Julie Kunkle

Julie joined the SC Department of Commerce Office of Innovation in February of 2020 primarily for the purpose of running the Relentless Challenge grant program.  Originally from New York, Julie started her career in advertising with Gannett Newspapers.  Seeing the future was not in print, but rather in the young, new world of the internet, Julie took the leap to work for AOL.  Starting back in AOL’s CD days and rising through the ranks was thrilling as the entrepreneurial spirit at AOL was everywhere!  Each day there were so many new people joining the company and so many new product innovations. From kick-starting the first paid online advertising program at AOL to working in strategy, account service and project management, Julie has worked with an incredible mix of clients including Dell, Johnson & Johnson, Pepsi, Verizon and even the group Metallica. In addition to AOL, Julie worked with marketing companies developing high-impact advertising and promotional programs that often exceeded customer engagement and acquisition goals. Julie brings her experience to the Department of Commerce to help support South Carolina’s efforts in its relentless pursuit of transformational ideas.

The idea that Julie can be a part of the Office of Innovation’s efforts to mobilizes the dynamic flow of resources and information among people, industries and institutions for the prosperity of South Carolina citizens is what drew her to the position of Grants Administrator.  She very much looks forward to starting each day with the prospect of being able to help innovators, and the organizations that support them, move closer to achieving their goals.  Julie’s goal is to uncover new opportunities and collaborations that continue to grow South Carolina’s innovation ecosystem.

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