Innovative entrepreneurship program that helped more than 450 Westchester residents launch new ventures

The Westchester County Office of Economic Development today announced that Launch1000 is now accepting applications. Launch1000 is an innovative, fully remote, self-paced program designed to help aspiring business owners test their ideas and get their new ventures launched. Westchester County residents who are interested in participating in this year’s program are encouraged to apply today by visiting Priority will be given to first-time applicants.

Westchester County Executive George Latimer said: “Since 2020, more than 475 businesses and nonprofits have been born out of Launch1000. This innovative program offers education, mentorship, and networking to any Westchester County resident who aspires to start something new and create their own venture. We are incredibly proud to offer this program to residents and to see so many individuals realizing their dreams of becoming business owners and nonprofit founders.”

Born out of a global pandemic, Launch1000 offers Westchester County residents the opportunity to gain critical business knowledge, connect with mentors, and help their ideas gain traction. The program is led by entrepreneurial expert Pam Hoelzle, who has coached tens of thousands of early-stage entrepreneurs. Launch1000 requires a commitment of 7 to 10 hours per week and is designed for individuals who can commit to steadily working on their idea from April to September.  Westchester County Office of Economic Development also offers an ongoing program to support its Launch1000 alumni, which was delivered by WEDC and Ossining Innovates! in 2023. Details on the 2024 alumni program will be released soon.

A recent economic analysis of the Launch1000 program, conducted by Camoin Associates, found that graduates from the most recent class created 191 new jobs in Westchester. Further, their analysis of the impact of the 3 years of the Launch1000 program comprises ventures that generate more than 625 jobs, payroll of close to $30 million, revenues of close to $80 million, and ROI (return on investment) of $10.10 per dollar invested by the County.

Westchester County Director of Economic Development Bridget Gibbons said: “We are impressed by the diversity of the businesses that have emerged from Launch1000. This program is designed to help participants carefully vet and refine their ideas so that they have the greatest chance of succeeding, and we are delighted to offer this opportunity to more residents in 2024.”

Westchester County Director of Entrepreneurship and Innovation Deborah Novick said: “Without a clear roadmap and a network of resources, starting a business or nonprofit is unattainable for many Westchester County residents. We repeatedly hear from our Launch1000 alumni that the program provided not only valuable education and mentorship, but that it opened the door for building new networks, fostered collaboration among new businesses, and helped them to develop and test new business models and revenue streams. I encourage anyone who wants to create a new revenue stream to apply to this year’s program.”

Whether an individual is in the infancy of exploring an idea, hopes to create an avenue for working from home, aspires to create a business to support and improve their local community, or already has a concrete business concept, Launch1000 provides the tools to test ideas and move forward. It is also designed to support existing entrepreneurs who are looking to pivot an existing venture. As participants move through the phases of the program, they receive feedback and coaching from experienced entrepreneurs, as well as introductions to relevant organizations and individuals within the Westchester business community. The program is flexible and can be tailored around a participant’s schedule and desired work pace. It is open to residents anywhere in the County. To ensure that a lack of technology does not prevent anyone from applying to the program, the Westchester County Office of Economic Development will provide laptops, WiFi hotspots, and digital training to residents who need them.

To apply for Launch1000 and gain free resources to turn your big idea into a business or nonprofit, visit:

In addition to Launch1000, the Westchester County Office of Economic Development offers a suite of programs and resources to support businesses and entrepreneurs including Westchester County Biosciences Accelerator, Element 46 Tech Accelerator, and other programs.


The Westchester County Office of Economic Development works to improve the County’s economic well-being and quality of life.  This includes a broad range of activities to attract, create and retain jobs, and to foster a resilient, pro-growth, and inclusive economy. For information, visit