About the Innovation Connector:
The Innovation Connector exists for one purpose: to help new entrepreneurs with truly unique business ideas turn their dreams into a reality. Our mission, vision, and guiding principles explain exactly what we do and why we do it.
To support and accelerate the creation of successful technology based and emerging companies in order to improve the economy of Muncie and east central Indiana.
To be a dynamic business incubation center which is recognized as a major contributor to the economic vitality of our area.
- Provide expertise to participants through advisors
- Leverage the resources of Ball State University, Ball Memorial Hospital, local government, and community partners
- Advance the entrepreneurial culture in our area
- Conduct business in a fair and ethical manner
- Create and attract jobs
- Connect entrepreneurs to resources and assistance
- Provide a supportive environment for participants
- Share knowledge between new and existing companies
The Innovation Connector became a reality when William Skinner became the organization’s first executive director. Initially, the Innovation Connector was located in a residential space on Marsh Street adjacent to Ball State University.
The first business, ANERIST, moved into the Innovation Connector. In 2004, the incubator expanded to three additional homes on Marsh Street.
The former Aero Forge property was designated at a Certified Technology Park by the State of Indiana. Soon thereafter, the Aero Forge plant was demolished to make way for new development on the site. Pathologist Associated Labs, and subsequently Whitinger & Company, an accounting and financial management company, built new headquarters on the site.
The Innovation Connector moved to an interim facility in downtown Muncie.
The Innovation Connector board of directors approved plans for the construction of a 15,000 sq. ft. facility to be located at the Ontario Place Certified Technology Park.
2008 – 2009:
The Innovation Connector’s headquarters was completed in the Ontario Place Certified Technology Park.
2010 – 2012:
The past several years have been an exciting time of change and growth. In 2010, the IC welcomed Ted Baker as the new Executive Director and promoted Lori Albert to Financial Director. During this time, the IC number of businesses that call the IC home has increased to over twenty businesses. In order to assist with this growth, the IC Board of Directors has added several new board members to assist in governance and to expand the impact of the work at the IC.
The Innovation Connector was founded by and has strategic partnerships with various academic, nonprofit, and corporate resources throughout the community. With their help, the Innovation Connector gives our clients access to a wide array of help to get their business ideas off the ground.
After graduation from Ball State University in 1980, Ted’s career journey has included management of small businesses, starting, growing, buying and selling businesses as well as assisting with the establishment of several area not-for-profit organizations. He is a Certified Incubator Manager with the National Business Incubator Association as well as a Certified StartUp Wheel business advisor. Because of his extensive business ownership experience, Ted offers a unique, practical, and realistic insight to business owners and potential business owners.
Lori serves as the Financial Director for the Innovation Connector. With twenty-six years of financial management in various businesses, Lori works with Innovation Connector clients by assisting with QuickBooks setup and management as well as payroll, accounts payable, and accounts receivable work. Lori also is responsible for the financial accounting for the Innovation Connector. She holds an Associates Degree in Marketing and Management from Ball State University.
Ronald K. Fauquher
President & CEO
IC Board Chairman
IC Board Secretary/Treasurer
Dr. Jennifer Bott
Dean of the Miller College of Business
Ball State University
President & CEO
IU Health/Ball Memorial Hospital
Dr. Rob Jeffs
Ivy Tech Community College
IC Board Vice Chairperson
First Merchants Bank
Manager – Community Relations
AEP Indiana Michigan Power
Associate Director, Technology Officer and Labs Manager
Center for Information and Communication Sciences,
Ball State University
First Merchants Corporation
IC Director Emeritus