New Leadership Revitalizes Chattanooga's 1 Million Cups

Monday, April 5, 2021

Chattanooga’s 1 Million Cups has a new leadership team. The chapter is part of a national program that engages, educates and connects entrepreneurs on the local level. Founded by the Kauffman Foundation, 1 Million Cups is based on the notion that entrepreneurs network and discover solutions over a million cups of coffee. The free, weekly gathering helps build startup communities on a grassroots level.

Entrepreneurs, innovators, funders and other interested community members are invited to attend each Wednesday from 9-10 a.m. The Chattanooga 1MC community is currently meeting via Zoom due to COVID-19. Weekly meetings will eventually be in person on the 5th floor of The Edney building at 1100 Market St., once it is safe to do so.

The program’s model is consistent in each city: Every Wednesday morning, one or more early-stage startups present their companies to an audience of mentors, advisers and other entrepreneurs. Each founder presents for six minutes, followed by a 20-minute question-and-answer session with the audience.

The 1 Million Cups revitalization in Chattanooga will feature a town hall presentation sharing 1 Million Cups with community members, letting them know the value it provides to the community, the current state of 1 Million Cups, what it is looking for from the community, and what it is hoping to provide to the community going forward.

In each 1 Million Cups city, local entrepreneurs drive the program as community organizers. Volunteering for the leadership roles in Chattanooga are:

Aram Perez, Founder/CEO/Chief Tinkering Officer of The STEAM Train;
Kirk Burton, CEO of Tight Loop Solutions;
Lya Kimbrough, Events & Outreach Manager at The Enterprise Center;
Nicole McDermid, Owner & Behavior Specialist of Recess for Dogs;
Zac Beker, Programs Administrator at The Company Lab;

"1 Million cups is a great way to get feedback on your business idea or venture from the people in your community,” Ms. Kimbrough said. “If you’re struggling with a problem or just want advice on which way you should take your business this group is a great way to do get those answers.”

The group is currently meeting on a weekly basis with the Town Hall scheduled to be held on Wednesday, May 12, at 9 a.m.

View the national website at www.1millioncups.com and access the Chattanooga microsite at https://www.1millioncups.com/chattanooga.



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