Project Director, DC Women’s Business Center
Heidi Sheppard has extensive experience working to support economic development efforts ranging from entrepreneurial assistance to manufacturing communities to technology transfer. She served on the Partnership Team at the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) developing strategic partnerships with other federal agencies to further MEP’s mission. She led the Advanced Manufacturing Jobs and Innovation Challenge initiative, a five federal agency effort to grow and strengthen manufacturing industries in regional economies. While at MEP, Heidi went on a detail to the National Endowment for the Arts where she researched the value of industrial design for small and medium sized manufacturers and co-authored a report, “Industrial Design: A Competitive Edge for U. S. Manufacturing Success in the Global Economy”.
Prior to her work at MEP, she was the Senior Program Manager for the Maryland Incubator Program at the Maryland Technology Development Corporation (TEDCO). During that time, she was instrumental in expanding both the incubator assistance program and the network of incubator facilities.
Her economic development experience also includes working as the Director of the Loudoun County Small Business Development Center (SBDC) and as the Assistant Director of the Lafayette, Louisiana SBDC. There, she provided entrepreneurial assistance to start-up businesses, helping them to write business plans, obtain loans, and grow their small businesses.
Heidi is an artist, cook, and entrepreneur. She founded and operated her own manufacturing company- Endless Pastabilities- and has an MBA from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.