Note: The Skinny blog is written by Rick Smith, editor and co-founder of WRAL Tech Wire and business editor of

RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, N.C. – If you are an entrepreneur and want to get off your chest concerns about how the government is hampering your dreams and business, you had best try to register today to attend the Obama Administration’s “Startup America” roundtable on Thursday.

The N.C. Biotech Center is the site for the first of a planned nationwide series of events where Obama and Small Business Administration officials will gather to hear what startup business owners have to say.

Unfortunately, the Biotech Center auditorium only has room for around 150 to 160 people, and a good number of spots are already reserved, according to an SBA spokesperson in Charlotte.

Plus, in order to attend, the SBA has to review your request to see if you qualify.

Some heavy hitters will be in RTP for the event, which begins with registration at 8:30 a.m. and is scheduled to run to noon.

Among them are:

  • Michael Fitzpatrick, associate administrator in the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs at the Office of Management and Budget
  • Ronnie Chatterji, senior economist on the President’s Council of Economic Advisors
  • Esther Vassar, the national ombudsman for the SBA

If you want to attend, send an e-mail to:

As WRAL Tech Wire has noted before, one of the initiative’s biggest supporters is Ping Fu, CEO at RTP-based Geomagic.

These meetings in eight cities are designed to solicit feedback from entrepreneurs about opportunities and obstacles in starting new businesses.

The second stop is scheduled for Austin, Texas on March 12.

Other cities and areas on the tour, with dates still to be determined are: Boston, Silicon Valley, Pittsburg, Minneapolis and Boulder, Colo.

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