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Wayne Brown Institute changes its name

The Wayne Brown Institute has re-branded itself and will now be known primarily as is a 30-year-old nonprofit that seeks to connect entrepreneurs in the technology industry to venture and angel investors.

The group was named for its founder Wayne Brown, a dean at the University of Utah College of Engineering, in 1988. The institute changed the name in February  to more clearly illustrate its purpose, said Jennifer Meyer, chief operations officer at, which is based in Utah. The Wayne Brown Institute owned’s URL.

Brown was once a pioneer in the area of entrepreneurship funding and his name carried a lot of weight, said Meyer.

“But so much time has passed no one knows his name anymore,” she said. “Especially in Utah, the community is so competitive as far as groups assisting entrepreneurs. Wayne Brown Institute doesn’t stand out or explain what we do. We knew that Venture Capital would.”

Jennifer Meyer

Jennifer Meyer

Today, nonprofit works to pair entrepreneurs with investment firms such as Deutsche, Silicon Valley Bank and Ernst and Young, and offers free classes to aspiring entrepreneurs that culminate with the opportunity to pitch to investors.  makes its money from donations and membership fees.



About Benton Alexander Smith

Benton Alexander Smith is a reporter for the Idaho Business Review, covering the Idaho Legislature, new business, technology and financial services.