johnson Announces Inaugural ‘Entrepreneur-in-Residence’


Dallas Mayor Eric Johnson names Pinnacle Group CEO Nina Vaca as the City of Dallas inaugural Entrepreneur-in-Residence. | Image from Eric Johnson Facebook

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The City of Dallas’ inaugural ‘Entrepreneur-in-Residence’ was named Nina Vaca by Mayor Eric Johnson. Vaca is the CEO of the Dallas-based Pinnacle Group.

Becoming the City of Dallas’ inaugural Entrepreneur-in-Residence will allow Vaca to “provide advice and counsel to the Mayor and promote Dallas as an international magnet for innovation and entrepreneurship,” a press release explained.  

Naming Vaca into this new role accomplishes the Mayor’s Task Force on Innovation and Entrepreneurship recommendation introduced earlier this year. Johnson approved this recommendation to “improve the startup environment in Dallas,” the press release mentioned.   

Mayor Eric Johnson stated, “As a Dallas-based leader for 25 years, Nina Vaca has demonstrated the business prowess and the commitment to entrepreneurship that make her the ideal choice to represent our city’s entrepreneurial community.”

He added, “I have no doubt that as our first-ever Entrepreneur-in-Residence, she will offer incredible insight to our city government and to our aspiring and diverse community of startup leaders. Together, with Nina’s help, we can ensure Dallas takes its rightful place as an internationally recognized and inclusive hub for innovation and entrepreneurship.” 

The press release said that Nina Vaca will “leverage her entrepreneurial skillset to bring a fresh perspective to showcasing the city’s unique business ecosystem and the opportunities it offers.” 

This position represents the commitment the City of Dallas and Mayor Johnson hold to support startups and entrepreneurs. Vaca will guide them with new ideas on how to “better serve the entrepreneurial community.”  

According to the press release, Vaca stated, “Pinnacle Group is living proof that Dallas is a great place to start and run a scalable, sustainable, high-growth business,” and added, “There has never been a greater need nor better opportunity for innovative, agile entrepreneurs to make Dallas their home. As Dallas’s first Entrepreneur-in-Residence, I am committed to advancing Dallas as a leader in this area to attract, retain, and support more startup companies.”  

In 1996 from Nina Vaca’s Dallas apartment, she founded Pinnacle Group. After twenty-five years in business, her Dallas-based Pinnacle Group became “an award-winning global workforce solutions provider and a pillar of the Dallas business community,” the press release stated.   

The new global headquarters for Pinnacle Group is on North Central Expressway, demonstrating proof of their success and how Dallas will continue to support the growth of all entrepreneurs and their businesses.  

Mandy Price, Co-Founder, and CEO of Kanarys and co-chair of the Mayor’s Task Force stated, “One of our city’s strengths is our many talented entrepreneurs, which is why the Entrepreneur-in-Residence is a critical component of the roadmap we laid out for the Mayor’s Task Force on Innovation and Entrepreneurship.”

She continued, “It’s an incredible honor to have Nina Vaca join our efforts, and as a female entrepreneur and a woman of color, she knows firsthand the challenges we need to address in order to ensure Dallas is one of the top cities for underrepresented entrepreneurs, especially women and people of color. Nina is a true pioneer that has blazed a trail for women in Dallas and around the country. I am confident that Nina and her entrepreneurial mindset, along with her vast expertise, will help us achieve our goals and make Dallas the strongest hub for innovation and entrepreneurship.”  

Trey Bowles is the Chairman Emeritus of The DEC Network and co-chair of the Mayor’s Task Force on Innovation and Entrepreneurship.

“The announcement today of a newly appointed Entrepreneurship-in-Residence is an important move in the beginning to implement the Entrepreneurial Liaison recommendation of the Mayor’s Task Force on Innovation and Entrepreneurship Report,” said Bowles.

“With the announcement of Nina Vaca in this role, we are able to leverage the experience, expertise, and reputation of one of the number one entrepreneurs in the world. Nina has been a part of the PAGE (Presidential Ambassadors for Global Entrepreneurship) program created by President Obama, and she is a perfect example of a leading lady in entrepreneurship,” he said.

Bowles continued, “She is an example of why Mayor Johnson has committed that Dallas will become the number one city in the world for women entrepreneurs. The Mayor’s Task Force on Innovation and Entrepreneurship recommendations are in good hands under the guidance, counsel, and leadership of Nina Vaca.”

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