Tech Parks Arizona is pleased to announce the internal promotion of two team members. Tech Parks Arizona develops purpose-built environments customized to support businesses and facilitate university-industry interactions creating a dynamic community where startup companies and technology giants work side by side.
Casey Carrillo will serve as the Director of Strategic Partnerships for the University of Arizona Center for Innovation. In this leadership role, Carrillo will drive the development and management of strategic partnerships to fuel the growth and success of the business incubator network. Carrillo directs UACI’s regional cohort-based programming and Sponsored Launch program which provides scholarships for startups in coordination with community financial support. She also facilitates the American Made Challenge programming in coordination with the Department of Energy and the National Renewable Energy Lab.
“I am excited to expand UACI by fostering strategic partnerships and leveraging existing collaborations to drive progress and deliver exceptional value to our startups. There are many opportunities to strengthen our collaborations that will drive innovation and deliver exceptional value to our companies,” shared Casey Carrillo.
With a proven track record of cultivating mutually beneficial relationships, Carrillo has been an asset to Tech Parks Arizona since joining the team in 2020. Carrillo was promoted from Program Manager to Assistant Director for her dedication and commitment to excellence. An Arizona native, Casey Carrillo graduated from the University of Arizona with a Bachelor’s in Communications and a Master of Arts in Higher Education. Carrillo is active in the community and shares her expertise by serving on the board of directors for Tucson Young Professionals and SARSEF. She is currently pursuing her Ph.D. in Higher Education at the University of Arizona.
Jessa Turner has also been promoted to Associate Vice President, Marketing & Communications for Tech Parks Arizona. Having demonstrated talent and dedication during her tenure at Tech Parks Arizona since joining in 2004, Turner has advanced the organization through strategic marketing and communication activities. Turner’s comprehensive knowledge and ability to execute targeted communication campaigns have significantly enhanced Tech Parks Arizona's brand. As the Associate Vice President for Marketing and Communications, Turner will continue to raise Tech Parks Arizona’s reputation and expand market reach for UA Tech Park, UA Tech Park at The Bridges and the University of Arizona Center for Innovation science and technology startup incubator network.
“Marketing and communications are pivotal forces driving the growth and prosperity of our region. It is my privilege to share the remarkable tale of success and technological advancements achieved by the businesses we serve. The abundance of success stories within the parks are truly inspiring,” shared Jessa Turner.
Turner has been an active member of the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) and its vibrant network of local practitioners for over 15 years. She currently serves on the PRSA Southern Arizona Chapter board of directors and includes the following roles: Past President, Ethics Chair, Impact Awards Chair and Secretary. She is an award-winning PR practitioner, including winning the organization’s coveted Best in Show Award for multiple years. She also serves on the board of directors for Greater Tucson Leadership and values developing community leaders.
Carrillo and Turner are part of an extraordinary team that includes 16 people that have a combined 165 years of experience supporting university-based economic development activities by building areas of innovation and fostering tech collaborations with industry, government and university.
About Tech Parks Arizona
Tech Parks Arizona creates the “Interactive Ground” that generates, attracts and retains technology companies and talent in alignment with the research, mission and goals of the University of Arizona. Tech Parks Arizona directs the UA Tech Park, the UA Tech Park at The Bridges and the University of Arizona Center for Innovation, placing the highest priority on recruiting companies desiring connectivity to the University of Arizona.
About the UA Center for Innovation
The University of Arizona Center for Innovation (UACI) is a startup incubator network with outposts across the Southern Arizona region. For two decades, the program has directly served 235 companies, impacting thousands of entrepreneurs who have attracted $105.8M in capital. This is done by providing access to people, programming, and places that help entrepreneurs take their companies from idea to market. With the mission to fuel the Arizona economy, UACI works to help scale science and tech-based startups under the scope of Tech Parks Arizona creating university-based economic impact. The year 2023, marks the 20th anniversary of UACI which is supported by the following sponsors: the University of Arizona Office of Research, Innovation & Impact, The Boyer Company, WaFd Bank, Spencer Fane, The Town of Sahuarita, Optics Valley and the University of Arizona Eller College of Management McGuire Center for Entrepreneurship.