Five years ago, theCO was just starting out and not nearly as well-known. Austin Thompson, one of theCO’s earliest members, sat down to tell us how he got involved all those years ago and why he continues to stick around. Austin has two companies, Thompson Industries, where he does social media marketing and small business consulting, and Random Pieces of Wood, which he started while at theCO, where he crafts laser engraved gifts.Read More
There aren’t many college students that get to work in their field of study while in undergrad, but Adam Curl is one exception. As a senior Computer Science major at Middle Tennessee State University, Adam works remotely as a web and software developer for Sodium Halogen at theCO, and has been a CO:member for the past two and a half years.Read More
theCO sees a lot of fresh faces coming through the front doors, bringing ideas and innovation. The Flowers family joined theCO in July, and has since been creating wooden products in the makerspace. Marie Flowers started her business “Moore Unique Products” with her fiance, Joseph Moore in May, which quickly became her full time job along with being the mom of Brennan and Alana, who also play a part in production.Read More
Most early teenagers are starting high school and spending their free time hanging out with friends, but at the young age of fourteen, Seth Nelson was busy starting a business. Nelson’s homegrown business, The Farmer’s Perk Organic Coffee Co., started from scratch with only $400 and a kid’s entrepreneurial spirit. He bought fold-out tables and air pots and began showing up every Saturday morning at the farmers’ market to serve Jacksonians coffee while they browsed the produce.Read More
theCO sees countless new faces every year, and when the summer rolls around, kids start showing up with their parents to participate in camps, build things in the makerspace, or print pieces on the 3D printer. Dave Roberts and his two sons are no different, as they joined theCO this spring. Dave works a physician assistant and also teaches as an adjunct at Bethel University. He says teaching his EKG class is a reason he enjoys theCO, since it is a workspace outside of his home, where his five kids are constantly running and playing.Read More
Kelly Maust was fascinated by the jewelry that her mother-in-law used to send her from Ecuador. The stones were meticulously polished and shone in a variety of vibrant colors—except they weren’t stones; they were made from palm seeds.
Ecuadorians harvest the seeds, dry them out, and then colorize them with vibrant dyes. They then use the seeds to make lovely and eco-friendly beads, small toys, keychains, ornaments, and more.
Two years ago, when Maust and her husband were visiting his parents for Christmas, Maust had an idea.Read More
Tell me about what you do.
I am between jobs right now. Since graduation, I worked at H&M Company, architects and engineers here in town, but then I started having a sense that this just wasn’t it as far as long-term career. It was a great job, awesome company, great to work for, but it just wasn’t fitting. And so, I decided to quit my job back at the end of the year. I’ve always known that I’m very left-brain, problem-solving, that sort of thing—but also very right-brain, creative, and I needed an outlet to experiment with that. So theCO has been a really great opportunity to try some ideas, work on some things that I’ve been thinking about for a while but just haven’t because I never had the time, so I don’t have a business per say, but I am considering trying to mass-produce what I’ve been working, which is a computer monitor stand.Read More
Tell me a little about yourself. I study history at Union University, and [I’m] about to start my senior year. I just got married a month ago. With my job . . . I do a lot of different things. I work for an insurance technology consulting firm that also does operations management consulting Tampa, Florida. I got connected with my boss a few years ago and have been working for [them] since then. I do kind of the website development. Actually, it's all kind of goes with the same idea. . . . We're resale. We do online trainings online, courses, insurance, and insurance technology. My branch and some other stuff.Read More
Tell me a little about yourself.
I have a health and wellness consulting firm that helps people make small changes in order to improve their lifestyle. During my other time when I'm not busy, I am a mother to two lovely boys. One is in college . . . and my youngest is in middle school. I'm married. We are getting ready to be empty-nesters. . . . I volunteer all over the place.
Andre Gist is owner of BG Innovations Safety Systems and MIG Steel Fabrications. He also won our Best in the West competition in 2015 for The Lighting Bug. Learn more about his businesses and how theCO has been a resource to him in the interview belowRead More