Defy Ventures

Defy’s mission is to shift mindsets to give people with criminal histories their best shot at a second chance. Our vision is to cut the recidivism rate in half by leveraging entrepreneurship to increase economic opportunity and transform lives.

About

Defy Ventures is a national nonprofit whose mission is to shift mindsets to give people with criminal histories their best shot at a second chance through entrepreneurship, career readiness, and personal development training programs delivered both in prison and in the community. Defy’s vision is to cut recidivism (return-to-prison) rates in half by leveraging entrepreneurship to increase economic opportunity and transform lives.

In 2022, Defy is helping currently and formerly incarcerated people defy the odds in eight states and 16 prisons across the country. Together with the thousands of business executives and leaders in our network, we are helping to shift the conversation and landscape of opportunity for people with criminal histories.

Services Provided

Develop ideas

  • Define products
  • Price products
  • Create business plan

Formalize structures

  • Register legally
  • Secure licenses
  • Buy insurance

Find financing

  • Establish accounts
  • Manage books
  • Analyze needs
  • Apply for a loan
  • Apply for a grant
  • Evaluate equity

Increase sales

  • Improve marketing
  • Establish online
  • Develop partners
  • Join accelerator

Optimize operations

  • Measure operations
  • Write handbook
  • Prep for wholesale

Hire / retain staff

  • Write job specs
  • Draft staff manual
  • Implement payroll

Capture wealth

  • Update pitch deck
  • Seek legal counsel
  • Plan for succession
  • Sell your business

Develop ideas

  • Create forecast
  • Establish goals

Increase sales

  • Update business plan
  • Update forecast

Capture wealth

  • Meet investors
Primary Contact
Melissa ODell
Address
111 W Jackson
Chicago, IL 60604