Emily Skaar now on KEC team

KECBy Tom Ballard, Director of Innovation and Entrepreneurial Initiatives, Pershing Yoakley & Associates, P.C.

The newest member of the Knoxville Entrepreneur Center (KEC) team is Emily Skaar, a recent graduate of the University of Tennessee (UT).

Many readers may remember Skaar as the Co-Founder of The Gifter’s Market, an online retailer designed to help forgetful or time-challenged individuals purchase gifts for special occasions – birthdays, anniversaries and annual events like Valentine’s Day.

Skaar placed second in the last fall’s “Vol Court” pitch competition, and we profiled her company earlier this year.

We recently talked to Skaar when we visited KEC a few days after she had posted her new role on LinkedIn.

“I’m doing a little bit of everything,” she told us, adding that a good part of her time is devoted to intake meetings where she interacts with people wanting help.

“I figure out where to go from there to help them,” Skaar says.

She sees her role as KEC’s Entrepreneur Coordinator as a perfect fit for her skills.

“I’m good at connecting people and developing actionable lists of things to do,” Skaar says.

For KEC, she helps round-out a new team that includes Jim Biggs, the new Executive Director, and Jonathan Sexton, the new Entrepreneur-in-Residence.

“Emily brings a business major’s eye and a young entrepreneur’s energy to KEC’s efforts to spark innovation and build a more vibrant startup community in the region,” Biggs said. “As a recent UT graduate, Emily still has strong ties to the University and will be a great resource for KEC as we look to strengthen our relationship with great UT organizations such as the Anderson Center and the UT chapter of Collegiate Entrepreneurs Organization.”

Skaar is continuing her role as Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer of The Gifter’s Market. After all, juggling multiple challenges is what makes for a successful entrepreneur.

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