About Us

The Learners Lab Foundation (TLLF) was formed nearly a decade ago to more directly empower and propel the business operations of its 501c peers that it was able to achieve merely as its parent LLCs from volunteerism. Having begun in the 70’s, startups and small businesses have always been the source of its Founders volunteer work, in fact it led to her incorporation as a Sol Prop. But she also had a knack for seeing patterns which revealed how consistently 501c Startups, Entrepreneurs & Tax-Exempt Small Businesses were being ignored and underserved even though they were legally registered business concerns, a legitimate segment of the Small Business Market.

Attempts at aligning with other entities didn’t work, attempt at partnerships didn’t work. Even starting her own tax exempt in 2002 didn’t work, yet her Sol Prop which was operating as a for profit was having the same opportunities and resources thrown at her. So she began using her Sol Prop to run her volunteer-turned-charitable operations, which met she could offer many services and resources free or for pennies dollars on the dollar. This included small $1 lending from her own resources to help cover operations, 1099 payments, stipends and other nominal costs in advance of incoming grants/donations or other revenue sources. At the same time she was having absolutely no success in her decades long efforts to establish lending services for her 501c startups & small businesses with the banks and credit unions of her for profit clients/customers. So she decided to start her own.

The Foundation originally positioned itself as a workforce training fiscal sponsorship public charity providing the full compliment of economic development, career training, intern training, small business mentorship, small dollar lending and channel connections to the business assets otherwise denied to the startup market it serves. An original component of this work included media, banking and myriad other resource supports. But 188 requests about her open fiscal sponsorship was totally unexpected, was also a clear sign she (a) needed a great deal of help and (b) had to figure out what how to do it, since she was one person operating as the charitable version of several government agencies. After several years of planning aided by everyone’s reduced capacity thanks to 2017, the 2018 Federal Shutdown, then COVID, The Foundations restructure, reorganization and expansion has completed Phase 1 of that process, kicking Phase II into high gear.

The 501c Federal Credit Union, along with a National Chamber, Founders Association, a Solutions Development/Delivery Impact Forum, a Mentors Council, and Startup2Small Business Market Exchange, Business Market Exchange are part of what that original economic development/fiscal sponsorship has morphed into.

We can’t wait to get these new charities staffed and resume the work of propelling self-sufficiency for 501c Startups, Entrepreneurs and the Tax-Exempt Small Business, leading by example all the way.