Thursday, March 30, 2017 6:30PM
Emcee/Moderator: Jamie McGriff

Ideation Forum • 6:30PM

James Collier, Keynote Speaker

Ideation deals with generating, developing and evaluating ideas and comprises all stages of a thought cycle, from innovation to development, to actualization. This is a core stage in launching innovative and viable new ventures. The 2017 Entrepreneurship Master Class will kick off with the Ideation Forum. Industry experts will discuss and share insights on topics such as design theory, prototyping, how marketing plays a role in the development of a business model, accelerator and incubator resources and much much more. Jamie McGriff, ABC 24 reporter, will emcee the forum.

Leslie Lynn Smith

Leslie Lynn Smith, PANELIST

President, Epicenter

Charles Marshall

Charles Marshall PANELIST

Chief Idea Officer, Signature Advertising

Melinda Emerson

Melinda Emerson, PANELIST

Small Business Expert

Mike Hoffmeyer

Mike Hoffmeyer, PANELIST

Director, Crews Center for Entrepreneurship

Nicole Heckman

Nicole Heckman, PANELIST

Founder, Littlebird Innovation

Charles Marshall

Phillip Ashley Rix, PANELIST

President & CEO
Phillip Ashley Chocolates

Friday, March 31, 2017 8:00 AM – 4:30 PM
Emcee/Moderator: Nicole A. Thomas, MPA/MBA

To Profit or Not To Profit


Rose Flenorl
Manager, Social Responsibility
FedEx Global Citizenship

A business by any other formation would smell as sweet… Many often start non-profits for “poetic” reasons. Understanding how to function as an organization designed to rely on the support of the government and charitable giving can go a long way towards your success in doing what you love; helping others. Small business owners will also gain insight into how to manage charitable requests and how a company develops a corporate social responsibility platform.

Wonder Woman


Learn from this dynamic panel of women entrepreneur superstars as they
share their stories of vision, sacrifice and success.

Daphne T. Large

Daphne T. Large

President & CEO, DataFacts

Katrina Lee

Katrina Robinson Lee, RN BSN

CEO, The Healthcare Institute

Susan Mealer

Susan Mealer

CEO, Answering Advantage

Sandra Walls

Sandra Walls

President & CEO, AIL Logistics Solutions

Kayla Rodriguez Graff

Kayla Rodriguez Graff

Co-founder & COO, SweetBio

Kayla Rodriguez Graff

Rachel Delgado

CEO, Juve Salonspa

The Yellow Brick Road


Lauren Ready, ForeverReady Productions • Isaac Singleton, Angie & Ike Photography • Larry Robinson, Kudzukian

Video, photography and podcasts; Oh My! Finding your voice in a time where everyone is talking can be intimidating. Let these digital media wizards show you the wonderment of utilizing various forms of video, photography and podcasting to market to and grow your target audience. You will discover how to leverage Facebook Live, YouTube and other forms of digital media to promote your business’ products and services.

Lunch Break


Maker’s Mark


Andrea Johnson, Bubble Bistro • Zelda Hill, Dixie Tea • Sheila Jay, Sheila Jay Designs

The Consumer & Packaged Goods industry is vast. There’s a new wave of “makers” on the rise and those who produce goods are the engine by which this nation and the world run. Learn first hand how top makers move from design to finished product to transport and all the steps involved in creating top products that sell.

Pitch Perfect


Christina Stevison, Sisterhood Showcase • Doug Marchant, Angel Investor

Pitching and acquiring capital investment is formula based but with varying factors. Learn from entrepreneurs on each side of the equation to discover how to refine your pitch, valuate your venture, secure investment and what to do after you close the funding deal.

Brand Architect


Phillip Ashley Rix
President & CEO, Phillip Ashley Chocolates

Branding & Business Development are critical to the success of any small business. Join this in depth conversation about what it takes to build and sustain a brand, and the strategic marketing behind growing a small business to international prominence.

Group Therapy


Audrey L. Townsel, PsyD, MHA
Calyx Psychological Services

Entrepreneurs are always on the clock. Our work becomes a huge part of our lives, especially the more and more it provides a life for our family. Dealing with the emotional and psychological rigors of entrepreneurship can be challenging. A medical expert will lead the discussion and answer questions around dealing with stress and establishing a healthy work life balance.

Saturday, April 1, 2017 8:00 AM – 4:30 PM
Subject Matter Expert Breakout Sessions

Series 1

8:30AM – 9:20AM

Startup Basic Training

Fishbowl Room

Tyler DeWitt
MoneypennyDeWitt and Associates

Avoid the accounting and legal pitfalls that many small businesses end up in, learn how the IRS and tax systems work and how to develop good business practices.

