Defy Ventures


Defy’s vision is to end mass incarceration and cycles of recidivism by using entrepreneurship as a tool to transform legacies and human potential.

Defy Ventures is an employment, entrepreneurship, and personal development training program that supports the incarcerated and formerly incarcerated to become successful, legal entrepreneurs and employees. We “transform the hustle” and maximize the potential of Entrepreneurs-in-Training (EITs) impacted by the criminal justice system by building redemptive communities that pursue entrepreneurship and personal growth.

Defy uses an “inside-out” model to deliver holistic support that begins while EITs are incarcerated and extends through their reentry into society. By offering intensive personal and leadership development support, competition-based entrepreneurship training, executive mentoring, and business incubation, Defy empowers EITs to become the CEOs of their new lives. Our programs harness and redirect the innate, entrepreneurial talents of EITs toward the creation of legitimate businesses and careers.

Defy addresses the limited access to education, skills training, and economic opportunity for men, women, and youth with criminal histories by creating empathy and providing hope, rigorous training, hands-on mentoring, community support, and a clear path to economic security through employment or entrepreneurship. By engaging top corporate executives, investors, and entrepreneurs as volunteers, Defy catalyzes personal and economic opportunities for EITs and shatters widely held perceptions of one of the most stigmatized and overlooked populations in America.

Defy serves EITs through our affiliate regions of Northern CaliforniaSouthern California,  Colorado, and the Tri-State region (NY, NJ, CT).