Author Archives: David Baugher

Want to launch your own social enterprise? Startup veterans have learned how to do well while doing good

Social enterprise

As founder of The Mission Center, Chris Miller knows one important thing about philanthropy. “Most people don’t go into nonprofit work because they are passionate about doing accounting,” he said. That’s why The Mission Center exists. Founded in 2010 and housed in the Cortex District of St. Louis, Miller’s brainchild specializes in outsourcing back-office operations for nonprofit organizations. That’s not ...

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‘Different businesses, different options’: Social entrepreneurs searching for cash have choice of sources


Galen Gondolfi doesn’t work for a traditional lender. For starters, his institution is among the few who would turn away a borrower for having too perfect a credit report. “If you come in with an 800 credit score and real estate collateral, we’re going to say, ‘We’re not the program for you,’” he said. But Gondolfi’s organization, called Justine PETERSEN, ...

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Missouri companies match fashion startups with tech, resources to bring designs to life

John Elmuccio, Jennifer Lapka, Jon Lewis

Fashion icon Ralph Lauren once noted that he didn’t design clothes. “I design dreams,” he said. That may be true, but turning dreams of a new clothing startup into the tangible reality of product hanging on a shelf can be a genuine challenge — even in fashion Meccas such as New York or Los Angeles. Still, there is a small ...

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High hopes, high risks: Running your own food business ‘not for everyone’

Fresh farmers market fruit and vegetable from above with copy space

When entrepreneur Rachel Kennedy ran a food truck called Plantain District, she wanted to move things to the next level but a standard restaurant wasn’t really what she was looking for. “I started thinking about a shipping container because that’s so similar to a food truck,” said Kennedy. “Just taking the mobility factor out of it made sense.” And that’s ...

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Investing in people: Ready to hire your first employee? Consider these factors first.


The owner of any new business is likely to experience many exciting “firsts,” but one is nerve-wracking enough to give even the most resilient entrepreneur a few sleepless nights. When do you hire that first employee? “I think that every hire I made, I thought I was going to run out of money,” recalled Anne Cull, founder of ThinkViral, a ...

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Wired world: Missouri-based startup pioneers’ software technology keeps other businesses growing and innovating

Bonfyre graphic

Technology is everywhere, and it often seems as though every entrepreneur wants to incorporate the latest gadget, platform or app into their operations. But finding the best ways to employ all of this modern-day wizardry to benefit their own operations remains a tricky challenge for many startups. A lot of companies offer solutions, but which ones are really bending the ...

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Closing the gender gap

The importance of branding and communication were explored during a panel moderated by Erika Ebsworth-Goold, WashU Public Affairs. Panelists included faculty members Hong Chen and Delphine Chen, and Dena Ladd, Executive Director of Missouri Cures.

Academics learn to turn research into profit-generating products with guidance from Washington University’s Women in Innovation & Technology program.

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