The founder of an Appleton startup called Dodles says enthusiasm for entrepreneurship in the Fox Valley area is on the rise, though challenges persist.

Craig Doriot is the CEO and founder of Dodles and also leads a second spin-off venture called Pound Social. Dodles is a social platform that aims to make the digital animation process easier, and Pound Social helps people and companies grow their online presence and reach.

“Even though we’re a smaller community compared to Madison and Milwaukee, we have a pretty good young population and a pretty educated population,” he said in a recent interview.

Doriot noted startup leaders looking for talented workers benefit from nearby Lawrence University in downtown Appleton, UW Fox Valley, as well as UW-Green Bay to the north and UW-Oshkosh to the south.

He’s brought on several interns from Lawrence that he ended up hiring down the line.

“We’re in a pretty strategic place for good talent, and we’ve been able to leverage that with some of the local schools,” he said.

Still, he says startup communities in northeast Wisconsin often find themselves at odds when it comes to working together to solve common issues.  Read the full story here.