This year’s Belmont Entrepreneur Awards celebrated 100 thriving alumni businesses. The fourth iteration of the celebration gathered entrepreneurs and members of the Belmont community to celebrate the hard work and achievement of Belmont entrepreneurs across the U.S.
The Thomas F. Cone, Sr. Center’s celebration of alumni is anchored by a commitment to spreading the entrepreneurial spirit to all corners of Belmont’s campus. By telling the stories of alumni founders, the Cone Center seeks to inspire current students, support those who have graduated, and build a thriving ecosystem rooted in the joyful and optimistic disposition that is at the heart of entrepreneurship.
In addition to celebrating the Top 100 entrepreneurs, the night highlighted several founders through story videos. We took a look inside Kristin Sweeting Photography (Kristin Sweeting ’10), The Nashville African American Wind Symphony (Ashley Crawford ‘14) , Tempo (Uriah ‘15 and Zylah ’17 Solis), Biscuit Love (Sarah Worley ’13, ‘15), and Soundstripe (Trevor Hinesley ‘12). These videos told the story of each founder and provided context into why and how their respective business was started.
The ceremony also honored founders who truly embodied the impact entrepreneurship brings to their community, peers, and industry.
Evan and Jenny Owens (‘05), founders of REBOOT Recovery, were recognized for their Impact on Community. Their work with REBOOT recovery serves those healing from trauma and mental health challenges in 40 states and 10 countries. Their model for recovery, which integrates clinical insight with faith-based support, is being recognized nationwide for its healing success.
Harry Allen (’04, ’10), co-founder of Studio Bank, was recognized for his Impact on Peers. Harry’s professional career has centered on leadership, mentorship, and empowering creatives in Nashville. Named recently as a “power connector” by the Nashville Business Journal, Harry’s disposition and innovative spirit animates his work at Studio Bank and in the Nashville community.
Logan Crowell (’16), founder of HOME—Helping Our Music Evolve, was recognized for Impact in Industry. HOME’s approach to connecting musicians, producers, technicians, and songwriters is changing the music industry in Nashville. Logan has created a doorway for arriving musicians and industry professionals to connect with one another to develop projects and make great music. His vision has disrupted Nashville’s music industry for the better.
In addition to the three Impact awards, several members of the Belmont community provided a hopeful vision for the future of Belmont. President Greg Jones and Rev. Susan Pendleton Jones reflected on entrepreneurship’s hopeful and optimistic place in the public square. Dr. Josh Yates provided a vision for the new Belmont Innovation Labs—a growing project that builds on the rich social innovation and entrepreneurial education at Belmont. Executive Director Elizabeth Gortmaker gave remarks celebrating the entire Top 100 list. And finally, Director of Alumni and Faculty Engagement Chip Hayner and The Massey School of Business Dean Dr. Sarah Gardial shared ways that current alumni can stay engaged with the entrepreneurial community at Belmont, highlighting the Jeffrey R. Cornwall Legacy Launch Fund.
This year’s award ceremony was an amazing chance to celebrate Belmont’s ever-growing community of alumni founders. We look forward to continuing the celebration of this year’s Top 100 in the year ahead. We’re grateful for all our entrepreneurial alumni and the inspiration they provide to current and future students.