What is the Gig Economy? 

The gig economy is a flexible employment system based on temporary job positions and short-term arrangements between an organization and an independent worker.

Around 57 million people or 34% the US workforce was somehow involved in the gig economy pre-pandemic and even though the pandemic affected the gig worker initially, the number of gig workers increased by 33% in 2020.

This is a huge expanding segment of the US economy and our panelists will discuss how you can join in, avoid the pitfalls and survive and thrive in the growing gig economy.

Join us on Wednesday, May 19, 2021 for this FREE ONLINE EVENT.

This program will be moderated by Doug Lynch, principal at The LYNCH Group.




  • Kyle Ashby, Founder, Sandbox
  • Liz Oertle, CEO, Nanno
  • Trent Bigelow, CEO, Abound

About the Speakers

KYLE ASHBY, Founder, The Sandbox

Kyle is the founder of THE SANDBOX Santa Barbara ( and THE SANDBOX Paso Robles (, coworking, shared office and event spaces providing an environment and community for area entrepreneurs, remote workers, small businesses, nonprofits, consultants at the intersection of tech, creative management, the environment, and lifestyle brands.

Ashby also founded and runs Travel In Company, which provides a unique innovation and entrepreneurship curriculum and tours for adults and students through their Startup Summer Camp ( program.  Startup Summer Camp’s programs are based in Santa Barbara, Los Angeles, and San Francisco.  He is also the founder of Startup Santa Barbara, an entrepreneurial network that connects and assists area entrepreneurs, startups and investors.

With years of experience as a freelance designer and project manager, he has been involved in the gig economy for many years.


LIZ OERTLE, Co-founder & CEO, Nanno

Liz Oertle is passionate about leveraging emerging technologies to solve the real-world problems of everyday people – especially parents and families. As CEO of Nanno, the first nationwide on-demand marketplace app for connecting parents with vetted babysitters, she works on the front lines of the gig economy. Since launching in 2017, Nanno has connected thousands of sitters with gig work in the child care space nationwide.

Before starting Nanno, Liz was a startup lawyer, and before that, she was a freelance copy editor for Penguin, Random House, and several smaller book publishers.

Liz received her bachelors’ degree in English and Creative Writing from Binghamton University (State University of New York) and her JD from the University of Michigan Law School.


TRENT BIGELOW, Co-founder & CEO, Abound

Trent Bigelow is co-founder and CEO of Abound, the independent benefits API for those serving independent workers. Abound’s developer-friendly API enables our partners to quickly and effortlessly embed benefits into their products, setting aside enough to cover taxes, retirement, healthcare, insurance, PTO, and more. Trent leads the company’s strategy to increase wealth and wellness for 68 million self-employed Americans, unlocking access to independent benefits in an easy, affordable, and compliant way that works for everyone.

Outside of Abound, Trent serves as a Beachheads Advisor to New Zealand Trade & Enterprise, the New Zealand government’s international business development agency. Trent is also a member of the Aspen Institute’s Benefits21 leadership group in its work to modernize the design and delivery of benefits to ensure the financial security and economic dignity of all workers.

Years of freelancing as a User Experience Researcher gave him a first-hand understanding of the challenges facing independent workers and those that pay them.



Event Date:  Wednesday, May 19, 2021, 6:00 PM – 7:30 PM

Where: ONLINE ZOOM EVENT(Click here to register or sign-up below) 


  • 6:00 – 7:00 PM: Panel Discussion
  • 7:00 – 7:30 PM: Q&A
  • 7:30 – 8:00 PM: Preciate Social Networking (Click here to join social)
    (* Currently, the Preciate Social platform does not work on mobile devices or tablets, only laptops, and desktops.)

NOTE: Everyone who signs up for the online event will receive their own link upon registration.
Do not share your link as it is unique ONLY for you.

Online event registration is for Gig Economy powered by Eventbrite


MIT Enterprise Forum of the Central Coast is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization. We strive to put together programs that not only educate but encourage and motivate our community to continue growing successfully in their entrepreneurial journeys.

We would like to thank you all for your continued support.

Recommended Posts
Contact Us

We're not around right now. But you can send us an email at [email protected] and we'll get back to you, asap.

Not readable? Change text. captcha txt

Start typing and press Enter to search