How Startup Waco Came To Be

Startup Waco was formed when a team of independent thinkers, spanning all sectors of the Waco community, came together around one belief: If Waco, Texas would continue its pioneering legacy and transform into the next premier Texas city, we needed to formalize an entrepreneurial ecosystem.

Through a strategic partnership between the public and private sectors, Startup Waco was born. Now, as a 501c3, Startup Waco serves the Greater Waco community by creating a thriving culture of entrepreneurship. Designed with an inclusion mindset, Startup Waco champions entrepreneurs of all types by breaking down traditional barriers, collaborating with like minded institutions and filling gaps. Out of a physical space in downtown Waco, Startup Waco hosts a coworking environment, runs meaningful programs designed to support local businesses and operates as a hub for the Waco business community.

Meet the
Waco Team

Our team is eager to meet you and find out how we can better serve you.


Ashley Olivarez

Membership and Events Manager
Habla Español

Cody Carlson

Development Partner

Victoria Bingaman

Capital Access Manager

Jon Passavant


Elaine Botello

Operations and Human Resources

Kailey Towns

Director of Communications

Emily Miller

Principal Events Partner

Jermaine Malcolm

Entrepreneur in Residence

Our Board of Directors

Catherine Ballas

Co-Founder and CEO of REFIT® Revolution

Andrea Barefield

Waco City Council Member, District 1

Kris Collins

SVP of Economic Development, Greater Waco Chamber of Commerce

Kyle Deaver

Partner, Deaver and Deaver

Chris DeLeenher

Co-Founder, Boaz Capital

Bacilio Garcia

Vice President, Alliance Bank Central Texas

Cameron Goss

President, Bowen Electric Co.

Tasmin McDonald

Owner, Mac’s Fry House

Doug McNamee

President, Field and Stream

Weldon Ratliff

Waco Business Leader & Philanthropist

Mark Reynolds

North Regional President, Extraco Banks

Sarah Roberts

President, KSR Capital

LaDainian Tomlinson

Pro Football Hall of Fame Inductee & Co-Founder of Tomlinson Ventures

Jeremy Vickers

Associate VP for Innovation and Economic Development, Baylor University


Let’s start
Something Great

If you’re an entrepreneur, you have come to the right place. From business formation and planning, to tactical support, to raising capital, we’re here for you.

Let’s Go


Our Partners
Give Back

We work collaboratively with like-minded corporations, institutions and organizations who share our vision.

Let’s work together

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