36|86 Entrepreneurship Festival is your chance to hear insider tips and advice from tech titans and serial founders from around the country who have been in your shoes, and network with VCs and business connections that can help you grow.
One of the joys of entrepreneurship is that it allows you to chase your lifelong passions and dreams. For Renee Bobb, that passion is basketball. From being an All-American in high school to playing Division I and representing her country playing for the US Navy, Renee has followed that passion her whole life.
However, when she moved to Nashville 10 years ago, she noticed that Nashville didn’t have any competitive basketball leagues. At that point, Renee had been an entrepreneur for a decade, so she thought to herself, “Hey, I can do something about this.” From that idea came the Music City Icons, a semi-professional women’s basketball team based right here in Nashville.
This week (May 15-18) is Nashville Entrepreneur Week! From Tuesday-Friday, Nashville's entrepreneurial community will come together to learn from each other through an amazing lineup of speakers. Topics range from validating your business idea to healthcare, raising capital, leadership, and more.
One of the final events on Friday is the Catfish Tank (a Nashville Predators-themed name playing off of Shark Tank), a pitch competition between 10 teams with the opportunity to win $10,000. We are so excited that 8 out of the 10 teams chosen to pitch are part of the EC community! Learn more about them below, and RSVP here.
On the evening of May 1, Nashville's business community gathered at the EC for PreFlight Pitch Night, a celebration of the entrepreneurs graduating from Session 1 2018 of our PreFlight program. 14 weeks ago, a group of 20+ entrepreneurs came to the EC with just an idea. They spent every Monday night learning and working on a business plan, meeting with advisors, and slowly forming that idea into a viable, tangible business. At PreFlight Pitch Night, 6 of those entrepreneurs gathered to pitch their ideas to the public and a panel of judges for the first time. We could not be more proud of them and so thankful all of you came out to support them!
Thirteen music-focused entrepreneurs from around the world descended on Nashville Thursday night to pitch their startup ideas as they were introduced to the community as the newest members of Project Music Portfolio.
Throughout the month of March, we've been celebrating Women’s History Month by shining a spotlight on the women entrepreneurs and leaders in our community. What has been your greatest reward in being an entrepreneur? What advice would you give to young women who want to succeed in the workplace? We’ve shared their answers to a few of these questions on our social media pages, and below, you’ll find a compilation of our favorite answers to 5 different questions featuring 9 women.
Brittany Chase is currently Adjunct Assistant Professor of Musicology and Ethnomusicology at Vanderbilt University and Belmont University. She specializes in American Popular Music and also teaches courses in World Music and the intersections of Music, Identity and Diversity.
Matt is the Founder & CEO at Evolve Health Services, a medical management organization offering a suite of unparalleled, customized solutions designed to assist physicians in maximizing patient care and profitability.
Danielle, one of our awesome EC Advisors, is highly energized by investing in people, goal setting and achievement, brand strategy, online marketing initiatives, creative collaborations and teamwork. My favorite things in this world are people and pizza. She currently serves as the Chief Executive Officer at Experience Global.
Renee Bob is the founder of Music City Icons. Philanthropist, Author, Empowerment Trainer, Publisher and Radio & TV Show Host: Renee’s passion for playing basketball started in Staten Island, NYwhere she played in Middle School and High School. Upon graduation from High School, Renee went on the play Division 1 basketball at Cheyney State University. The highlight of Renee’s career was playing NATO Basketball for the United States Navy. Because of the love Renee has for game, it was easy for her to make the transition in to Owner of the Music City Icons Semi Professional Women’s Basketball Team.
Elizabeth is passionate about entrepreneurship and the power of business as a force for good. Born in Kuwait, she migrated to the US in 2002 from India and holds a Masters in Computer Applications. Elizabeth is a business consultant continuously seeking opportunities to grow and share her knowledge with fellow entrepreneurs!
Cody Hutchins always knew that normal wouldn't cut it. He had to accomplish something more. While traveling abroad, Cody realized the power that a simple bracelet had to spark conversation & ignite connection. He refused to let these experiences sit idle. Bohnd Bracelets was born. Garnering attention through competitions while still in undergrad at WKU, Bohnd Bracelets quickly grew. Today, Cody's dreams of accomplishing something more have come to life as Bohnd Bracelets continues to expand & impact individuals across the globe.
We're lucky enough to have Don Leyrer scooting around the EC as one of our treasured advisors. A jack of all trades, Don has set foot in a number of different industries & truly made an impact. He began his career in social work as a houseparent for abused children & later as a Senior Adult Probation Officer. He then transitioned to the corporate world as an executive for high profile Fortune 100 companies. After impactful work at Comdata Corporation, Don co-founded Mailnet Services Inc., a venture backed database marketing firm that specializes in customer analytics, data management & direct marketing solutions.
His accolades don't stop there. Don also serves on the Health & Workforce Development Implementation Team of the Mayors Poverty Reduction Initiative & volunteers with CASA as a court appointed special advocate for children that have been taken into state custody.
Walker Morrow is the Founder & President of Forward It On. This organization places a firm focus on the belief that successful partnerships are based on three primary criteria:
shared vision, trust, & open communication. Walker is a go-getter that believes in the power of community & working together to seek a greater good.
Todd Lawrence is the executive director of Nashville's Urban Green Lab & has accomplished a slew of incredible things in his life ranging from service in the Peace Corps to leading the historic International AIDS Candlelight Memorial. His current project, the Urban Green Lab, boasts a powerful mission: to facilitate a range of educational & social programs that inspire Nashvillians to make sustainability a bigger part of their lives in their homes, neighborhoods, & businesses. They are making moves to instigate true, positive change in the community through educational workshops & are even reaching out to the younger generation through their Mobile Lab that travels to local schools.
Aleshia Curry is the founder of XenaFree, a subscription service that keeps your personal stash of feminine care products stocked at work. She is also a Diversity Scholar for our current session of PreFlight.
It takes a village. Entrepreneurship is hard work. The impact that our advisors are making in the lives of the entrepreneurs in Nashville is intangible. We want you to know who they are and why they are a big deal. Welcome to out "Meet Your Advisor" feature that will run its course until we have introduced you to all the "doing it, done it or invested in it" people who are navigating our city's entrepreneurs.
Member Spotlight: Armand Lauzon is the founder of Belle, a company that brings beauty and wellness services to you at home, the office, hotel, and anywhere else. They have been featured in The Tennessean, Forbes, and more.
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