Creative economy champion, Lars Hasselblad Torres, will lead Generator, Burlington’s maker space

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Lars will join Generator on October 27 from Vermont’s Agency of Commerce where he served as Director of the Office of the Creative Economy. During his time at the agency, Lars established a presence, visibility and standing by fostering strategic partnerships, putting support behind key events around the state, directing research and policy efforts and developing a communications platform.

Lisa Gosselin, Commissioner of the Department of Economic Development which oversees the Office, cited the Agency’s loss while acknowledging “the right move for Lars and a great opportunity for Generator and for emerging Vermont businesses.”

Lars brings an extensive knowledge of, and connections across, Vermont’s innovation ecosystem.

“This understanding of the spirit and role of maker spaces,” observed Generator board chair Michael Metz, “combined with his seasoned experience in technology and the arts, education and entrepreneurship makes Lars a great fit for the Generator at a time when we are laying new groundwork for our future direction and growth.”

“As a widely respected leader in innovation thinking, Lars brings the skills and experience needed to take Generator to the next level as a makers hub of entrepreneurial energy, creativity, and education,” added Mayor Miro Weinberger. “The City looks forward to working with Generator and Lars to accelerate Burlington’s creative economy and leverage new job opportunities.”

Generator is a design and fabrication hub at the intersection of art, science and technology that fosters a community of collaboration between artists, engineers, entrepreneurs and artisans. Located in Memorial Auditorium on Main Street, Generator offers a full suite of tools including electronic fabrication, rapid prototyping, jewelry, metal shop, and (forthcoming) woodworking. Generator members (50 strong and growing) and the community at large benefit from shared learning, companionship, and the cross-fertilization of ideas.

Prior to joining the Agency of Commerce, Lars served as Innovation Prize Advisor to the Office of Science and Technology at the US Agency for International Development; before that he led the design and development of the MIT IDEAS Global Challenge (http://globalchallenge.mit.edu). He was a founding faculty member of the Booker T. Washington Public Charter School for Technical Arts (http://btwschool.org), where he developed an award-nominated urban studies curriculum that integrated technical and fine arts frameworks to explore and understand the evolution of urban form. In 2012 he founded Local 64, Central Vermont’s first co-working hub, in Montpelier.

“I count it as a privilege to have been able to serve the State of Vermont,” said Torres, “And I am thrilled to roll up my sleeves and work with the Generator board, staff, members and allies to steer the growth and success of this remarkable asset in the months and years ahead.”
Lars lives with his family in northeast Vermont where he maintains a studio where he can often be found tinkering and making art with kids in the neighborhood.

Congratulations, Lars, and welcome aboard!

Media Contact:
Michael Metz, Generator Board Chair