Growing Up and Going to Portland

October 5, 2014 By Tom

No, I’m not moving.

But I’m growing up. My company is growing up. My vision is getting taken to the next step. My passion, management style and intensity is being matched by a new person on the Nine13 team.

Pending all the legal stuff (getting stuff filed in Oregon, updating all of our business policies, expanding our insurance coverage and a million other things), we’ll be launching Nine13 PDX in very early 2015. We’ll have the equipment in place there over the next 4 weeks and then be working on the behind the scenes logistics to gain entry into the school districts and corporate partners in that area.

I took this photo last time I was in Portland outside a bookstore downtown–seems fitting today!

I’m fortunate to have found a great partner to help tackle this new branch and I truly believe that Charlie is such a great equal to be running our PDX and ultimately, Northwest/West Coast operations.  He’s going to take on the executive director title for the PDX area while I maintain my title for the Indy office and officially take the title of CEO of Nine 13, Inc (something I’ve always been but never used the title for).

There are a ton of cool things about how we’re doing this, Nine13 PDX will be a direct connection to Nine13 Indy and will operate very similarly. It will allow us to use the model and platform I’ve built here and attempt to replicate it in a new city. Most importantly, Nine13 Indy and our parent organization, Nine 13, Inc., will not be putting any existing financial resources into the start of the PDX office. PDX is being funded from new relationships in the Portland region to begin with and ultimately this relationship will allow Nine 13, Inc. to go after larger national grants and national marketing dollars that don’t want to be single market focused in a way that will benefit both cities.

So what changes for me? I now have the ability to take the next step in growth which is something that our organization has clearly been busting at the seams for over these last few months. It gives me a chance to expand our relationships across the country and continue to put our stamp on how youth fitness programs can run.

Most importantly, it allows me to have a peer in the company that is tackling the same things I’ve been wrestling in day to day operations. It gives me what I had hoped my original co-founders would have provided, but didn’t. It gives me an opportunity to expand the message of Kids Riding Bikes into a new city, and build the framework to expand into new cities beyond that.

If this works as well as I hope, Chicago and Seattle would be on our radar towards the end of 2015/early 2016. This gives us a home base to run each expansion that is less than 3 hours away from those cities and a strategic command post for visibility.

I’m excited for this new challenge, I’m excited to continue to expand our programs and refine little things along the way.

And of course, I’m excited to visit Portland on occasion and enjoy some of my favorite beer from Rogue and Widmer Brothers….but that’s just a perk of the job.

Welcome to the team, Charlie, I can’t wait to get this party started!