After a decade of service to the community, Ron Miller steps down
The Leon County Research and Development Authority (LCRDA), the managing entity for Innovation Park of Tallahassee announces the retirement of its Executive Director, Ron Miller, effective October 14, 2022.
“Ron’s impact on our vibrant and growing entrepreneurial ecosystem cannot be overstated. Through his collaborative leadership style, he made major contributions throughout our community. We will see major economic growth across North Florida for years to come that can be directly attributed to Ron,” said Bill Lickson, the Director of North Florida Innovation Labs.
Ron Miller served at the Executive Director since 2012, where he played an integral role in the progress of Innovation Park. Two of his major accomplishments include being awarded grants by the Economic Development Agency (EDA). The first grant was to partially fund the construction of North Florida Innovation Labs, the region’s first business incubator which is geared toward developing high-impact technology companies with specialized facilities to commercialize their products. Construction is currently underway with an open date slated for the beginning of 2024. Miller, and the LCRDA Board of Governors worked with other community partners to fully fund the $24M project.
Under Miller’s leadership, Innovation Park was awarded another EDA grant in October of 2022. The EDA’s “Build to Scale” program awarded the Park $725K to fund staff positions at North Florida Innovations Labs. These positions will provide essential business accelerator support services. “Ron’s parting gift to Innovation Park was securing a nearly three quarters of a million-dollar three-year grant which will help launch the new labs,” added Lickson.
Many other significant accomplishments occurred under Miller’s leadership, including:
- Creation of the non-profit corporation, Innovation Park, TLH Inc., a 501(c)3 created to help support early-stage companies
- Working with Danfoss through multiple expansions in Innovation Park
- Development of the central pond trail, a popular amenity within the park
- The restructuring of land and buildings in Innovation Park that provided better long-term investments for the Universities and Innovation Park
Miller was also a key advocate in the growing entrepreneurial ecosystem in Tallahassee. During his tenure, Innovation Park’s TechGrant competition grew to include a pitch night event which showcased local high-tech businesses among key community stakeholders. Since the start of this program, 31 companies in Leon County have benefitted from $512,000 in grant funding.
He also started TechTopics, an event that featured interesting technology and research being developed locally. He participated and chaired the Alliance of Entrepreneur Resources (AERO) and served on the Board and the Chair of Junior Achievement of the Big Bend.
Michael Kramer will step in as the Interim Executive Director. Miller will continue in a part time role capacity ensure a smooth transition.
“We look forward to working with Michael Kramer,” said Kevin Graham, LCRDA’s Board Chair. “We are at a place where we need to look at our structure and strategy. We need to assess how we can set our park up for upward trajectory and great success. Mr. Kramer has shown that he can help organizations identify solutions.”
A national search will be conducted to find Ron Miller’s permanent replacement.