Our Board of Directors
ChaTech is led by an expert and innovative group of technology executives and advocates who are committed to growing the technology sector in Chattanooga.
Austin, a native Texan, holds a bachelor's in business administration from Bryan College. Before coming to ChaTech, he served as the Chief of Staff for The Company Lab (CO.LAB), where he maintained operational excellence for the organization through program, project and process management, including managing and leading human resource, grant management, financial, budgets, human capital and strategic processes. Austin also served as the Director of Talent Engagement at the Chattanooga Area Chamber of Commerce, where he oversaw Chattanooga Chamber strategies for developing and retaining talent, including facilitating Leadership Chattanooga, Leadership Chattanooga Alumni Association, Young Professionals of Chattanooga, Protégé Chattanooga, and ChattaNewbies.
He serves as past president of the Rotaract Club of Chattanooga, a member of the Diversity Task Force for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Chattanooga, co-chair of the Advisory Council for Leadership Tennessee NEXT, and was a board member for ChaTech before stepping into the role for ChaTech.
Austin is a graduate of Leadership Hamilton County Schools program, where he experienced Hamilton County Schools in a unique way, Leadership Tennessee NEXT, focused on Tennessee’s existing and emerging leaders and spanning geographic and industry boundaries, and he completed ArtsBuild’s Holmberg Arts Leadership Institute, designed for individuals who share a passion for advancing and engaging with the arts in the community.
Melissa Phillips joined ChaTech in January 2018. She received her B.S. in Accounting and MBA from UTC. Melissa comes to ChaTech with 13 years of accounting experience in the long-term health care industry.
An accountant at heart, Melissa enjoys managing the financial aspect of ChaTech’s operations. She also enjoys interacting with ChaTech members and learning more about technology hot topics through ChaTech’s various programs.
Melissa lives in Ooltewah with her husband, Skyler, and two boys, Noah and Elliott. She likes traveling with her family and homeschooling her children.
Originally from North Georgia and back from living in Northern California, Jen LaRose has a Bachelor of Fine Art from the University of West Georgia with a concentration in Photography. Her marketing experience of 15 years spans from digital and social media to content creation and event campaigns.
Jen oversees all ChaTech marketing and community outreach including event marketing, updates on ChaTech happenings and reaching out to our Chattanooga Community to help them grow with ChaTech.
She lives in downtown Chattanooga and loves to meet with friends and enjoy a glass of wine.