Driven by her passion for helping others, Autumn “Ace” Copeland first launched Threeye Creative (Now known as Quartz and Clay) to “crack the code” of traditional business models. Unlike other website design agencies, Threeye Creative specialized in HTML, CSS, and JavaScript for custom builds, not templates, giving them a clear advantage over overpriced cookie-cutter agencies.

The agency’s client-centric approach puts the small business in the driver’s seat by offering customized solutions that adapt to the changing needs in the market and the budgets of entrepreneurs. “I’ve always tried to run my company with the customer at the focal point of my decision making,” Autumn shares. “I strongly believe success comes from prioritizing people and placing their needs ahead of profits.” 

Threeye Creative began as most great companies do, as a side hustle. Autumn, a Nashville native, tried her hand at various career paths, from healthcare to songwriting (she was signed to Sony as a professional songwriter) before securing an internship at a local marketing firm. While there, Autumn first discovered her passion for coding.

“I had this insatiable curiosity to learn as much as I could about marketing software and design tools. When my company needed someone to do website design, I jumped at the opportunity.” As Autumn developed her coding skillset, she began designing logos and building websites to earn extra money to fund a summer backpacking trip to Europe.

Weeks after starting her side gig, Autumn’s clientele was growing, and so was her income. It wasn’t long before the money she made from her side hustle began exceeding her full-time job salary. Already fed up with corporate shenanigans, Autumn explored her options and enrolled in the Nashville Business Incubation Center’s Foundations class in 2018 to learn more about entrepreneurship. This 8-week program is designed to expose new and aspiring entrepreneurs to the basic business principles needed to run a successful company. Ron Harvey, the class instructor, encouraged her to start a business formally, which she did in November of that year. Autumn worked hard the next two years to build her business, and in 2020 was able to quit her job and pursue Threeye Creative full-time. Ron continued to mentor her and became her biggest advocate.

“When I sat down in my one-on-one with Ron, he said, ‘If you’re not making six figures next year, I’m going to be upset.’ I thought, ‘whoa, I can do this! This can be a real thing for me.’ NBIC not only had a positive impact on my business, but it is also the sole reason why I have a business. It was me walking through those doors and meeting Ron and Angela, who pushed me to buckle down and make it happen.” The NBIC provided the guidance and resources Autumn needed to create the foundation for Threeye Creative and the confidence to transform her side hustle into a fully operational web development agency.

In January 2021, Threeye Creative rebranded as Quartz and Clay. According to Autumn, the rebrand was necessary for several reasons, and the timing couldn’t have been better. “The business started as one entrepreneur specializing in web design and development but quickly evolved into an entire team of hardworking humans working together to provide digital solutions for strong businesses. To make a long story short, we outgrew the original name and its branding, which no longer represented us as a whole.”

Quartz and Clay meets businesses wherever they are in their journey and supplies them with the solutions they need to compete in oversaturated markets, utilizing technology, automation, and even AI. The inspiration for the name comes from two naturally occurring raw materials that can be carved, shaped, and sculpted into anything imaginable. Quartz and Clay now has dozens of 5 star reviews on Google and continues to expand, serving clients across the United States.

“As we grow, we will continue to stay true to our mission: to empower and educate business owners through technology and digital marketing solutions.”

Autumn’s journey has come full circle. She is currently in the Mighty Oak Program and now shares her expertise with other entrepreneurs as a guest instructor for both the Foundations and Groundwork marketing classes. “I want to help as many small business owners as I can. Knowledge is power and I teach my classes in a flexible way that allows each entreprenuer something they can walk away with to further their business.”

