Tue, Feb 20, 2018

​Article courtesy of Ames Tribune

By Dan Mika, Staff Writer, Ames Tribune

Billi Hunt, the new director of the Cultivation Corridor, is planning for a major promotional push for the group a few days into her new job.

Hunt was named to the Cultivation Corridor’s executive director role late last month. She was most recently a government affairs manager with DuPont for 19 years, focusing on lobbying and partnerships in Midwest states. She was previously a delegate member for the group.

Hunt replaces founding executive director Brent Willett, who left the post last August to become CEO of the Iowa Health Care Association.

Hunt, an Iowa native and ISU graduate, said the job fulfills her trifecta of loves for agriculture, ISU and the state in general. She said Willett did a good job in building the group’s identity, and it’s now her job to spread it across the state.

“Eighty percent of my time is to focus on brand enhancement, economic development, fostering innovation,” she said.

The Corridor, founded in 2014, is an economic development group that works on attracting agriculture and biotechnology companies to the state. It has backing from the Ames Chamber of Commerce, Iowa State University, the Greater Des Moines Partnership and several private sector companies.

The strategy she hopes to take the Corridor out to the community through “grassroots” outreach with local groups within the next two years, speaking with individuals, businesses and civic groups, along with a boosted social media campaign.

She said local residents that don’t work in agriculture or technology jobs or have interest in economic development issues don’t know what the Corridor is or how it can benefit the region. If more people knew about what the Corridor does, it would make the region more attractive for people potentially looking to move, Hunt said.

“Those who work in the industry, those who are trying to move things forward understand it very well, but a neighbor two houses down might not know what the Cultivation Corridor is,” she said. “We have to explain that, we have to bring them into the fold.”

Hunt said her background in agriculture will be helpful for economic developers in Ames or Des Moines when they attempt to attract investment and companies in the agricultural or biotech sectors based on her existing relationships developed at DuPont and her former job as agriculture coordinator with what was then the Greater Des Moines Chamber of Commerce (that organization later rebranded as the Greater Des Moines Partnership.)

Hunt also believes the Corridor and its support of the Ag Startup Engine, based at the ISU Research Park, makes the group’s work important for the farmers that most benefit from those products, whether they help farmers cut down on input costs or give them historical data on how their plots are doing.

“Some of these small entrepreneurs in the state that are doing some really cool things,” she said. “...They’re new, they’re innovative.”

Read the full article at amestrib.com.


Nebullam announces two new board members and advisor

Mon, Jun 26, 2017

Iowa State University Research Park Corporation

Nebullam, L.L.C., located in the Iowa State University (ISU) Research Park, announced the appointment of two new members to its board of directors, as well as one new advisor.Nebullam, which is currently in the ISU Startup Factory’s 52-week super accelerator program, combines aeroponics and machine learning technologies for crop and micro-green producers. Founded in 2016 by Danen Pool, and ISU alumni Clayton Mooney and Mahmoud Parto, the company is currently conducting paid pilot projects, with plans to transition to commercial agreements by the end of 2018.


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ISU Research Park Perks and Possibilities

Wed, Jun 21, 2017

Iowa State University Research Park Corporation

In an ongoing effort to meet the needs of a rapidly growing community, the ISU Research Park has been undergoing transformations that are making waves. The construction of an outdoor green space and an array of amenities are predicted to enhance the work and leisure lives of the Research Park tenants, future tenants and those in the community. The expansion will increase Ames’ and the park’s attractiveness as a possible destination for young professionals, and companies.

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Research Park hosts colleagues

Mon, Jun 19, 2017

Iowa State University Research Park Corporation

​Officials at the UI's Research Park hosted a first-of-its-kind event last week.

They hope the impact is felt around the country, maybe even the world. They brought in people from research parks around the country and Canada.

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Culhane reports on Ames Economic Development Commission annual summary

Thu, Jun 15, 2017

Iowa State University Research Park Corporation

​Iowa State Daily reporter Maggie Curry covered the Ames City Council Meeting on June 13, 2017 where economic development was a topic. As part of the agenda, president of the Ames Chamber of Commerce Dan Culhane presented the Ames Economic Development Commission annual summary.

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Ag Startup Engine continues to gain traction

Wed, Jun 14, 2017

​The Ag Startup Engine, a new initiative at the Iowa State University Research Park, continues to attract firms and organizations to join and invest in its future. The business incubator was created last year to help address two fundamental gaps that prevent ag business startups and entrepreneurs from being more successful in Iowa: a lack of early-stage investment funding and a need for organized mentorship from successful Iowa and Midwest entrepreneurs.

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The Ag Startup Engine Announces Initial Investment in Nebullam and Follow-on Investment in Performance Livestock Analytics

Mon, Jun 12, 2017

Iowa State University Research Park Corporation

​Ag Startup Engine (ASE), located at the Iowa State University (ISU) Research Park, announced that it has made an initial seed investment in Nebullam, an aeroponic and machine learning technology company for crop producers. Nebullam is a member of the 52-week ISU Startup Factory Program.

The ASE has also made a follow-on investment in Performance Livestock Analytics (PLA), a cloud-based application aimed at bringing solutions to livestock producers.

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Workiva: Best Places to Work in IT Employer Profile

Mon, Jun 12, 2017

Workiva

​Workiva was recently ranked 13 of 20 Best Places to Work in IT by Computerworld Magazine.

Read more about what makes Workiva an extraordinary workplace for IT professionals.

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Workiva Named One of the Best Places to Work in IT by Computerworld

Mon, Jun 12, 2017

Workiva

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Cyclists race through downtown for inaugural Ames Grand Prix

Sat, Jun 10, 2017

Iowa State University Research Park Corporation

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Cyclists and spectators crowded downtown Ames for the inaugural Main Street Criterium, the first of two days of cycle racing in what is expected to become an annual event. 

The first day of Ames Grand Prix featured The Main Street Criterium, a series of eight races with about 300 cyclists of varying levels of competition involving men, women and children. Races began every 30 minutes with the start and finish line in front of Skunk River Cycles, 308 Main St.

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Bikers to race in Ames this weekend for Grand Prix

Fri, Jun 9, 2017

Iowa State University Research Park Corporation

​Cyclists from all over central Iowa will flock to Ames this weekend for the Ames Grand Prix. 

The races will take place on two different tracks. The Ames Main Street Criterium on June 10, and the Iowa State University Research Park Circuit on June 11.

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Hertz Associated Ltd. and Hertz Farm Management Join Ag Startup Engine Effort

Thu, Jun 1, 2017

Iowa State University Research Park Corporation

​Hertz Associates Ltd. and Hertz Farm Management (Hertz) have joined forces with the Ag Startup Engine (ASE) at the Iowa State University (ISU) Research Park to bring education, mentoring, and financing resources to young Iowa entrepreneurs and startups focused on agriculture technologies.

The Ag Startup Engine effort was launched two years ago to help address two fundamental gaps that prevent agricultural startups and entrepreneurs from being more successful in Iowa: early seed stage investment and organized mentorship from successful Iowan and Midwestern entrepreneurs.

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