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Tanya Conrath named associate director of Ohio University Innovation Center

From staff reports | Oct 25, 2016
Tanya Conrath.
Tanya Conrath. Photo credit: Ben Siegel/Ohio University.


Tanya Conrath has been named the new associate director of the Innovation Center, Ohio University’s high-tech small business incubator.

Conrath will help oversee operations for the incubator, including client services, facility management, staffing, fundraising, budget analysis and grant writing.

The Innovation Center serves local entrepreneurs by providing office, meeting and laboratory space with flexible lease options, as well as shared equipment. The incubator offers business coaching and access to funding opportunities and other resources to help startup companies grow. 

“As an Athenian with deep roots in the region, I’ve seen firsthand the significant impact that Innovation Center companies and graduates have on our economy,” Conrath said. “These companies create good jobs right here where we live—helping them access resources and providing guidance is critical to their success. I am honored to join this outstanding organization and its team of dedicated professionals and look forward to working with clients, colleagues and partners to continue to build a vibrant entrepreneurial ecosystem.”

Conrath joins the Innovation Center from TechGROWTH Ohio, a public/private partnership based at Ohio University’s Voinovich School of Leadership and Public Affairs. In her role as entrepreneurial ecosystem network manager, she oversaw the training and mentoring of regional entrepreneurs.

Conrath holds a bachelor’s degree in communication from Ohio University and a law degree from The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law. In addition, she has earned an Incubator Manager Certificate from the International Business Incubation Association (InBIA) and is certified in several other training systems.

Stacy Strauss, director of the Innovation Center, noted that Conrath’s training and expertise in the areas of law, entrepreneurial services and incubation management will position her well to work with the Innovation Center’s clients and partners.

“She is engaging, client-focused and uniquely qualified,” Strauss said. “We expect that she will be able to master the role and take on additional responsibilities with great efficacy.”

Created in 1983, the Innovation Center was the first university-based business incubator in the state of Ohio and the 12 th in the United States. The 36,000-square-foot facility is home to high-tech and biotechnology startup companies.

In 2016, the Innovation Center was named the Rural Incubator of the Year by The International Business Innovation Association (InBIA).  The center also has been recognized as a Top University Business Incubator in North America by UBI Global, an organization that benchmarks business incubators and accelerators around the world. In 2015, the program was ranked #8 in the North American region and #3 in the United States.

The Innovation Center is located at 340 W. State St. in Athens, Ohio. For general information, visit www.ohio.edu/innovation.