Why be a NAV Venture?

NAV is the first program of its kind in Georgia with the mission to make Cherokee County the #1 place in the state to start and grow a business. This program gives preference to scalable ventures located in the North Atlanta region with a working concept and beyond from the following high growth target sectors: Advanced Manufacturing, Healthcare, I.T./Technology, Makers/Inventors, Corporate Operations, Culinary, and Film/Media.

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The journey to becoming a successful venture is often rocky, and never linear – this program provides a team of mentors to alleviate the confusion and guide the entrepreneur to success through team mentoring sessions and office hours with Mentor Specialists.

NAV is a service provided by the Cherokee Office of Economic Development, through it’s Fresh Start Cherokee initiative, that is principled and based off of MIT VMS. This personalized program provides entrepreneurs with a mentoring team that will assist ventures in various stages.
Through hands-on mentoring, entrepreneurs will learn how to perfect their products and services, identify markets, build business organizations, seek funding, and grow as strong entrepreneurial leaders. The team mentoring approach provides a unique coaching experience to help ventures make informed decisions while being able to consider multiple perspectives from successful businessmen and women with different backgrounds. The success of this program is not only measured by starting and growing a profitable company but in providing a valuable learning process for entrepreneurs to gain the skills they need to be successful in the long run.

Once accepted into the program,  New ventures will pitch to the entire mentor base giving the mentors a chance to hear about the new businesses and their needs. The NAV Team then matches a team of mentors to the new ventures based on the needs of the entrepreneurs as well as the interests and expertise of available NAV Mentors.

How do I become a NAV Venture?

Please follow the “Apply Now” button below to fill out a venture application which will be reviewed during the quarterly application assessment period by the NAV Team. If your venture meets the program criteria, a NAV team member will be in touch to schedule an interview to learn more about you and your venture.

Typical Venture onboarding from application to the first mentoring session takes approximatley 10-12 weeks.

I’m a NAV Venture. Now What?

The NAV Program is unique in its structure in that it empowers ventures to request and run their own meetings. The real value of the program is the mentoring sessions with a team of diverse mentors. The venture sets the pace for how often they meet with a maximum of 2 meetings per month and a minimum of one per quarter. NAV ventures also have the ability to request a specialist to join their team sessions or request office hours with a specialist. The NAV team coordinates all these meetings for the ventures. 

Our mentors and entrepreneurs adhere to a strict code of ethics and guiding principles in order to protect participants on both sides of the table. These guidelines assure that all ventures will receive impartial and unbiased advice from their team of mentors.

NAV Mentorship Services

Unique opportunities to network with other NAV Ventures 

One-on-one Office Hours with Mentor Specialist (legal, product development, marketing, etc.)

Regular Team Mentoring 

Monthly opportunities to crowdsource solutions with the whole group of 26 mentors

Access to a Basecamp Team for regular communication with the mentor team.


Alma Coffee

Leticia Hutchins, Co-Founder COO
Harry Hutchins, Co-Founder and CFO
Al Lopez, Co-Founder and CEO

Shade-grown, farm-to-cup coffee. As 5th generation coffee farmers, we consider every detail in creating the perfect cup of coffee. The seeds, the plants, the roasting process, and the brew are all part of crafting coffee with soul.

American Pillar Growers

Clint Ober, CEO

American Pillar Growers grows and sell the American Pillar arborvitae as both liners and finished products that are available for pick/delivery.

Bethany Steel Supply

Steve Tucker, Founder

Bethany Steel Supply is a family owned and operated steel supply and fabrication company. After retiring from Cobb County Fire Department and moving to Cherokee County, Steve Tucker noticed he had to go back to Cobb County for all his fabrication needs. Tucker is now one of few to supply various metals and fabrication services within Cherokee County.  

Creative Critique

Joey Ruse, Founder

Creative Critique is  an online feedback platform that connects creatives to help them exceed expectations, empower success, and endlessly innovate.

Leap Space

Connor Kirk, Co-Founder
Gary Kirk, Co-Founder 

Leap Space is an Atlanta based company that offers customizable subscriptions to equipment such as 3D Printers, slicer stations, and filament lockers. 

MAS Innovations

Michael DelGais, Founder 

MAS Innovations designs and manufactures molecular air filtration equipment for industrial facilities.


Shalakay Gibbs, Founder

SuiteSciens implements systems that help midsize businesses streamline their process and scale their business.

The American Cuckoo Clock Company

Jodie Davis, Founder and Designer
Mark Rowell, Production

The American Cuckoo Clock Company is reinventing cuckoo clocks, an American family tradition.