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Erika Block

Erika Block

Laura & Ryan Vaughn

Laura & Ryan Vaughn

Mark Smutek

Mark Smutek

2015 Global Conference

2015 Global Conference

Chris Lampen-Crowell

Chris Lampen-Crowell

Ernie Pang

Ernie Pang

Jen Randall

Jen Randall

Daniel Jefferies

Daniel Jefferies

Kevin Romeo

Kevin Romeo

Charles Fierke

Charles Fierke

Jack Ahrens

Jack Ahrens

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From the Blog

Orbiting Around the Local Economy In Kalamazoo

Why is food important to the local economy? Sitting in front of an audience for a Startup Grind Kalamazoo Fireside Chat on MayStartup Grind Kalamazoo 28, 2015, Erika Block, Founder of Local Orbit, stated that food is really about people, culture, and local community. During what began as a theatre project, Erika found patterns when listening to stories about the paths people were making. Erika’s ability to listen and realize patterns in a manner that connected people eventually made her decide in 2007 that the “theatre project” was greater than a project.

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Celebrating Women, Maker Faire Style

“Laugh and ask the questions,” Rebecca Anders, the artist behind Chester the Fire Breathing Horse Art Car and Tiki Hot Rod, stated as advice to women. Rebecca, a Michigan native who now resides in California, was one of the makers at the 2015 Bay Area Maker Faire held in San Mateo, California on last month in May.

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The Yin and Yang of Startup Life

John Mueller interviewing Laura and Ryan Vaughn"Why can't I do what I want to do?" Laura Vaughn wondered, after being told from someone other than her husband, Ryan Vaughn, that between her and Ryan, "somebody has to have a steady job." The reference was to be in a full-time corporate position. The alternative that Laura wanted was to start her own business, which would mean Laura and Ryan would both be founders. Shortly after Ryan started Varsity News Network (VNN), a platform for high school sports, Laura wanted to start Sitting in a Tree to provide custom-made, beautifully-designed wedding website templates to communicate wedding details to guests. Laura not only did not follow the advice, she has since added Blackbird RSVP, which combines amazing event invitation designs with the mobile web.

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