Interior design firm grows through relationship-based strategies | Business Observer

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A degree in psychology isn’t required to practice interior design. But it can help. 

Tracee Murphy, CEO and principal designer of Sarasota-based interior design firm Trade Mark Interiors, pursued a career in design after first earning a psychology degree. “It wasn’t until I was out of college and had my own place that I started to find it and fall in love with it,” Murphy says. “I began to do my house, my neighbor’s house and neighbor’s cousin’s house. It just naturally evolved.”

Murphy went back to school to earn an interior design degree when she had two young children and a part-time job. After about five years of working in interior design, she realized her degree in psychology was coming in handy while she worked closely with clients, in dealing with conflict between spouses and navigating differing opinions on projects. 

Courtesy. The majority of Trade Mark’s work comes from

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Accelerator kitchen to offer food startups a place to scale up in Southwest Michigan

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BATTLE CREEK — Economic development organization Battle Creek Unlimited and St. Philip Roman Catholic Church in Battle Creek have come together for a project that embraces the identity of the Cereal City.

Just recently, their Southwest Michigan Accelerator Kitchen project got a major boost forward.

“Battle Creek has a history of food companies here — food is in the DNA of this city,” said Shabaka Gibson, vice president of Battle Creek Unlimited, a nonprofit that serves as the economic development arm for the city. “Because of that, we have a lot of food-related talent in the area and a lot of food business supporting assets. That combination has turned into a lot of really small, micro businesses that are getting started. 

“The impetus for doing this project was the fact that we had all these small food companies that had no place to grow.”

The desire to support late first

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