The Maine Center for Entrepreneurial Development celebrated its 20th anniversary Wednesday night with the unveiling of a new name and logo.
The organization, founded in 1997 to help train entrepreneurs, will change its name to the Maine Center for Entrepreneurs.
While a small change, it shifts the emphasis from an action — entrepreneurial development — to the actual entrepreneurs the organization was founded to support, according to Sean Wilkinson, who along with his business partner Arielle Walrath, were hired to lead the nonprofit organization through the rebranding exercise. Wilkinson and Walrath are the co-founders of Might & Main, a Portland-based branding and design firm.
Tom Rainey, who took over as executive director of what is now the Maine Center for Entrepreneurs in September 2016, said the organization was in need of a fresh look. In addition to the organization itself, its cornerstone entrepreneurial training program, Top Gun, will also receive a branding reboot, Rainey said.
“I hear they’re making a new Top Gun movie, so it’s probably time,” he said, adding though that it won’t happen until after the 2018 Top Gun cohort has completed the program.
This is not the first time the organization now known as the Maine Center for Entrepreneurs has changed its name. It originally launched in 1997 as the Maine Center for Enterprise Development. Don Gooding, Rainey’s predecessor, changed the name to the Maine Center for Entrepreneurial Development in 2011.