Advent Electric co-CEOs Kevin Ramsey, left, and Nicholas Hodge, in front of their Knoxville office

Advent Electric Inc. co-CEOs Kevin Ramsey, left, and Nicholas Hodge, will accept the Tennessee Small Business Development Center’s 2021 Rising Star Award on Wednesday, March 16.

Knoxville’s Advent Electric Inc. will be honored Wednesday, March 16, by the Tennessee Small Business Development Center with its 2021 Rising Star Award. 

The Rising Star Award is the highest honor TSBDC has to recognize growing small businesses in the Knoxville area. The award honors business owners who have achieved sustainability and success and who contribute to the growth and development of Tennessee’s economy. 

“Advent has managed its operations through a difficult time, maintained a seasoned employee workforce and has made great strides in creating positive working relations with contractors in the East Tennessee area,” said Laura Overstreet, director of TSBDC’s Knoxville office, which is hosted by Pellissippi State Community College. “Co-Chief Executive Officers Nicholas Hodge and Kevin Ramsey have managed Advent through a difficult storm and have impressively returned the business to profitability in the current year and for the foreseeable future. Advent is a true success story due to the assistance provided by the Small Business Administration and the TSBDC.” 

Advent has been serving both commercial and residential markets in the East Tennessee area for over 20 years, with projects ranging from single-family homes to heavy industrial facilities. In addition to traditional construction services, Advent Electric has vast experience and expertise in specialty fields, including metering, load testing and analysis, major and minor restoration, electrical network reliability and electrical failure prevention. 

Hodge and Ramsey purchased Advent in 2019 and were off to a successful transition of ownership when the COVID-19 pandemic struck East Tennessee.  They sought the assistance of the TSBDC to help update their financial position and create a more accurate accounting system to report the company’s operating revenue.    

TSBDC CARES Act Consultants Larry Johnson and Gregg L. Bostick assisted Advent in obtaining more than $2.1 million in federal relief funding that helped the company retain 90 jobs during the pandemic. Advent also refinanced up to $1 million in commercial and building debt in early 2021, providing additional funds at lower interest rates and lower payments. 

“The guidance Larry and Gregg provided during uncharted times was invaluable and contributed to the ongoing success of Advent,” Hodge and Ramsey said in a statement. “We are very thankful for all the TSBDC, Larry and Gregg did for Advent during the COVID-19 pandemic and continue to do for us. The opportunity to have them in our corner was a blessing, and we are glad to have them on our team.” 

Advent has emerged from the pandemic with a significant backlog of profitable contract work. The service side of their business, which was significantly affected by declines in hospitality service contracts during the pandemic, is returning impressively, with Advent being awarded a state contract for servicing repair needs associated with Tennessee parks and recreational facilities.  Advent also has been awarded replacement lighting contracts from city and other government agencies to provide more efficient lighting options. 

Media are invited to join Pellissippi State President L. Anthony Wise Jr., Pellissippi State Executive Director of Economic and Workforce Development Teri Brahams, TSBDC team members and Advent staff and friends for an award ceremony at 10 a.m. Wednesday, March 16, at Advent’s headquarters, 5901 Walden Drive, Knoxville. 

For more information about Knoxville’s TSBDC and what the team can do for you, visit