In 2014, it was estimated that 13% of the U.S. population was foreign-born, for a total of more than 40 million people. Many immigrants come to America seeking a better life for themselves, and their children. Many flee from poverty, violence, and oppression.

Approximately 52% of Silicon Valley start-ups were founded by immigrants, which has increased from a quarter of a decade ago. The Economist notes that in all, a quarter of America’s science and technology start-ups, generating $52 billion and employing 450,000 people, have had somebody born abroad as their CEO or chief technology officer. In 2006, foreign nationals were named as inventors or co-inventors in a quarter of American patent applications, up from 7.6% in 1998.

And the culture of entrepreneurship remains vibrant and alive in the Hispanic and immigrant communities today.

In its 2014 report, “How Hispanic Entrepreneurs Are Beating Expectations and Bolstering the U.S. Economy,” The Partnership for a New American Economy and the Latino Donor Collaborative stated that the number of Hispanic entrepreneurs in America has grown exponentially over the past two decades. Hispanic immigrants, in particular, are now more likely to be entrepreneurs than the average member of the U.S. population.

The report’s key findings include:

In recent decades, the number of Hispanic entrepreneurs has grown exponentially. From 1990-to 2012, the number of Hispanic entrepreneurs in America more than tripled, going from 577,000 to more than 2.0 million.
Hispanic immigrants, particularly those from Mexico, played a key role in this growth. Between 1990 and 2012, the number of Hispanic immigrant entrepreneurs more than quadrupled, going from 321,000 to 1.4 million. At the same time, the number of self-employed Mexican immigrants grew by a factor of 5.4, reaching 765,000. Entrepreneurship became so established among Mexican immigrants that by 2012 more than one in 10 such immigrants was an entrepreneur.

There are far more Hispanic entrepreneurs today than expected. In 2012 the rate of Hispanic-American entrepreneurship was more than one whole percentage point higher than we would expect based on factors like population growth, language proficiency, and family structure. Hispanic immigrants overcame obstacles that hinder entrepreneurship at even greater rates: Among that population, the entrepreneurship rate was 2.1 percentage points higher than expected, resulting in an estimated 251,000 additional entrepreneurs in 2012.

Hispanic immigrants now have higher entrepreneurship rates than the U.S. population overall. While 10.2 percent of the U.S. population was entrepreneurs in 2010, 11.0 percent of Hispanic immigrants were. By 2012, that gap had widened to 10.0 percent and 11.7 percent, respectively.
You can support immigrants by:

Contact your local representative and let them know that Las Cruces should be a welcoming city to all people.

Getting involved in local government and nonprofit organizations and advocating for immigrant rights.

Staying informed about how national legislation on immigration policy affects our community.

For more information on the political and economic impacts of immigrants in the state of New Mexico, please click the following link: