The World Has Changed, Time to Retool Your Business

During this period of adjustment to working remotely, ActivateNM powered by CNM Ingenuity is hosting a Startup Retool series for small businesses and startups in New Mexico to digitize their businesses.

In this series, local entrepreneurs and resource providers will share strategies and platforms to retool small businesses. If you are a small business or startup, this is a networking event that will help you learn how to grow and engage with customers online.

These networking sessions on the 3rd Thursday of every month online. See upcoming session and to RSVP, please see below or visit our events calendar.

FINDING A STARTUP CO-FOUNDER (and maintaining a good relationship)

Thursday, August 20, 2020 | 10:30 AM – Noon

In this session, we will hear from business owners Charles Ashley of Cultivating Coders and Mike Silva of Rudeboy Cookies on how they found their startup team and how they continue to grow their connections and collaborations. We will also hear from the African American Greater Albuquerque Chamber of Commerce about resources for small businesses and startups. Then, we will break out into virtual networking tables where people can connect and share opportunities to collaborate on initiatives to grow our economy in New Mexico.

Schedule Format

Highlighted Startup Founders


Charles Ashley III is President & Founder of Cultivating Coders, a New Mexico based company that provides technical training and curriculum in web and mobile application development to K-12 schools in tribal, rural and overlooked urban areas that lack resources in coding and computer science education. Prior to his current role, Charles was a Marketing & Strategy Consultant for several clients including Harmonix Technologies, VARA Wines, and DeVry University. He previously served as Film Liaison & Marketing Manager for Bernalillo County’s Economic Development Department in New Mexico and was Manager of Marketing for CNM’s STEMulus Center. Charles currently sits on the US Eagle Federal Credit Union Advisory Board, Learning Alliance, and has served on a variety of boards such as New Mexico AIDS Services, Albuquerque Youth Basketball League Board, Mayor Berry’s Albuquerque Deep Dive Council for Arts & Culture and Mayor Keller’s Education Transition Team. 

Mike Silva, CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER, Rudeboy Cookies

Michael M. Silva, Jr. has 30 + years of hospitality & tourism industry
experience. Michael is skilled across several disciplines within the
industry, having worked in hotel sales, food & beverage operations,
destination sales, restaurant management, and not-for-profit
management. In 2007 Michael found his entrepreneurial drive and co-founded, ABQ Trolley Co., now a sub-company of the newly named parent
company, Albuquerque Tourism & Sightseeing Factory. AT&SF is the parent company of four companies. These companies are:

In 2014, Michael founded, Rude Boy Cookies. Rude Boy Cookies is
a sweet shop serving fresh baked cookies, ice cream and milk on tap.
Michael is a fiercely proud Burqueno, a frequent speaker across the
city on entrepreneurship and philanthropy and serves on many
boards, to include:

In 2019, The 20th Annual New Mexico Ethics in Business Awards
named Michael the winner of the award for Individual Excellence in
Ethical Business Practice. Michael holds a bachelor’s degree in Political Science from the University of New Mexico. In his free time, Michael enjoys Lobo basketball, playing music (saxophone and drums), and spending time
with friends and family. Michael has been married for 16 years, has
one daughter and a dog.

Recording of the session can be found here

Highlighted Resource Provider

The African American Chamber has a purpose to promote economic growth of black-owned businesses with a focus on education, advocacy, mentorship and networking.

Tables are set for virtual networking August 20, 2020 RSVP HERE

Upcoming Events

September 17, 2020 – HOW TO MAKE MONEY WITH YOUR BUSINESS DATA (and be ethical too)

October 15, 2020 – HOW TO DO PAID ADS (and not waste money)

November 19, 2020 – HOW TO SELL MY SMALL BUSINESS (or get acquired)

Be sure to check out our events calendar for upcoming startup training and networking events.