Launch Tennessee (LaunchTN) announced today the hires of Jennifer Allen Kay as Director of Marketing/Partnership Development and Susan Parham as Finance and Accounting Manager. In addition, Jami Creel and George Curran, who served as interns in LaunchTN’s Specialist program, have joined the company in full-time roles, as Coordinators of Entrepreneurship and Capital Formation, respectively.
“We are excited to expand our team with these capable professionals, who bring a variety of experiences and skill sets to our organization,” said Charlie Brock, CEO of LaunchTN “As we work with more entrepreneurs and partners across the state in our mission to elevate Tennessee’s prominence nationwide as a great place for entrepreneurs, innovators and investors, it’s crucial that we continue to strengthen our team. Doing so with talented Tennessee natives is particularly gratifying.”
Kay is tasked with brand strategy, event marketing, expanding national partnerships and strengthening the state-wide entrepreneur network. Parham will oversee all aspects of LaunchTN’s fiscal components and HR needs.
Kay most recently was responsible for global operations at a consumer startup in Berlin, Germany, where she spent two years focusing on investor relations, brand strategy, communications, HR and culture. Prior to this operational startup role, she spent ten years in the media industry in New York City, managing digital for such brands as Prevention, Good Housekeeping, Parenting and truTV. Her focus was on organic growth and audience development, which she leveraged as a mentor for Media Camp, Time Warner’s media-focused startup accelerator based in San Francisco.
Kay is a Marshall County, Tennessee native and a 2002 graduate of the University of Tennessee-Knoxville, with a B.A. in English. She says she’s thrilled to be back in her home state working to elevate its national profile as a prime destination to launch a startup.
“LaunchTN does exceptional work to grow the regional ecosystem and to support founders, and I’m humbled to be a part of it,” Kay said. “This is not the Tennessee of my childhood; it has a much more vibrant, innovative and progressive atmosphere. It’s exciting to apply my background in growth and branding to market the innovative value proposition that Tennessee offers to entrepreneurs.”
Most recently, Susan Parham was employed for five years with a non-profit organization where she administered the health insurance programs for all employees and retirees. Her career background includes time spent in retail as a small business owner and working for the Tennessee Valley Authority.
Parham has an AS degree in Electrical Engineering Technology from Nashville State Technical Institute.
Creel served as a LaunchTN Specialist in Entrepreneurship and Innovation. In her full-time role, she will coordinate the new Networks program while managing the company’s social marketing campaigns. A native of Murfreesboro, Tennessee, Creel is a 2014 graduate of Middle Tennessee State University.
Curran will handle all research needs for LaunchTN, along with tracking statewide investment activity and supporting the implementation of the new angel tax credit. He is a Memphis native and a 2014 graduate of Vanderbilt University.