Governor Greitens Announces New Innovation Task Force

June 19, 2017

Today, Governor Eric Greitens announced the launch of the Governor’s Innovation Task Force. The Governor has charged the Task Force with assessing the current state of innovation in Missouri, analyzing best practices from other states, and developing specific recommendations for what the State can do to promote innovation and new technology start-ups. Governor Greitens has asked the State’s Chief Operating Officer, Drew Erdmann, to sponsor the project with the help of the nonpartisan Hawthorn Foundation.  The Task Force will bring together private, nonprofit, and public sector leaders from across the State to help improve Missouri’s competitiveness. As part of its work, the Task Force will engage innovators, entrepreneurs, civic leaders, scholars, and others in workshops in St. Louis, Kansas City, Springfield, Columbia, and Cape Girardeau. The Task Force will complete its work by the end of August.

Governor Greitens released the following statement: “Accelerating the growth of good paying jobs is critical to Missouri’s future. Missouri must find smart, efficient ways to support innovation, entrepreneurs, and new technology start-ups. While Missouri has emerged as a hub for innovation in the Midwest, more must be done if we are to remain competitive and reach Missouri’s full potential as a national leader. The work of the Governor’s Innovation Task Force will ensure that Missouri’s strategy is informed by the best minds from business, nonprofits, and government.”

Dan Mehan, President and CEO of the Missouri Chamber of Commerce and Industry, released the following statement: “Start-ups are critical to Missouri’s success today and in the future. Missouri entrepreneurs are leading the way in St. Louis, Kansas City, Springfield, and across the state. Established high tech leaders like Microsoft are also recognizing that Missouri is a great place for them to build their businesses. But we have to keep pace. I look forward to working with other leaders from across the state to make the Governor’s Innovation Task Force a success.”

Donn Rubin, president and CEO of BioSTL, builder of the St. Louis bioscience industry, released the following statement: “I have seen firsthand the growth of entrepreneurship and innovation in Missouri during the past decade. However, we still have gaps and challenges to solve as we strive to be a global leader. I’m optimistic that the Task Force process, which is shaping up to be comprehensive and inclusive, will help define the State of Missouri’s roadmap to innovation-driven economic growth.”

See the Hawthorn Foundation’s website for additional information at: