Ken Hays discusses the innovation economy in Chattanooga


The Innovation District was started in down town Chattanooga in 2015. It's about a quarter-mile radius right in the heart of the city.

The Enterprise Center manages the Innovation District.

"And we're spending time now trying to really make it a dense innovation economy workforce," Ken Hays, President and CEO of the Enterprise Center, says.

Ken Hays spends a lot of his time talking about entrepreneurship. We asked him how did this whole entrepreneurship movement got it's start here.

"I think it was extremely entrepreneurial," Hays said. "I think that you had a couple of entrepreneurs that said 'we needed to make this an entrepreneur friendly city', and I think we are still trying to do that."

Some of the people and organizations who have started and spurred this growth include The Lamp Post Group and CoLab, and companies such as Skuid and Branch Technologies.

The Enterprise Center is working to keep all of that momentum growing. Ken Hays says for that growth to continue here and in places across the country it's up to city leaders and private citizens to do the bulk of that work.

"I think we have a special place. We've learned over the years how to work together. It's been successful. I think we've got a lot more that we could and should be doing and i think we're working on that," Hays said. " I think the future is extremely bright."

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