Bess Auer: Ex-teacher parlays blogging into tech business venture

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Author: Richard Burnett
Publisher: Orlando Sentinel
Date: August 24, 2014

Bess Auer, 44, is a Winter Park entrepreneur, blogger and event organizer. She recently became the first woman to complete the Starter Studio mentoring program for startups. A University of Florida graduate and former English teacher at Park Maitland School, Auer founded the popular Central Florida Top 5 blog and the Florida Blogger & Social Media Conference. She spoke with Sentinel reporter Richard Burnett.

CFB: How did your blogging turn into a business venture?

I had been teaching middle-school English for almost 17 years when I started blogging. I decided to attend blogger conferences in places like New York and Chicago and felt like Orlando needed to have a conference of its own. I knew we had a huge blogging scene here — it was just a matter of bringing people all together. We held the first one at the Park school gym and more than 100 attended, so many that we had to find a bigger space. We had 325 last year at Full Sail University, with a waiting list of 150. Read more here.