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What does it take to reinvent a community, revive a local economy, and reinvigorate a workforce? In this five-part Work in Progress podcast series – Destination Tulsa: Tech Hub in the Heartland – we look at how Tulsa, Oklahoma, is embracing in-demand tech industries to do just that. At the heart of the effort is a strong foundation of education, entrepreneurship, health care tech, energy tech, and cybersecurity.
In the final episode of our Destination Tulsa: Tech Hub in the Heartland, we examine how Tulsa is attracting tech startups to the city, how it’s encouraging homegrown talent to build their businesses in their community, and how it’s retaining that talent to create a thriving and equitable economic base.
On a recent visit to Tulsa, I stopped by 36 Degrees North, one of three downtown co-working spaces where entrepreneurs, innovators, and remote workers can come in and grab a table or a conference room, or network. One of those 36 Degrees North spaces – called the Business Incubator – is located in City Hall. You might consider it Ground Zero for Tulsa’s tech reinvention. There I met two young tech startup founders, one from Norway and one a Tulsa native. I also talked with an entrepreneur who took Tulsa Remote up on its offer of cash to move there.
In this episode, you’ll hear from:
- Martin Lien, founder and CEO of VOLT, who explains how he ended up in Tulsa from Norway and why he chose to stay
- Ambrose Midget, founder and CEO of Fresh Fabrics, on the support she’s gotten from the tech community as she grows her new tech business
- Kian Kamas, executive director of Tulsa Authority for Economic Opportunity, on how growing strategically requires investing in public resources
- Tyrance Billingsly, founder and executive director of Black Tech Street, on inspiring Black youth and showing them they have a future in tech in their hometown
- Dustin Baker, founder and CEO of Baker Lewis, on why he took up the Tulsa Remote offer to relocate to the city and how it changed his business
- Justin Harlan, managing director of Tulsa Remote, on how the pay-to-relocate initiative is changing the future of Tulsa
You can listen to the full conversation here, or look for the Work in Progress podcast wherever you get your podcasts.
Destination Tulsa: Tech Hub in the Heartland is made possible by the support of Tulsa Innovation Labs.
Episode 223: Destination Tulsa – Attracting and Retaining Tech Startups
Host & Executive Producer: Ramona Schindelheim, Editor-in-Chief, WorkingNation
Producer: Larry Buhl
Executive Producers: Joan Lynch and Melissa Panzer
Theme Music: Composed by Lee Rosevere and licensed under CC by 4.0
Music for Destination Tulsa series: From Bensound.com
Download the transcript for this podcast here.
You can check out all the other podcasts at this link: Work in Progress podcasts