The Innovation Ecosystem is An ART

Lauren Asmus is the Director of StartGNV, an organization dedicated to helping Gainesville’s creative, entrepreneurial circles thrive. As Lauren will tell you, this means she spends most of her day making connections — working with both employers and employees to create a community and make sure everyone knows…everyone! 

“Gainesville is a little big town.” 

Lauren came to Gainesville after 10 years in Montana, where she fell in love with the creativity and the breweries. When she first visited Gainesville, she noticed that same creative spirit (and breweries that rival the Mountain West). Immediately, she felt at home. 

That “at home” feeling has continued to flourish when Lauren began to meet many of Gainesville’s entrepreneurs, all of whom were willing to lend a hand and look for ways to help one another. She mentioned a fellow creative’s willingness to read over her investor emails — line by line. This community spirit impacts everyone within the Gainesville creative circle, bringing in new talent and keeping the talent that is already in town. 

That’s part of Lauren’s role at StartGNV — showcasing how Gainesville is THE hub for entrepreneurs. She works to help businesses start in town, scale in town, and dream…in town! 

“I’m drinking the Gainesville Kool-Aid.” 

As StartGNV continues to work on behalf of Gainesville’s start-ups and entrepreneurs, COVID-19 is the question mark on everyone’s mind. How do these small businesses shift and adapt to meet the current societal needs? StartGNV is figuring this out every day, beginning with events like “Safe Sip” at local breweries and ensuring that entrepreneurs are able to continue networking with individuals who could give them the boost they need. 

No matter where the public health situation is, Lauren has a couple of clear goals for Gainesville’s entrepreneurial community. First and foremost, it’s connecting people who have similar goals and missions. She also fully believes in a “swim together” mindset, working as a team to make Gainesville grow and succeed within the place they all call home.  

Listen to the 142th episode of the WHOA GNV podcast to learn more about how Lauren and the crew at StartGNV are helping bring entrepreneurial talent to Gainesville.

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