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The original item was published from 7/25/2023 11:10:00 AM to 8/25/2023 12:00:03 AM.

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Posted on: July 24, 2023

[ARCHIVED] Oregon City Biz Pod Graduates First Class

Bid Pod Group Shot for new website

A group of six Oregon City business owners recently completed a unique technical training and mentorship program created by the Oregon City Economic Development Department for startup businesses or ones poised to create a new product or service component to their existing business. 

Oregon City BIZ POD Program is an exclusive entrepreneurial technical/education program with a curriculum crafted to help the participating business owners be more resilient and better equipped to operate their new respective ventures during the earliest stages of development. More than 20 businesses applied to the BIZ POD Program and only six were invited to participate.

The seven-week program focused on topics such as technology data applications, logistical business operations and process flow, hiring best practices and the use of financial data to make informed business decisions before it’s too late, among others. Each session was led by a different business advisor and mentor, experts in their field. 

"Our goal was to provide a unique technical/educational experience that helped participants gain the knowledge and skills they needed to succeed and be resilient," said James Graham, Economic Development Manager. "Applicants were chosen for their tenacity, mental focus, willingness to learn and capacity to apply new concepts to their business venture.”

After successfully completing the seven-week course, each participant will have excess to free mentorship services from the expert advisors for the next six months. Each participant also received a $3,000 grant that can be used to further enhance their business venture. 

The graduates from the inaugural BIZ POD class were:

  • Crystal Pyatt, Owner and chef at Sweet Masterpiece, an artisanal bakery and confectionery chocolates.
  • Jacob Kuhn, Founder of tWine, an emerging mobile wine experience for special events and private tastings.
  • Jessica Macklin, Professional Counselor and Executive Director of Northwest Treatment, a behavioral health service that offers a range of outpatient services
  •  Joanna Strahm, Founder of Small Baking Company, a bakery using seasonal and locally sourced ingredients 
  • Joe Henney, Founder of Henney Design, an industrial design venture
  • Kenny Baker, Founder of Sh’mallow, the first toastable marshmallow in a whipped cream canister

Economic Development Officials said the second Oregon City BIZ POD is projected to begin this fall. 

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