Stories of Technology, Innovation, & Entrepreneurship in the Southeast

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April 07, 2024 | Tom Ballard

News & Notes | Several upcoming events worth noting

Also, several people are taking on new or expanded roles.

From Nashville:

General registration is now open for the Tennessee Valley Corridor’s (TVC) National Summit scheduled for May 29-30 at the Vanderbilt Student Life Center Ballroom in Nashville. Sessions are planned on “Ensuring America’s Security & Global Leadership”; “Forging Tomorrow’s Advanced Energy Solutions”; “Exploring & Discovering Through Science, Research, & Space”; and “Driving Innovation & Job Creation in Transportation & Mobility.”

The TVC is a 501(c)6 regional non-profit organization that works across 13 contiguous congressional districts in five states to promote the TVC’s national leadership in science and technology through regional cooperation. Its mission is to sustain the region’s existing federal missions, compete for and attract new federal investments, and leverage those investments for more private sector job creation.

To register, click here.

From Johnson City:

  • The seventh annual Pitch Startup Competition returns at 6 p.m. EDT on June 17 to TVA Credit Union Ballpark, home of the Johnson City Doughboys. There attendees will be able to witness the region’s top start-ups pitch their ideas for a chance to win thousands of dollars in cash prizes. Those interested in pitching can click here to apply. The event, sponsored by FoundersForge, is for family and friends to cheer on their local entrepreneurship community, enjoy complimentary food and drinks, and take a glimpse at the future of our region. Admission is free, but RSVP is required. To register, click here.
  • Bo Wilkes has been named Chief Growth Officer (CGO) at Ballad Health. In addition to his current responsibilities managing the Ballad Health Innovation Center, Ballad Ventures and Ballad Health’s operational excellence department and enterprise project management office, he will now oversee corporate growth and business development functions.

From Knoxville:

  • As previously reported, applications close this Friday for “The Works,” the Knoxville Entrepreneur Center‘s 12-week summer accelerator for early stage software technology and tech-enabled companies ready for scale. The program, which kicks off on June 12, will convene at KEC every Wednesday afternoon from 2 to 5 p.m., offering participants face-to-face interactions with industry experts, facilitators, and mentors. To learn more and apply, click here.
  • Connie Alexander, a Senior Data Science Engineer at Coalition Inc., a cybersecurity insurance company, will lead this week’s Knoxville Technology Council discussion about data analytics. The Tech Talk beginning at 5:30 p.m. EDT on April 11 at the Techstars space in downtown Knoxville is titled “Everyone Needs Data Analytics.” Registration is free at this link.

From Vonore:

Sam Jackson, a 15-year veteran of Genera Inc., has joined the HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology in Huntsville, AL as Director of the Greening the Southeast Initiative, one of the National Science Foundation-funded “Regional Innovation Engines” program. One of 44 proposals that received $1 million in funding, it involves the University of Tennessee, Knoxville as a collaborator. The HudsonAlpha-managed program is focused on the transition of new biobased technologies to the commercial marketplace to enhance economic development across the region.

From Murfreesboro:

On May 9, the Drive Electric Tennessee initiative will host the second annual DriveElectricTN Momentum Summit at Middle Tennessee State University in Murfreesboro. Known as “The Momentum Summit,” the event will focus exclusively on transportation electrification efforts including workplace charging, economic and environmental benefits, and workforce/manufacturing efforts in the electric vehicle industry across Tennessee. To register, click here.

Two More from Nashville:

  • Melt Pharmaceuticals, a clinical‑stage pharmaceutical company, raised $24 million in Series B Preferred Stock financing. Led by Chief Executive Officer Dr. Larry Dillaha, the company develops proprietary non-opioid, non-IV, sedation, and analgesia therapeutics for human medical procedures in the hospital, outpatient, and in-office settings. The company intends to use the funds to support the further development of MELT-300, including the MELT-300 Phase 3 program.
  • Hypepotamus recently published an article spotlighting Eller Kelliher, Chief Investment Officer for Launch Tennessee. The Tennessee native built her career across the state’s venture capital scene, starting as an intern at the angel fund The JumpFund in Chattanooga and then moved her way up the ranks at Jumpstart Foundry, a seed-stage healthcare innovation fund based out of Nashville. The article can be found here.

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