Season 1, Episode 11

IVMF: Supporting Your Entrepreneurial Dreams
with Anna Blanch Rabe
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You can tune in to the With Pride & Grit podcast on your preferred podcast platform or watch the videocast on Youtube.

Meet our Guest: 

Anna Blanch Rabe is Program Manager, Entrepreneurship and Small Business at the D’Aniello Institute for Veterans and Military Families (IVMF), at Syracuse University. Anna’s work focuses on the Center of Excellence for Veteran Entrepreneurship (COE), and the Coalition for Veteran Owned Business (CVOB).

Prior to joining the IVMF in 2023, Anna, a lawyer and academic researcher by training, operated Anna Blanch Rabe & Associates, a communications consultancy serving Law firms and socially responsible businesses. She brought together her training as a lawyer, her experience teaching writing and editing, and her years leading organizations and companies to make legalese easy to understand, empower community builders, and share meaningful stories. She worked with clients across North America, Europe, and Australia as a location-independent company. Since 2021, she has increasingly turned her attention to investing in social impact companies that are changing the world by addressing well-articulated problems in innovative ways.

Anna also previously worked in higher education, serving as an adjunct professor, instructor of record, graduate teaching assistant or tutor for Park University, University of Newcastle (Australia), University of St Andrews (Scotland), and Baylor University. Between 2019 and 2023, she also taught Boots to Business workshops on behalf of the IVMF and Syracuse to participants in 9 countries.

Anna is also involved with local community organizations and advocates for thoughtful community development. She has previously served on the MOAA Currently serving Spouse Council. Previously, she was the Executive Director for a 501(c)(3) regional children’s services non-profit. As part of this work, she served as a member of the National Court Appointed Special Advocates Association Legal and Advocacy Committee, the New Mexico CASA Network, and local Child Abuse task forces. As a member of the rule change committee of the Military Spouse J.D. Network, she is proud to have advocated for attorney licensing accommodations for military spouses stationed around the US – in particular, the eight-year-long effort toward licensing accommodations in New Mexico, which the NM Supreme Court finally accepted in 2022.

Anna has spoken at Conferences and Festivals across the US, Europe, and Australia, including TEDx, MLA, CCL, CNMAC, WordPress WordCamps, Greenbelt Festival, British Association of Victorian Literature, Vetted Strategy & Success Summit, V-WISE, Military Influencer Conference, Hiring our Heroes Amplify and Transition Summits and Rotary International, and at universities including Cambridge, Glasgow, Notre Dame, and Baylor. She’s had scholarly & freelance articles published in varied publications, including Huffington Post, Englewood Review, Forbes,, Reserve and Guard Magazine, Immerse Journal, Military Spouse Magazine, NextGen Milspouse, Case Magazine, and Journal of Inkling Studies. She has also been a guest on dozens of podcasts and radio shows.

An Australian Army veteran, Anna is also a proud United States Air Force Spouse.  Having previously served as a USAF Key Spouse Mentor, Anna was honored to be named the 2018 49th Operations Group Key Spouse of the Year, & 2018 Joan Orr Award for the USAF Air Combat Command, and a two-time recipient of the AFI Military Spouse of the Year, in 2016 for Cannon AFB & 2018 for Holloman AFB.

Blanch Rabe is a graduate of the Australian National University (B.A.(First Class Honours), & LLB) and the Graduate School at Baylor University (M.A.). She is also a Ph.D. candidate (ABD) of the University of New England, Australia.

Show Notes:
In this episode of With Pride & Grit, Jen is joined by Anna Blanch Rabe from the D’Aniello Institute for Veterans and Military Families (IVMF) at Syracuse University. Anna shares her insights on the programs that support entrepreneurship for military spouses, veterans, and family members. She emphasizes the importance of having a voice as a spouse within the organization and community and highlights the power of entrepreneurship in creating a future separate from a spouse’s military career. 
Throughout the conversation, Anna emphasizes the need to combine passion and skill set when pursuing entrepreneurship. She shares her own journey as an Australian Army veteran and a law graduate, navigating licensing portability challenges and ultimately starting a communications consulting company.
Anna highlights the various programs offered by IVMF, including the renowned Entrepreneur Boot Camp for Veterans (EBV) and the unique Boots to Business program, which she now teaches. She emphasizes the high-quality curriculum and valuable learning experiences provided to participants, and the importance of creating a supportive community of military-connected individuals.

We all have this weird intersection of our skills...Maybe you have a specific passion, but you can combine it with your background or your skill set...that's kind of where the magic is for entrepreneurship when you're the best person for that thing.

While the average [small] business owner in the US has about a 50% chance of going out of business in the first two years. A military-connected business owner, on the other hand, has an 80% chance of being in business after five years.

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Pride & Grit is a Trademark of Hinshaw Consulting Group, Inc 2018© and Pride & Grit Consulting, LLC. 2022© All rights reserved.