At our November lunch, Venture Connectors was excited to host a terrific discussion with serial entrepreneur Ricky Mason and angel investor Chris Redd, the founders of Rheddorick and Network + Chill, about how they came together to create a thriving community that connects the entrepreneurial ecosystem through inclusive storytelling and education.

They talked about where their careers have led them so far and the value of building skills in a variety of focus areas. They also shared the ways their needs  — coming from opposite sides of the startup community — intersected. They discussed the inspiration for their collaboration in 2019, and how they have navigated constraints from a social and cultural perspective.

Born and raised in Milwaukee, Chris is a Louisville technology ecosystem builder, investor, advisor and consultant with more than 14 years of business, health care and technology experience.

Born and raised in Louisville, Ricky is the founder BrainSTEM, an award-winning startup — which includes taking home the top prize in Venture Connectors’ 2020 Venture Sharks pitch competition. He has over 10 years of experience in system engineering, product development and business strategy. Before becoming an entrepreneur, Ricky launched rockets at NASA, built cyber networks for the CIA, and led AgTech research at the University of Kentucky.