Today on the blog we feature our members at Insurance Social Media
Late last week our home for the past 2.5 years, the Midland Building, was sold to a developer that has exciting plans for the place. Those plans require a massive renovation of the 100+ year old structure and that’s an opportunity for us to evolve Gravitate into something stronger—in a new location.
I did something yesterday that I've never done before. I stopped in to my Congressman's office to talk to him about an issue that concerns me (I live in Iowa's 3rd District and I'm represented by David Young). The issue is the Affordable Care Act (a/k/a Obamacare), the current efforts to repeal and replace it, and how I think that will impact entrepreneurs and small business owners in Iowa.
Last week I wrote a post about the broader Iowa innovation community's achievements in 2016 and this week I want to highlight the good things that happened a little closer to home here in the Gravitate community. All in all, it was a pretty eventful year in 2016 so even though we’re already a few days into January, I wanted to take a few minutes to share some things that I'm proud we accomplished.
The following is a look back at the things that really stood out in the Iowa innovation community in 2016. To create it, I combed through the past 51 issues of The Pull and grouped the highlights into three pretty handy categories: Acquisitions, Accelerators and Investment. Of course, there were several other items that I wanted to include that didn't fit as neatly into one of the categories so you'll find them at the end in the "The Year in Other Stuff" section.
Putting together a post like this really makes one appreciate how much ground we cover as a community in the course of a year. You're all pretty great.
When I moved back to Des Moines from out-of-state in mid-2009, the idea of a "startup community" in Iowa was pretty new. We had always had people building scalable companies here and many of the supportive elements of the community (funding, mentorship, events, business assistance, social scene, etc.) already existed or were in the early stages of developing. However, something was missing.
No one was telling the story of individual local startups or the Iowa startup community.
DEG is full-service agency headquartered in Overland Park, Kan., but they also have a team located at Gravitate. DEG brings together strategy, creative, and technology to deliver the best solutions for it's customers. I recently was able to chat with Ben Robie, an architect at DEG, to learn a little more about what he does, and why he loves working at Gravitate.
We’re hiring two part time Community Managers—one to help us expand in the Des Moines metro area and one to do the same in Ames.
The ideal Gravitate Community Manager is equal parts connector, community builder and caretaker. They look forward to meeting new people and helping them find their place in the community. They’re also self-directed and willing to take on a variety of tasks as part of a small team.
As the holiday season approaches, it’s important to take time to reflect and remember all the reasons we have to give thanks. At Gravitate, we’re thankful to be part of Des Moines’ strong, vibrant entrepreneurial community. We’re thankful for innovative ideas, supportive community partners, and a diverse collection of passionate members. So as Americans prepare to celebrate Thanksgiving, we’d like to introduce you to some Gravitate members who originally hail from outside of the United States.
Paul Singh shared something on his blog this week with regards to comparing many of the 38 startup communities (including Des Moines, Cedar Rapids and Ames) that he had visited throughout the last year: "In short, it’s pretty much the same everywhere."
It isn’t uncommon to still be searching for your passion in life several decades in. Many of us are still asking ourselves what we want to be when we grow up far into our 30's, 40's and beyond. Some of us, though, find that spark so quickly it is electrifying and it drives us further than anything we ever dreamed.
Brad Dwyer first started programming at an age when many of us hardly knew how to use a computer, and has continued to push boundaries and challenge himself since then. I had the opportunity to chat with Brad about his Des Moines based startup Hatchlings, his background, and why he has decided to call Gravitate home.
Much respect to the hard work put in by our friends on the eastern side of the state this week in dealing with #Flood2016 preparations. As of this morning, it looks like the Cedar Rapids community did what needed to be done to avoid another disaster like the 2008 flood and that is such a relief (unfortunately, some smaller communities didn't fare as well).
There’s a lot to love about working from a coffee shop. From cozy corners and steaming handmade mugs to local art on the walls and neighborhood connections, you won’t be hard pressed to find a Des Moines cafe where it’s unpleasant to get at least some aspect of your work done.
But when it comes to coffee shop coworking, we also recognize that your local favorite isn’t always an option. Sometimes you’re across town and in need of some free wifi, or you’re working during the late hours or weekend days your go-to joint is always closed. When that happens we fully understand that you need to take all of the caffeine and free wifi you can get, and head to a coffee shop chain.
While there are pros and cons to each major chain we see in the metro, their common appeal remains the same—predictable hours, consistent offerings, and a general acceptance of patrons who camp out all day long.
Matt Patane, technology and innovation reporter for the Des Moines Register and Geoff Wood, community builder at Gravitate, sit down for an in-depth discussion of the companies, events and ideas making news in the Iowa innovation community.
Topics discussed on this episode: 20 years of The Centers Pappajohn, catching up on Iowa's growing crop of accelerators and looking back at the TelePharm acquisition
Feedback, thoughts or suggestions? Hit us up on Twitter or email the show at firstname.lastname@example.org