Menu

Featured Projects

I’ve been committed to the work of economic development for more than a decade. During this time, I have led various initiatives and projects that have fostered collaborations and resources for entrepreneurs to build community and grow their ventures. Many of these projects have elevated local companies, helped attract and retain talent, assisted job creation efforts and created business opportunities in Volusia County and throughout the state of Florida.

These projects include:

The Florida Virtual Entrepreneur Center

As the Program Director of The Florida Virtual Entrepreneur Center (FLVEC), I oversee and have helped create an online directory of business resource agencies, events & activities and entrepreneur profiles. The program is powered by The Florida High Tech Corridor Council in partnership with local sponsors. New, existing and relocating companies can use the website to discover a statewide community of resources ready to help them; find out about events and activities happening in their area; and connect with other entrepreneurs by reading their stories via short profiles. FLVEC was launched in 2004 in Volusia County and today includes all sixty-seven (67) counties in the state of Florida. I’m proud to have been a part of FLVEC for more than a decade and look forward to continuing for many years to come. www.FLVEC.com


Synergy Social Media

Being an early adopter of social media platforms to reach customers, I created my own venture to help other businesses reach their target markets through social media. With today’s platforms like Facebook and Instagram growing so quickly and the advantages of marketing tools provided to businesses to advertise, there’s a lot of opportunity in this new market for companies to leverage social media and create brand awareness. With my expertise and desire to help other businesses grow, I decided to launch a social media management, training and speaking company in 2015. Since then, I’ve been honored to work with companies in a variety of industries by providing consulting and hosting training workshops in-person and via webinar. Some of the companies and organizations I’ve had the privilege of working with include: The Hershey Company, Marshland Credit Union, The Small Business Development Center at Daytona State College, All Aboard Properties, DDR Roofing and Michael’s British, American & Foreign Auto Repair. www.SynergySocialMedia.com


Innovate Daytona

In 2015 I joined eight other amazing individuals who are passionate about our community to form a non-profit organization focused on building more innovation and entrepreneurship opportunities in the Volusia County, FL region. We hosted a half-day workshop for 50 community leaders featuring an innovation expert, break-out activities and networking. The workshop inspired several entrepreneurship-focused events and activities to launch and raised the awareness regarding the importance of supporting all levels of economic development in Volusia County. The books Startup Communities and The Rainforest: The Secret to Building the Next Silicon Valley provided the playbook for what could be done. Today, Innovate Daytona is spearheading 1 Million Cups Daytona Beach, Kickstart Weekend Daytona Beach and Startup Grind Ormond Beach. I’m proud to serve as President of Innovate Daytona and as a champion for Volusia County’s entrepreneurship movement. www.InnovateDaytona.com


1 Million Cups Daytona Beach

Four years ago I partnered with community stakeholders to organize a local, weekly chapter of a national initiative that attracts an average of 45 attendees for a one-hour session filled with inspiration, learning and building connections between established and aspiring entrepreneurs. Now in my fourth year leading this local chapter, organizing meetings and conducting outreach for presenters, 1MC has become a staple in Volusia County’s entrepreneurship community and has resulted in people starting businesses, existing companies growing their operations, featured articles in the Daytona Beach News-Journal and recognition from the Kauffman Foundation as a best-practice example for other 1MC chapters around the country. www.1MCDB.com

1 MILLION CUPS DAYTONA BEACH SUCCESS STORIES

Volusia County Authorpreneur Credits 1 Million Cups Daytona Beach for Helping Launch His Business Into a Full-Time Company


Kickstart Weekend Daytona Beach

By creating a competition for participants to turn an idea into an actual business in 48 hours, KickStart Weekend aims to build community and give aspiring entrepreneurs the tools and skills they need to launch a startup. I am a lead organizer for this annual event that brings together keynote speakers, coaches and mentors and a professional facilitator to provide the guidance and framework for the attendees to present their companies to a panel of judges. This event attracts a diverse group of individuals who work together and leverage each other’s strengths. Kickstart Weekend has been held three times in Volusia County during the fall in partnership with Embry-Riddle. www.KickstartWeekend.com


Startup Grind Ormond Beach

See a need, fill the need. Volusia County was lacking an evening event for entrepreneurs to socialize and get educated. I partnered with three colleagues to setup a Startup Grind chapter in Ormond Beach, FL. We bring in highly successful featured guests to share their story in a fireside chat format. I’ve been leading the fundraising effort, serving as the event emcee, distributing social media advertisements to garner participants and working with the featured guests to ensure a highly quality event is delivered. www.StartupGrindOrmondBeach.com


TrepStarz Podcast

After listening to a presentation by the Founder of PodFest, a conference uniting Podcasters from around the globe, I was inspired to create a podcast platform to tell the stories of Florida entrepreneurs. Launched in January 2017 in less than 45 days, co-host Chris Steffen and I recorded, edited and produced our own podcast each week for nearly a year. While this podcast is no longer active, we created 29 episodes to showcase and highlight bold entrepreneurs and the story behind their startups. All episodes remain available through iTunes, Stitcher and our website. trepstarz.libsyn.com

DOWNLOAD AND LISTEN ON ITUNES AND STITCHER


Elevate Daytona Beach

In addition to the various community projects and initiatives I blessed to be a part of, I am a co-founder of Elevate Daytona Beach Powered By The Leadership Daytona Alumni Council, a bi-annual event that brings the community together through thought-provoking speeches. Every Elevate speaker has 5 minutes and 20 slides to deliver their presentation about their personal or professional passions. This results in the audience engaging with the speakers and fellow attendees on the variety of speeches they just heard. We just held our fifth event in July 2018 with 12 speakers and 400 attendees. I play an instrumental role in recruiting and coaching the speakers, raising sponsorships to cover event costs, creating social media advertisements and overseeing the event execution. www.ElevateDaytonaBeach.com