Stories of Technology, Innovation, & Entrepreneurship in the Southeast

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July 10, 2022 | Tom Ballard

A couple of events, a new start-up, an award and several appointments top this week’s “News & Notes”

Our weekly “News & Notes” feature includes posts about two upcoming events in Knoxville, a student entrepreneur at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga (UTC), a new consulting company for healthcare entrepreneurs in Nashville, and a promotion for a former State of Tennessee executive.

From Knoxville:

  • Just a reminder that the eight start-ups in the inaugural “Cultivate Appalachia Bootcamp” (see article here) begin the fast-paced, four-day program this afternoon and will showcase their ideas at an event from 5 to 7 p.m. Thursday at the Techstars space, 445 South Gay Street, Suite 101. That’s across Union Avenue from the Embassy Suites Hotel. The public is invited. To register, click here.
  • Knoxville’s “Women in Entrepreneurship” (WiE) group is shaking-up things for this month’s meeting. The community of entrepreneurs, supporters, and advocates that meetup to share stories, tips, and advice for any woman either running a business or wanting to start one will hold the July 12 event from 3 to 5 p.m. at the Hard Knox Pizza location in Hardin Valley (10847 Hardin Valley Road). To register, clicker here.

From Chattanooga:

Taylor Bean, a UTC senior, and fellow student Donyea McDermott won first place last November in the “Hatch It!” pitch competition for UTC students. Now, as the Middle Tennessee native prepares to graduate in December, she’s also planning to release the What’sNxt app that won the competition. UTC spotlights Bean and the motivation behind the app in this news release.

From Nashville:

  • Lisa Piercey, who recently left her position as Commissioner of the Tennessee Department of Health, has announced the launch of Tristela Strategies LLC, a boutique consulting firm dedicated to advising healthcare entrepreneurs and investors on market strategy, public policy, and growth opportunities. The new venture’s name is derived from a translation of “three stars,” referencing the firm’s three areas of expertise – clinical, operational, and policy – and Tennessee’s iconic symbol of unity across the state’s three grand divisions.
  • The Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce has named Sam Davidson as the “2022 Nashpreneur of the Year.” According to this post on the WTVF webpage, “Davidson has a track record of creating and growing companies and communities, including Batch — where he is CEO and co-founder — Onward Strategy, CoolPeopleCare and Inconvenient Youth (part of The Climate Project). He is a professional speaker and has written three books.” The award is given to an individual in the Nashville community who exemplifies creativity, resilience, risk-taking and leadership, paving the way for other entrepreneurs and small businesses to succeed.
  • Mary Hannnah Garner has started at new role at the Nashville Entrepreneur Center. The graduate of Middle Tennessee State University with a B.S. in Interdisciplinary Media is the Center’s Community and Membership Coordinator. In that role, she will be supporting various aspects of the Center’s mission including the PreFlight program, membership, and development.

From Memphis:

Ted Townsend, former Deputy Commissioner and Chief Operating Officer of the Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development, has been named President and Chief Executive Officer of the Greater Memphis Chamber. He’ll move up from the role of the organization’s Chief Economic Development Officer in December when Beverly Robertson leaves the top executive role to return to TRUST Marketing, the business she and husband founded 30 years ago. Townsend is also the Immediate Past Chair of the Board of Directors of Life Science Tennessee.

From Memphis but Statewide and Beyond:

Applications are now open for the “AgLaunch365 Row Crop Challenge and Livestock Challenge.” As a general rule, AgLaunch365 companies are early stage agtech start-ups, but with a prototype that can be trialed on-farm within the next year. AgLaunch365 is the entry point for the full AgLaunch accelerator and Farmer Network trials. Start-up technologies are selected based on their potential to have a positive impact at the farm level. Interested individuals can learn more about the AgLaunch365 program at this link or apply directly here.

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