By Carl Nathe
LEXINGTON, Ky. — Entrepreneurial activity in Kentucky is thriving these days with people across the Commonwealth working to develop their innovative ideas into businesses that compete in the broader marketplace.
And today’s generation of entrepreneurs can derive great inspiration from the stories of those who have come before them. That’s the theme of a recently published book put together by two young University of Kentucky alumni who are based in downtown Lexington.
Brian Raney and Luke Murray, co-founders of tech business incubator Awesome Inc., have collected the stories of former Kentucky governor, John Y. Brown Jr. of KFC; businessman and philanthropist Bill Gatton; broadcaster and collegiate marketing legend Jim Host; former UK president and founder of Projectron and DataBeam Lee T. Todd Jr.; and many others, and put them into a volume titled, “Unbridled Spirit: Lessons in Life and Business from Kentucky’s Most Successful Entrepreneurs.”
The common thread connecting everyone featured in the book is that all are members of the Kentucky Entrepreneur Hall of Fame.
“You don’t have to go beyond the borders of the Bluegrass State to find wonderful examples of individuals who dreamed big dreams, took chances, worked hard and prospered through their entrepreneurial activity,” Raney said. “Many of the people featured in this book came from working-class backgrounds and believed in the power of education and personal drive to help them achieve great things.”
Murray said when he arrives each day at Awesome Inc. on Main Street in Lexington he makes it a special point to look at the wall containing the photos of the hall of famers.
“It’s impossible for me not to receive an infusion of creative energy when I look at the pictures of these amazing men and women,” Murray said.
The book, released earlier this month, is currently on Amazon’s bestseller list.
Carl Nathe writes for UKNow (University of Kentucky news)
Photo by Jamie H. Vaught,