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INVEST Finalist – Dr. Jay Crawford, Rockhopper ZSG

INVEST is the annual business competition for veteran entrepreneurs sponsored by The Lawyers of Brown & Roberto. This week we are featuring the three finalists on our blog. Each will make their pitch “Shark Tank” style at the TVBA Business Expo on Tuesday, January 27 and the winner will receive a $5,000 grant from The Lawyers of Brown & Roberto.

Dr. Jay Crawford grew up in Florence, AL and attended West Point Military Academy. After graduating in 1988, he spent the next 20 years in active duty as an orthopedic surgeon with the Army.

When he retired from active duty in 2008, he says there was no question about where the family would settle down. “When your wife (a Knoxville native) follows you faithfully around the world for 20 years, you definitely feel like you owe it to her,” Crawford says of the move to Knoxville. Now, seven years later, they have no regrets about the decision. Dr. Crawford is part of Knoxville Orthopedic Clinic.

Through his medical practice, Dr. Crawford saw a need for better communication between doctor and patient. The need led him to develop NextDocVisit, a software package that not only maximizes profits for the physician’s practice, but is also proven to increase patient satisfaction and loyalty.

NextDocVisit functions as a branded patient interface for the practice that patients can use on their computer, tablet, or smartphone. The data input by patients is analyzed and organized in real time by an algorithm customized to the specific needs of the practice. Patient requests are accurately categorized to optimal service line, level of provider, urgency of need, and location of visit. In this way, patients with the most urgent needs get seen quickest.

Dr. Crawford founded his company, Rockhopper ZSG in February of 2013 and began selling NextDocVisit in March of 2014. If Rockhopper ZSG were to win the competition, Dr. Crawford says he would spend the $5,000 prize to hire a startup consultant to help lay the foundation of the company. “Right now, I am the company,” says Crawford. “I really could use some help planning our organizational structure.”

Dr. Crawford is grateful for the opportunity to be a part of INVEST. “The Business Bootcamp has been awesome and it’s been great to learn from those with more experience,” he said.

In addition to the knowledge he’s gained, being introduced to a network of entrepreneurs has also been a valuable experience, and the cash prize is a nice bonus. “It motivates you to be a better businessman, to make your company better and to make a more attractive pitch to potential investors,” he explained.

The Lawyers of Brown & Roberto are grateful to Dr. Crawford for his service to our nation. Cast your vote for Rockhopper ZSG on the Brown and Roberto Facebook page and make sure to catch his presentation at the TVBA Business Expo Tuesday at 1 pm at the Holiday Inn at World’s Fair Park.

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