Meet Expert in Residence Amy Nelson

Entrepreneur, Lawyer, Writer, Founder of The Riveter

We’re thrilled to welcome Amy as an Expert in Residence! Find out more at

Amy Nelson smiles for the camera from her home office.
Hosted by Amy Nelson on May 20, 2024 at 11 AM PT/2 PM ET


11 AM PT / 2 PM ET

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Ten Questions with Expert in Residence Amy Nelson

How did you get started in entrepreneurship?

I pivoted from a ten year career as a lawyer to start my first company, The Riveter, in 2017.

What makes you tick?

I love building things and solving big challenges. As both a lawyer and an entrepreneur, I find so much energy and joy in figuring out how to approach new problems in small, impactful steps. I basically see the world as a big logic puzzle.

What does an average day in your entrepreneurial life look like?

Every day is completely different! However, I start each day with “deep” work — my brain is best in the morning so I dive in first with the work that requires the most deep thought. I wake up early and get that in before my four daughters wake up. After I get the kids off to school, I spend an hour on “logistical tasks.” I tend to work on meetings or “live events” in the afternoons. I travel a lot for my work, so this tends to shift a lot.

Amy Nelson looks into the camera with a slight smile, wearing a black sleeveless blouse and arms crossed.

What are your areas of expertise?

I am a storyteller. I believe in the power of stories to build ideas, sell things, and find “stakeholders.” I’ve used this skill to create multiple companies from ideas, raise $30 million in venture capital, land a column in Forbes, launch an iHeart podcast, and sell millions in products.

What are you looking forward to most in your residence with the SPI Pro community? How specifically do you want to help entrepreneurs?

I’m so excited to help connect entrepreneurs with the skills I love to share! I also want to open my network to them in any way I can.

Why did you join the Entrepreneur in Residence program? What is it about Pro that makes it a special place/community for entrepreneurs?

I am so excited to connect with a group of people building cool things — of all sizes. Entrepreneurship can be really lonely and connection can truly change the game.

What is your biggest professional challenge to date, and how did you overcome it?

My biggest professional challenge to date came down in March 2020, when the pandemic led to nationwide shutdowns — bringing my business of coworking and events to a halt. I had to reframe my perception of everything and redefine both my idea of success and my idea of my business. I overcame it by tackling things in very small pieces, particularly when everything felt way too big to deal with at once. This is my general framework for tackling all big things in life: break it down into very small and manageable pieces.

What is your biggest professional win to date and what did you do to make it happen?

This is a great question. A long time ago, I would have said raising $30 million to build The Riveter because women so rarely overcome that hurdle. However, now I think it is the fact that I found a way to dismantle the business I wanted to build — and did build! — and re-envision the company as something else. We have to learn to be flexible with our dreams.