SENO Rebrands as Propeller: A Force For Social Innovation

Social Entrepreneurs of New Orleans (SENO) produced a well-attended gala last Thursday with many of their fellows and mentors in attendance.

I personally missed the gala (my sister has awful child-birthing timing), but reports from Julia and many others indicate that it was a great event.

Leslie Jacobs was the honorary chair and called the talent of the SENO fellows “inspiring and contagious.”

Andrea Chen spoke about the impact SENO has had on social entrepreneurs, the return on their investment in the community, and about the opening of their new physical space: HUB New Orleans.

The biggest announcement of the event though was that SENO is getting a new name and undergoing a complete re-branding. The new name selected is, “Propeller” and the new website (launching soon) will be at

I can understand the decision to change the name. “SENO” on it’s own doesn’t mean anything to most people, and “Social Entrepreneurs of New Orleans” is a mouthful. The name change could also indicate that the group wants to expand beyond New Orleans to work with social entrepreneurship on a broader geographic scale.

I can’t say that I’m smitten with the new name. As a child of the airline industry, I’ve been taught from an early age to stay as far away from propellers as possible. My mother told us stories of what happens to those who walked too close at the wrong time, and the airlines frequently showed employees gruesome training videos to the same effect.

I’ll go out on a limb though and say that most people would first associate propellers with forward movement, and that’s the idea they were undoubtedly going for. My apologies to readers for all of the mental imagery I just provided.

Outside of my personal word associations, we all know that in the world of web 2.0, start-ups, accelerator programs, and everything else buzzword laden, selecting a name is hard. Finding a name with a decent domain name to go with it is even harder.

I sincerely hope that when SENO completes the full transition over to Propeller, it helps to propel their work to the next level and that their entrepreneurs continue to have a significant impact on the social problems in our world.