Executive Director for The Creative Coast
Jake Hodesh is the executive director for The Creative Coast, a Savannah-based not-for-profit entity charged with helping create Savannah’s future.
A native of Ohio, Jake comes to Savannah by way of New Orleans, Washington, DC and Costa Rica. He earned a BA in International Affairs from George Washington University and studied language and international development at Universidad Veritas in San Jose, Costa Rica.
In 2003 Jake was managing property contracts for Tulane University when Hurricane Katrina swept through New Orleans, wiping out most of the city as well as Jake’s job. He bounced back by landing a policy analyst position with The White House’s U.S. Trade Representative’s Office of the Americas in Washington, DC. In 2007, Jake relocated to Savannah where he co-founded three companies, Refuel Savannah, Thinking Cap Inc., and New Moon of Savannah. Along the way, Jake co-founded and launched the first annual Geekend event, an interactive conference that has since attracted thousands of attendees and guest speakers to Savannah.
In 2010 Jake was recruited to re-invigorate The Creative Coast, a local organization which was struggling to find purpose and value as a multi-faceted economic development and culture-building organization for Savannah’s knowledge-based businesses.
Under Jake’s tenure and the guidance of a dedicated advisory board, The Creative Coast is now fully engaged as a connecting agent and culture-facilitator for Savannah’s growing tech and creative industries. Its official mission is “to nurture members of the community engaged in creative or innovative endeavors and to
cultivate an environment in which they can thrive.” Funding partners for The Creative Coast include The City of Savannah and Savannah Economic Development Authority (SEDA).
Some of the many “community” and “culture” connections which The Creative Coast has been instrumental in launching, managing and supporting over the past three years include TEDxCreativeCoast, FastPitch, StartUpLounge, Free Advice Fridays, HipCalendar.com, and WiFiSquared.
The Creative Coast’s website, with its focus on content relevant to the local tech community, attracts more than 14,000 visitors per month and its blog is read by more than 10,000 fans each week. As a bi-weekly columnist for the Savannah Morning News, Jake puts the spotlight on issues, trends, events and people of
interest to the local tech and creative communities.
With dozens of projects and activities in motion every week, The Creative Coast is helping build a true community for Savannah’s tech and creative citizens.