Our history

Prosperity for People & Places

The Virginia Community Economic Network (VCEN) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit education, networking and advocacy organization promoting innovative, creative and sustainable local entrepreneurship, placemaking, and social innovation strategies that spur job creation, increase wealth-building, and enhance community vitality. Originally founded in 1995 as the Virginia Microenterprise Network, the organization subsequently merged with the Community Economic Development Alliance of Virginia and was re-branded in 2013. 


VCEN is a convener, thought leader and advocate for expanding prosperity for Virginia's people and places. It has developed or catalyzed a number of new programs and initiatives to enhance the environment for community, economic and entrepreneurial development in an around Virginia. 

Annual Summits

VCEN holds Annual Summits in various parts of the state to foster greater connectivity among the Commonwealth's community economic and entrepreneurial development practitioners. These interactive learning conferences provide attendees with opportunities to engage with a variety of experts and policymakers, share best practices, and enjoy high-level professional networking.  


2016 (Petersburg)

Downtown Inc: The Business of Historic District Revitalization 


2015 (Richmond)

People. Place. Prosperity: The Shifting Landscape of Community Economic Opportunity in Virginia 


2014 (Roanoke)

SourceLink Virginia: Putting the Pieces Together for Entrepreneurial & Community Development