Kailey Faber, Executive Director, CoLab Nashville
Kailey led the establishment of CoLab in January 2010 as the city’s first coworking space and has emerged as a thought leader and advocate for the coworking movement both nationally and in Nashville.
As the founder of CoLab Nashville, Kailey has played a large role in guiding the evolution of coworking in Nashville from its teach-heavy beginnings to its emergence and growth across mainstream industries.
She sees in the near future a business model even more focused on the benefits and necessities inherent in coworking: lean operations, creativity, entrepreneurship and the value of being part of a community.
“I am passionate about where coworking goes in Nashville,” Kailey said. “I want to see it take shape and really be an embedded part of our economic infrastructure. We are a collaborative, creative city – it’s no surprise we are, it’s the foundation for making and writing music – and because of that strong foundation, we are going to also be a hub of creative entrepreneurship.”
“The recession broke everything down,” Kailey said. “Today’s workers are mobile, and need flexibility. Coworking provides that, plus the community found in good traditional office environments. I have had people tell me their business has grown 10 fold since moving to coworking – not necessarily as a result of referrals stemming from being in the coworking space, but from the ingenuity of being in a coworking space.”Kailey has been involved in that journey from the beginning. Within CoLab’s first year of operation, it reached capacity. CoLab expanded and growth in the second year doubled. In March of 2013, the CoLab celebrated its third birthday.
Kailey has become a recognized participant in the national coworking movement and a fixture in Nashville’s growing entrepreneurial economy. She is a founding member of Nashville Coworks, a WorkIT Nashville advocate through the Nashville Chamber of Commerce and works closely with the Nashville Downtown Partnership.
She is a graduate from Belmont University.
“I foresee a coworking spot for every neighborhood in Nashville. I really think this is just the beginning of the movement.”
Ashley Eayre-Brammer, Community Manager, CoLab Nashville
When people ask about her role as community manager at CoLab Nashville, Ashley Eayre-Brammer often starts by dispensing with the most common misconception. Acting as liaison, advocate, sounding board and fixer to the ever-increasing constellation of companies, business professionals, non-profits and artists who call CoLab Nashville home isn’t where her job stops.
It’s where it begins.
Not only is Ashley the go-to professional resource for the more than 100 members of CoLab, she’s also the person who finds the often hidden intersections between the interests of CoLab members and those of Nashville’s formal and informal business, artistic, trade and tech communities.
If her role sounds complex, you’re starting to get the picture. It’s also a vital contributor to the CoLab effect – the boost in productivity, business opportunity and value-added community engagement so important to CoLab members.
Ashley manages to develop a nuanced understanding of the professional and avocational interests of CoLab members, and match them up with opportunities and avenues for engagement and collaboration in the larger community.
Your typical community relations gig it’s not. Yet Ashley pulls it off with the kind of ease and sincerity that only comes from a genuine passion for getting to know people. Lots of people.
Whether it’s as casual as seeing an artist’s latest piece and connecting it with a newly vacant downtown wall space, or pulling together and hosting a winning event for a CoLab member’s industry organization, Ashley makes things happen by connecting the community at CoLab.
Like the people she works with every day, Ashley sees herself as an entrepreneur with one key distinction: her capital is community. She knows she’s on the right track when the people who make up CoLab Nashville are feeling inspired and moving forward toward new growth and opportunity.
“CoLab is centered around the community philosophy that says, ‘I can get where I want to go and you can get where you want to go and we can each get more out of that experience if we do it together’.”
Ashley Eayre-Brammer is a graduate of Belmont University in Nashville