The Social Age

The Zone Room

Melinda Emerson
The Small Biz Lady

The Small Biz Lady is the preeminent strategic social media and small business consultant. You will learn how to leverage various types of media and how to effectively market in a digital age. Learn techniques to communicate your messaging in a way to attract influencers, bloggers, press, etc., and to ultimately create revenue for your business.

Small Business Sales Bootcamp

Methodist Theater

Cedric Brooks
International Sales

This is my company. There are many like it, but this one is mine! Selling often tends to be an intimidating task for many small businesses. Entrepreneurs must understand that they are in sales, whether they directly manage or hire someone to. Learn from a seasoned veteran how selling is an essential and vital part of a business and methods that will ensure growth.

Series 2

9:30AM – 10:20AM


Fishbowl Room

Emily Brackstone
Vice Chair, Emerging Companies Team
Baker, Donelson, Bearman, Caldwell & Berkowitz, PC

Entity formation, business licenses, trademarking, etc., are all vital components of launching your business and determining which direction can often be confusing. A top legal expert will guide you through the legal maze and answer questions regarding what’s best for you and your business.

Sponsorships 101

The Zone Room

Kim Cherry
Executive Vice President, Public Relations
First Tennessee

Corporations and brands are always seeking ways to market to as well as impact the communities in which they do business. A major sponsorship is often a way in which they are able to do so. Learn from an expert how to solicit, obtain and leverage sponsorship dollars to support your events, programs and community initiatives and how to create ROI for all partners involved.


Methodist Theater

Michael Graber
Founder & Managing Partner
Southern Growth Studio

We’ve all heard “the customer is always right.” Whether you subscribe to that notion or not, consumers and their opinions can play a key role in helping your business. Consumer Driven Marketing will give you insight into how you can utilize research based on the opinions and trends of your current and potential customers to develop products and services that sell.

Series 3

10:30AM – 11:20AM

Workplace Intelligence

The Zone Room

Kevin Woods, Executive Director
Workforce Investment Network

Small businesses are the lifeblood of the economy because we employ individuals that then use their pay to buy goods and services from other businesses. For many business owners, hiring employees can be scary. Going from a “solopreneur” to “boss” is a big shift. Building effective, productive teams and developing a culture that matches the vision of your business is a never ending challenge. A leading expert in workforce development will provide insight, guidance and resources in employing others.

Neighborhood Watch

Methodist Theater

Angela Wright, Agent
State Farm Insurance

Get detailed information on Property & Casualty and the various forms of Life insurance, designed to safeguard your business and protect you, the owner, and your family.

Rubix Cube

Fishbowl Room

Megan Turner, Senior Manager
Ernst & Young

Solving complex problems is an everyday task for businesses. The bigger the business grows, the more challenging your problem solving efforts become. Gain insight into effective methods and success building tools from an industry expert.

Series 4

11:30AM – 12:20PM

Flying First Class

The Zone Room

Brian Harris, Store Leader
Apple Store Saddle Creek

High Level Customer Service is essential to your business’ success. In an age of information, savvy consumers have completed 63% of the buying process before ever visiting your business. A leading expert on delivering an exceptional customer experience will give you the keys to exceeding expectations and winning loyal advocates for your business.

Legacy Building


Roberta “Sue” Matthews, JD
Director of Gift Planning
Le Bonheur Foundation

Entrepreneurs are constantly on the grind building their empire. As our businesses grow, the more responsibilities we have to oversee. We plan and prepare for the business and our employees to ensure the company grows and thrives. It is equally important to plan for what happens once we retire and even pass on. Learn from a financial and legal expert how successful entrepreneurs leverage their life insurance through programs such as planned giving to leave a lasting legacy.

X’s and O’s


Stuart Cohen
Chief Motivation Officer
Stuart Lloyd Cohen

Sit in on this session as a top business and entrepreneur coach helps you develop the play by play for your business model and answers questions on how to navigate the startup waters as well as moving throughout the various stages of a small business.

Lunch Break

12:30PM – 1:15PM


1:30PM – 2:30PM

Lewis & Clark

The Zone Room

Austin Baker, CEO
HRO Partners

Go on an entrepreneurial expedition and learn from an expert’s personal business journey as well as the tools that can help you run a successful business operation.

Small Business Expo • 2:30pm – 4:30pm

Exhibitor Booth Sponsors


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