The storytelling platform Pass It Down, co-working space Society of Work and The Tomorrow Building apartments are the finalists for this year's Spirit of Innovation Award.
The Chattanooga Area Chamber of Commerce announced the finalists today. The Chamber sponsors the annual event to recognize Chattanooga's most innovative companies created in the past five years. The companies considered for the award have each generated $50,000 or more in revenues but are still in their growing phases and are selected by a judges panel based upon the success or potential success of their innovative business idea.
The awards program is scheduled for Friday Oct. 20 at the Chattanooga Convention Center and will include an Innovation Fair for local businesses, sponsors and previous award recipients.
Leslie Miley, a Silicon Valley native who has worked in engineering leadership roles at Slack, Twitter, Apple and Google, will be the keynote speaker at the luncheon. Miley works with Venture for America to enable Silicon Valley tech professionals to spend a year in cities such as Baltimore, Cleveland, Denver, Detroit, Miami, Nashville, New Orleans or Philadelphia, working with venture capitalists and innovation centers or districts on growing their tech communities.
"Leslie Miley has led technology development teams at some of the world's most innovative companies and is now helping build entrepreneurial communities around the country, focusing on hubs outside of the coasts," said Charlie Brock, CEO of Launch Tennessee. "We are thrilled to welcome him to Chattanooga to celebrate Startup Week and honor some of the region's leading innovators."
The finalists for the 2017 Spirit of Innovation Award will be recognized at the Oct. 20event when the winner will be announced.
Pass It Down was created by Christopher Cummings and offers a free digital storytelling platform that lets users create personal stories by using photos, text, audio and one-minute videos.
Society of Work, founded by Kelly Fitzgerald, offers shared space in the Edney Building where customers pay to work — somewhere between a traditional office and a coffee shop.
The Tomorrow Building, owned by Lamp Post Properties, is a the first co-living space of its kind in the Southeast. It was developed in the former 4-story Ross' Hotel building at Georgia Avenue and Patten Parkway, which was originally erected in 1888.