Madison Public Market Foundation, TruStage and supporters celebrate Equity Through Entrepreneurship, highlighting the first MPM Vendors

Media Release | February 20, 2024

Madison, WI — The Madison Public Market Foundation and TruStage hosted a special gathering on February 20, 5-7 p.m. at TruStage (5910 Mineral Point Road) to bring Public Market donors, volunteers, diverse vendors, local officials, and other supporters together in celebration of the Madison Public Market moving forward to a Spring 2025 opening. The first four confirmed vendors of the Public Market will provide a variety of multicultural fare and talk about their businesses with attendees. This is the first time the Madison Public Market Foundation has hosted a large gathering to highlight the initial confirmed vendors and experience the equity and cultural connection that the Public Market will offer.

“For two decades, thousands of people from across Madison have played an important role in shaping the vision and actively supporting the development of the Public Market. The Madison Public Market Foundation is grateful for the continued community commitment to the project, and we appreciate our partner TruStage for helping us make the Market a reality,” said Karen Crossley, Madison Public Market Foundation Board President.

TruStage, the Madison Public Market Foundation’s largest private donor, graciously agreed to host and sponsor the celebration. TruStage provided a foundational gift to support the creation of TruStage MarketReady Hall inside the Madison Public Market. The vision for TruStage MarketReady Hall is to reduce barriers to entrepreneurship through shared food production space and a community event hall. TruStage MarketReady Hall will provide affordable access to commercial food-processing equipment and culturally-relevant entrepreneurial trainings, where diverse entrepreneurs can grow their products.

“At TruStage we are committed to making a brighter financial future accessible to everyone,” said TruStage President and CEO, Terrance Williams. “Many entrepreneurs dream of scaling up their business but face insurmountable barriers when dealing with the high cost to access commercial kitchen facilities. The TruStage MarketReady Hall will help remove that barrier to entry and could help diverse founders who access the hall begin the journey of building generational wealth.”

The Madison Public Market Foundation will make two exciting announcements at 5:40pm. First, the Foundation will announce the hiring process for the Madison Public Market’s first Executive Director. This key position will lead the Madison Public Market to a successful opening and beyond. More information can be found at

Second, the Madison Public Market will unveil its new Equity Through Entrepreneurship Program to support new and early-stage diverse entrepreneurs who wish to be a permanent or temporary vendor within the Public Market. Learning from the highly successful MarketReady entrepreneurial training pilot program, the Equity Through Entrepreneurship Program will reduce barriers to entrepreneurship that underrepresented small businesses may face. Key components of the program include:

  • Invest in vendor selection in diverse communities 1) purchase paid advertisements in diverse and multicultural media 2) continue partnerships with diverse chamber of commerce organizations and other community partners
  • Decrease financial barriers 1) offer grants to provide rent subsidy during the first 12 months 2) offer grants to assist with build-out costs 3) establish a revolving loan fund
  • Connect entrepreneurs with resources 1) offer culturally relevant trainings and mentorship 2) provide translating services 3) create key operating technology systems within the Market that are easily accessible and support all vendors

By launching the Equity Through Entrepreneurship Program and concentrating on the success of small diverse businesses, more entrepreneurs will build their financial futures, and the variety of businesses, offerings, and price points within the Madison Public Market will enable people from all backgrounds and cultures to feel welcome, represented, and that they belong. To implement the Equity Through Entrepreneurship Program, the Madison Public Market must raise $1,000,000 by the end of 2024. Already $425,000 has been raised towards the goal.

“Madison’s Public Market will be a vibrant ecosystem for entrepreneurs and consumers. The lively sounds of music and conversations will resonate throughout the market. I look forward to seeing all the treasures of food and retail for all of Madison to experience.” - Mayra Medrano, Latino Chamber of Commerce

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