The Black River Innovation Campus (BRIC) in Springfield announced today that it has hired Trevor Barlow as its first Executive Director. Barlow was selected after a national search that produced over 130 candidates.
As Executive Director, Barlow will be responsible for leading the organization and implementing the strategic vision behind its three pillars: the computer science initiative, entrepreneurship center, and distributed work space. He will lead fundraising efforts, work with regional and national tech employers, and identify resources for and provide mentorship to entrepreneurs growing their companies from BRIC. He began working this week.
Peter Andrews, President of BRIC’s Board of Directors, said that Barlow encompassed all of the qualities the Board was looking for in this position. “In a field of well-qualified candidates, Trevor stood out. Not only does he have extensive experience with startup ecosystems and a solid understanding of high-tech innovation, as a Springfield native, his energy and genuine passion for this project and for revitalizing Springfield came through immediately. That combination and his background as a serial entrepreneur will help him to lead BRIC in creating this exciting tech ecosystem in Springfield.”
Barlow has spent his professional career in executive leadership positions related to software technology and development. Most notably, Barlow was the CEO of ConferenceEdge, a Colorado-based company that builds enterprise event software for the Fortune 500 and Associations markets. He received his degree from the University of Colorado at Boulder.
This position represents a return home for Barlow, who graduated from Springfield High School. He is excited about the opportunites that the BRIC project represents for the Springfield region. “Springfield is a special place, and BRIC is poised to have a significant impact on moving the regional economy forward,” he said. “I’m honored to have the opportunity to lead BRIC as we build and expand the digital economy ecosystem, establishing opportunities for innovation, entrepreneurship, education, and workforce development.”
The Black River Innovation Campus is leveraging Springfield’s 10 gigabit internet speeds – among the fastest in the country – to educate and train people in digital skills, employ them in digital economy jobs, and empower them to launch the startups that will drive Springfield’s digital economy. BRIC is a partnership between Springfield Regional Development Corporation, the Center on Rural Innovation, and local, state, and national organizations.
BRIC is currently establishing facilities at the former Park Street School in Springfield, with cowork space expected to open in the coming weeks. Recruiting is currently underway for a variety of tech-related positions to work remotely from BRIC for regional and national companies. Recruiting is also underway for a risk-free coding bootcamp run by the industry-leading Flatiron School. As part of the program, students will receive free access to BRIC facilities, where they can work alongside other enrolled students and receive additional in-person tutoring and support. BRIC is actively working on computer science educational initiatives in partnership with the Springfield School District as well as developing an entrepreneurship center for those looking to grow tech-related businesses. For more information, go to bricvt.org or follow BRIC on Facebook or Twitter.