Meet The Team

We’re not here to foster the latest tech titan or discover the newest billion dollar business. We’re here to support the local restaurants, contractors, salons, and other businesses that help to make our community great.

Your Bookkeeping Experts

Desi Taylor

Founder, Executive Director

She/Her/Hers; Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor

Born and raised in Kalamazoo, Desi is the founder of multiple businesses, including Kalamazoo Start-Up Center and Cluventure Travel. In 2019, she graduated Cum Laude from Western Michigan University in Social Psychology, Spanish, and Entrepreneurship. Desi has participated in many small business accelerator programs, including WMU’s Starting Gate and WMU / Michigan Tech’s Integrated Customer Discovery Program. She was awarded 1st place in WMU’s 2018 Bronco Pitch Competition, 2nd place in PitchZoo’s 2018 Pitch Competition, and was the 2018 recipient of WMU’s Wendell Christoff Award for Entrepreneurship. During her time at WMU, she served as President of the PeaceJam Mentors RSO and earned the opportunity to give opening keynote speeches for multiple Nobel Peace Prize winners. Her businesses have been featured in National Geographic Traveler, The Travel Channel, Frommer’s Travel Guide, various WMU magazines, and even a textbook about logical creative thinking in commerce – all before the age of 30. For the last 7 years, she has trained extensively in the areas of bookkeeping, business finance, and small business structure and compliance. In her free time, she is a musician, foster parent, pinball wizard, and master jigsaw-puzzler.

Noah Oesterle

Account Manager

He/Him/His; Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor

Noah moved to Kalamazoo to study at Kalamazoo College, graduating in 2010. He holds degrees in Economics, Business, and History, with a specialization in Small City Microeconomics and Urban Development. Noah has nearly 10 years of experience managing over $40 million of inventory for a major corporation, and has even worked as a professional poker dealer. If there are numbers around, you can bet that Noah will count them. After working for large corporations for many years, Noah decided to switch gears in order to focus on helping small businesses succeed. Noah believes that small businesses are the heart and backbone of a community and brings a whole new level of energy and passion to the KSC team. His hobbies include pinball, poker, and watching too much Star Trek.

Blaine Carney

Technical Operations Manager

He/Him/His; Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor

As a certified Electronic Security Networking Technician with over 8 years of experience in the security industry, Blaine is Kalamazoo Start-Up Center’s resident tech support guy. He uses his knowledge and experience with networks to keep our client’s information safe and secure. He has a unique ability to organize information, solve problems, and dive into the small details that make a big difference. When he isn’t configuring some kind of software, Blaine is crunching numbers, breaking hearts, and perfecting the art of the spreadsheet. He has a passion for helping people and joined KSC to put his passion to work for his community. Blaine is an excellent logical thinker and communicator –  if you need someone to help explain the rules of a new card or board game, Blaine is your guy. His hobbies include video/tabletop games, running, and playing pinball. He has one dog, two cats, and a fish that do not pay rent. Although he prefers “staycations”, one day he would love to travel to Japan and try those really fluffy pancakes.

Jarrod Wong

Junior Account Manager Intern

He/Him/His

Hailing from Malaysia, Jarrod embarked on a journey to Kalamazoo to to pursue a degree in Finance. As a senior set to graduate in Fall 2024, he brings a fresh perspective and hunger for knowledge in the workplace. With a background as a professional bike mechanic, Jarrod thrives on helping others, now channeling his passion into helping businesses aiming to make a positive impact in our community. Beyond the world of Finance and Accounting, he’s a formidable force in the gym, enjoying weightlifting and bodybuilding. In his downtime, he immerses himself in the world of anime and TV shows.

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The Kalamazoo Start-Up Center strives to create an environment of inclusion and does not disciminate based on race, age, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, marital/family status, nationality, disability/health status, political opinion, national/social origin, or economic/social status.

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