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Joel Calderon


Workforce innovator

Joel Calderon  

Age: 29

Title: Founder & CEO

Organization:  MFGWorx Inc.

Joel Calderon’s parents came to the United States as immigrants, and their first jobs were working for minimum wage in factories in Chicago. He grew up on the South Side of Chicago for a good portion of his life, then moved to Somonauk, a small town an hour to the southwest, which was a big culture shock.

Financially his family always struggled, and they left the city due to dangerous experiences, but his parents always taught him to put his head down and create his own path.

Calderon spent more than six years doing talent acquisition and human resources in manufacturing, and he found himself in a position to offer opportunities to people. It was a full circle because he was helping people in the same position his parents were in when they arrived in the United States.

To expand those opportunities, he founded MFGWorx, a live chat hiring platform that connects hiring managers to talent in the manufacturing space in real time. He and his team also created a tech-enabled, subscription-based hiring service to proactively help employers identify the right talent.

MFGWorx is a portfolio company of Techstars, a business-accelerator program, and it was accepted into a workforce development program that has a 1% acceptance.

As a Latino, Calderon is very proud of everything he has accomplished. As a father to two amazing girls, he shows them every day that it is possible to reach your dreams through hard work and perseverance.

Words of wisdom: Failure is the most important part of your journey. When you’re not motivated, be consistent.

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