1871 has added two new team members as part of an ongoing effort to provide more comprehensive services for our member companies. We look forward to the impact that these new hires will have on both our members and the greater Chicago startup community.
First, we have hired a recruiter to work with our member companies. This is in response to extensive conversations and surveying of our companies in which the need to hire talented people -- especially talented technical people -- was often mentioned. Not only is recruiting quality talent a major challenge for all growing business, but it is also a very expensive and time-consuming undertaking. Our plan helps to subsidize the recruitment process for our members.
Our incoming recruiter, Laura Fendrich, comes from an outsourced technical recruiting firm called Hirewell. This is significant because she will not bring only her recruiting talents, she will also bring the support and infrastructure of Hirewell as well as the thousands of solid candidates that the entire company has in its system.
Laura will be using her significant resources as well as some new resources at 1871 to oversee the entirety of the recruiting process. She will be onsite at 1871 and completely accessible to our membership on an appointment basis.
Second, we are pleased to report that we have hired a new, highly experienced vice president of programming, George Vukotich. George has extensive background in information systems and technology as well as education, including having served as a dean of a business school and in numerous high-level roles in IT and systems engineering. He has decades of experience in critical areas that are relevant to our startups and will be an outstanding addition to the 1871 team. He has also worked on a variety of military and veterans projects.
George will be starting on July 14th and will be leading our efforts to take our educational programming to the next level, including more mentorship and workshop opportunities, new events, and a much deeper integration of our educational programming with the needs of our members and our increasing number of corporate partners and sponsors. This will provide a more comprehensive framework for member companies, giving them greater access to potential investors and customers. We are extremely excited about this effort which we believe is one of the critical distinguishing factors between 1871 and the growing number of co-working spaces in Chicago.
We are excited to work with these talented new team members and welcome them to the team!