The City’s Office of Business Support is seeking nominations for its next Business Advisory Council.
Twelve local business representatives will be selected to serve two-year terms on the Council. The current Council members, who came on board in summer 2015, gave advice and perspective on a wide range of issues – everything from the best practices of and locations for food trucks to recommending ways to make it easier for entrepreneurs and owners of small businesses to get up and running.
The members whose terms are ending – John Davis, Marathon Gas Stop N Go Market; Rob Glass, Computer Systems Plus; Terry Henley, Terry Henley Insurance Agencies; Tammy Kaousias, Kaousias Law PLLC; Dominique Oakley Lacey, StressTheSeams and Wayward Art; Dale Mackey, Dale's Fried Pies & The Central Collective; Helen Morton, University Liquor; Nathan Robinette, The Casual Pint Franchising Inc.; Jorge Sanabria, ExpoQuip; Justin Sterling, Conversion Properties; and Zak Weisfeld, Lusid Media - will be missed.
They contributed. They shared. And they say they’re glad to have served.
“Being a member of the BAC has been a rewarding experience for me,” Sanabria said. “In addition to the knowledge I have gained through this experience, I have met wonderful people who also enjoy investing in our beautiful city.”
Sterling said he'll be able to pass along to others the insights and knowledge he gained.
"A city's policy and processes impact the business community in so many different ways," he said. "Serving on the BAC has been an incredible opportunity to learn about the layers of problem-solving a city may need to work through to accommodate the needs of the businesses and their customers.
"I've been inspired by others on the committee, and gained valuable relationships and knowledge that I will be able to pass on. A city that is engaged with the people is a city that I am proud to be a part of. The BAC is one of many connection points that contribute to Knoxville's vibrant economy."
In summer 2015, 12 new members joined the Business Advisory Council. Those members' two-year terms end in August, and 12 new members will join the Council then.
Members of the BAC serve in an advisory and partnership capacity to promote regular and open communication between City government and the business community. The BAC aims to provide advice and feedback to the Office of Business Support; to bring issues and concerns related to doing business in and with the City of Knoxville to the attention of the City administration; to propose responses and solutions to address these concerns; and to serve as a sounding board for City initiatives and proposals affecting the business community.
To nominate someone to serve, please contact Patricia Robledo, Business Liaison, Office of Business Support, by calling 865-215-3155 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Members of previous Business Advisory Councils have also touted the benefits of advising City officials and interacting with peers.
“Serving on the Mayor's Business Advisory Council provided insights into how, and why, a city intentionally invests to lay a solid foundation for enabling economic growth,” said Tom Catani, Vice President, US Cellular.
Joe Petre, President of Conversion Properties, agrees.
“The BAC gave me direct access to how City policy is created and why it is necessary,” he said. “The Mayor’s Office also allowed us to be a focus group for certain policies or initiatives that City government was working on. It was productive and informative.”