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Abigail DaSilva
Abigail DaSilva is the marketing coordinator at NBIC, channeling her passion and creativity to support the organization’s mission of leveling the playing field for entrepreneurs. A proud graduate of Tennessee State University, Abigail holds a degree in design, which fuels her artistic sensibilities and impeccable eye for aesthetics. Before joining NBIC, Abigail embarked on her own entrepreneurial journey alongside her brother, where she spearheaded the sales and marketing efforts of their own venture. This experience honed her skills in strategic promotion, customer engagement, and marketing media. Abigail has played a crucial role in the company, transforming their media marketing strategies, specifically towards a more video-driven approach. Recognizing the power of visual storytelling, she has created compelling content and innovative campaigns that have amplified NBIC’s reach and engagement, strengthening their online presence and impact. Outside of her professional endeavors, Abigail is an avid art buff, frequently visiting museums and exploring immersive experiences that combine technology and creativity. She also has a deep love for travel, shopping, and anything that allows her to utilize her creative mind. With her unwavering commitment and broad range of experience, Abigail is a valuable asset to NBIC. She remains eager to push boundaries, elevate engagement, and empower entrepreneurs through her exceptional marketing expertise.
Anne-Marie Tanner
Anne-Marie Tanner is the Programs Coordinator at NBIC. With a Master’s degree in strategic marketing from Midway University and a Bachelor’s degree in design from University of Kentucky, she brings a unique blend of business experience and creativity to her work. Prior to joining NBIC in March of 2023, Anne-Marie worked as a small business and startup consultant, where she gained valuable experience in guiding entrepreneurs through the challenges and opportunities of launching and growing their businesses. Her expertise in strategic planning and her ability to quickly grasp new concepts makes her a strong asset to the NBIC team. As the Programs Coordinator at NBIC, Anne-Marie manages multiple components, including Foundations, E-Myth, Framework, and Groundwork. Anne-Marie values collaboration and strives to align her work with the vision and expectations of her colleagues. Beyond her professional career, Anne-Marie has a wide range of hobbies and passions. She is an accomplished Olympic weight-lifter. Additionally, with her husband, she started a medical clinic in Martin, TN, a brewery and events center in Paris, TN, and an airbnb property. Their goal is not only to build successful businesses, but also to provide economic stability and job opportunities to as many people as possible. With her extensive background in business, her entrepreneurial spirit, and her commitment to personal growth, Anne-Marie Tanner is an extremely valuable asset to NBIC. Her diverse skill set and positive mindset make her a catalyst for success, both for herself and the new businesses she assists.
Saturnie Antoine
Saturnie Antoine has been a part of NBIC since November 2021, serving as the R.I.S.E. UP Program Manager. She holds a Bachelor’s degree and has obtained a professional certification in coaching skills. With a diverse background in corporate work spanning over 15 years, Saturnie has worked in various sectors. As the R.I.S.E. UP Program Manager, Saturnie oversees the entire program. Her responsibilities include structuring the curriculum, sourcing speakers, and organizing the launch campaign. Additionally, Saturnie provides personalized professional coaching to the program participants, offering guidance and support to help them scale their businesses to $1 million plus level. Since the commencement of the program in March 2023, under Saturnie’s leadership, R.I.S.E. UP has witnessed numerous accomplishments and successes. Additionally, the program’s focus on emotional intelligence has helped participants navigate internal challenges and overcome obstacles inhibiting their growth. Outside of work, Saturnie values personal time spent with her family and loved ones. Her true passion lies in her role as a professional coach, where she finds fulfillment in assisting women on their journey towards personal and professional growth. Saturnie’s commitment to her clients and her extensive experience, coupled with her excellent coaching skills, allows her to provide comprehensive support to program participants, enabling them to achieve their goals and reach new heights. Under Saturnie’s leadership, the R.I.S.E. UP Program continues to flourish and make a lasting impact on the lives of female entrepreneurs.
Leroy Cunningham
Leroy Cunningham currently occupies the role of Community and Capacity Building Manager at NBIC. He holds a major degree in Business Administration from Carroll University in Waukesha, Wisconsin, along with minor degrees in Accounting and Economics. Leroy’s prior engagement with business development consulting brings great strength to the NBIC team. He has worked at three of the largest market capitalization companies in the world – Emerson Electric, General Electric, and Berkshire Hathaway. In his current role as the Community and Capacity Building Manager at NBIC, Leroy wears many hats. One of his primary objectives at NBIC is to increase the number of small minority-, women-, and veteran-owned businesses qualified to undertake contracts from prime contractors and government entities. By fostering relationships with community partners and engaging with prime contractors and government entities, Leroy works tirelessly to bridge the gap and provide opportunities for these businesses to flourish. Additionally, Leroy dedicates his time to consulting with business owners, providing them with valuable insights and guidance. By helping businesses at their current stage and empowering them to reach their goals, Leroy greatly contributes to the growth and success of NBIC’s clients. Outside of work, Leroy indulges in his love for reading, sports, and travel. With his vast knowledge, dedication, and passion for community empowerment, Leroy is committed to making a meaningful impact at NBIC. His wealth of certifications and global business experience lends a unique perspective and expertise to NBIC’s initiatives, which will undoubtedly drive the organization forward.
Octavia Wilson-Simmons
Octavia Wilson-Simmons is the Special Project Coordinator at NBIC. With a background as a tank storage broker, Octavia acted as a vital liaison between storage terminals and cargo owners, facilitating contracts for the transportation and storage of products. Prior to NBIC, she also worked as a chemical operator at a chemical company, further enhancing her expertise in the industry. Joining NBIC in early 2022, Octavia initially served as an assistant to Angela before transitioning to her current position as a Special Project Coordinator. In this role, Octavia plays a crucial part in various projects, including MNAA and Elevate 615. She also provides invaluable support to the team, assisting with grants and streamlining processes to ensure efficient collaboration and coordination. Outside of her professional endeavors, Octavia is extremely family-oriented and cherishes family outings and spending quality time with her loved ones. Octavia is also a dedicated DIY enthusiast and seeks to immerse herself in various projects. Octavia embraces the opportunity to collaborate with the NBIC team, support Angela, and contribute to the company’s mission. Having witnessed the growth of businesses firsthand gives Octavia special insight into the entrepreneurial world and the hard work that goes into operating and expanding your business. With her extensive background in the oil industry and her unwavering dedication to assisting others, Octavia continues to make a positive impact within NBIC, among her peers, and within the entrepreneurial community as a whole.