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Teknovation News and Notes
August 13, 2023 | Tom Ballard

News & Notes | UTK wins DOE funding for a novel building envelope retrofit solution

Northeast Tennessee events include the 20th anniversary of the Holston Business Development Center, Sync Space's virtual office hours, and extension of early bird discount for "Startup Mountain Summit."

From Knoxville:

The University of Tennessee, Knoxville has been awarded $1.5 million by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to develop a novel building envelope retrofit solution that integrates exterior insulation boards, low-carbon spray foam, and a cladding layer to improve air tightness, increasing home energy efficiency. It was one of 29 projects across 15 states that successfully competed for a part of a $46 million pool to develop advanced building technologies and retrofit practices that enable healthier households and communities and reduce energy waste. The name of the project is “Cost-Compression Solution for Continuous Insulation Retrofit via Spray-on Monolithic Insulated Cladding (MonoInsu).”

From Chattanooga:

Jay Shaffer, Market Director for VentureSouth Chattanooga and Co-Lead for the Screening Committee at Atlanta Technology Angels, will lead the discussion at 12 noon meeting on August 17 of the Chattanooga Founders Forum. The meeting will be held at the Society of Work, 110 Somerville Avenue #Suite 266. To register, click here.

From Kingsport:

  • The Holston Business Development Center (HBDC) is celebrating its 20th anniversary with an open house from 3 to 6 p.m. EDT August 28. Individuals are encouraged to drop in at 2005 Venture Park and get to know a little more about HBDC and what the programs it offers. To reserve a sport, email HBDC Director Liz Bennett at
  • The Sync Space Entrepreneur Center has announced that it is now scheduling virtual office hours every Tuesday afternoon between 3 and 5 p.m. EDT. Any member of the team will be available to chat with individuals about the Center’s programs, discuss an entrepreneur’s business concept, gain some insight into branding, or anything else. To schedule a session, visit and select a team member with whom to talk.

From Johnson City:

FoundersForge, the organizer of the “Startup Mountain Summit,” has announced that it has extended the early bird discount for tickets. Instead of the normal $349, tickets will be priced at $249. How long the offer will be active is unknown. The three-day event begins with a welcoming reception on October 25. To purchase tickets, click here.

From Nashville:

The 2023 edition of the BrainTrustLIVE conference will feature Chanda Bell and Christa Pitts, Co-Founders and Co-Chief Executive Officers of The Lumistella Company, home of The Elf on the Shelf®. The half-day event is designed to bring women business owners, and those who champion them, together to build new relationships, inspire personal and professional growth, and learn from successful women in business. The theme of this year’s conference, scheduled for September 14 at Saint Elle, 1420 3rd Avenue South, is “Reframe Your Failures.” For more information and a link to registration, click here.

About Nashville and Memphis:

The two largest cities in Tennessee are among the top 25 in the nation that are most likely to be adversely impacted by the loss of jobs to artificial intelligence. That’s according to a report issued by the Chamber of Commerce, a company that researches business issues and topics. Nashville ranked #10, while Memphis #13 in possible job losses. For Music City, it was 14 percent of the workforce, while it was a little less – 13.75 percent – for Memphis.

To determine the rankings, the Chamber of Commerce considered the most at-risk occupations according to data from the World Economic Forum’s “Future of Jobs Report 2023.” These occupations include accounting, bookkeeping, and payroll clerks; administrative and executive secretaries; assembly and factory workers; bank tellers and related clerks; building caretakers and housekeepers; business services and administration managers; cashiers and ticket clerks; client information and customer service workers; data entry clerks; door-to-door sales workers; news and street vendors, and related workers; security guards; material recording and stock-keeping clerks; postal service clerks; retail salespersons and telemarketers.


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