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Leadership : Cincinnati In The News

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Cincinnati among top cities of the future in the U.S.


fDi Intelligence recently released its list of cities of the future, and Cincinnati made it, mostly in part to the flurry of tech and startup activity here.

New York came out on top of the national list, followed by San Francisco, Houston, Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver, Boston, Atlanta, Sao Paulo and Sunnyvale, Cali.

Along with the national list, fDi also looks at subcategories, which is where Cincinnati was recognized multiple times. The Queen City placed:
  • Sixth overall in Large Cities of American Cities of the Future
  • Ninth in Large Cities for Economic Potential
  • Eighth in Large Cities for Business Friendliness
  • Fourth in Large Cities for FDI Strategy

Foreign direct investment, or FDI, is a strategy that the City of Cincinnati's Department of Community and Economic Development is focused on to generate innovative financing, helping to close the financial gap and bring catalytic developments to the area.

A strong FDI plan enables the City of Cincinnati to create jobs, fill real estate and infrastructure gaps and open trade opportunities.

The rankings further reinforce Cincinnati’s visibility as a city well-positioned for global connectivity. On March 31, the Department of Community and Economic Development partnered with REDI Cincinnati to host an FDI symposium featuring key local, regional, national and international executives who came together to discuss the many facets and implications of foreign capital flows into the region.

A regional resource manual based on best practices and insights from the event will be compiled and shared based on ideas shared at the symposium.

Check out the full list of Cities of the Future here.
 


Butler County SBDC receives national award, celebrated on #SBDCDay


The Butler County Small Business Development Center recently received the 2017 National Small Business Development Center of the Year award. It celebrated its accomplishments on March 22, or #SBDCDay.

Over the past three years, the Butler County SBDC has generated over $20 million in loan funding to local small businesses. The Hamilton Mill-based organization helps build small businesses through a number of programs and activities — combined with strategic partnerships with other business-oriented groups — to provide a strong entrepreneurial assistance environment in Butler County.

The SBDC network was signed into law in 1980, and since then, the network has grown to over 1,000 centers. America’s SBDC network leverages a partnership that includes U.S. Congress, SBA, the private sector, and the colleges, universities and state governments that manage SBDCs across the nation. Each year, SBDCs provide management and technical assistance to about one million small business owners and aspiring entrepreneurs.

Read more about #SBDCDay here.

UC School of Law receives "A" grade from National Jurist, moves up in national ranking


In 2014, the University of Cincinnati College of Law was ranked by National Jurist as one of the top 60 law schools in the country. This year, UC's law school came in at no. 13 with an "A" grade.

Rankings are based on the school's experiential learning opportunities, with data provided by the American Bar Association and the individual schools. National Jurist looked at five categories: clinics, externships, simulation courses, interschool competitions and "other."

Clinical experience is most important, as students get the chance to work with real clients, under the direction of their professors. UC has a number of programs where students get this real-world experience, including a partnership with MORTAR that allows students to provide free legal counsel to clients

To read the article, "Best Schools for Practical Training," and to see the full list, click here.

 

Miami Ohio business students advanced to finals round of VCIC competition and took home second


A group of business students from Miami University scored big in the first round and took home $1,000 at the regional Venture Capital Investment Competition, held in Chicago. Miami was the only school in Ohio and one of only seven schools in the Midwest to get an invite.


The VCIC is an invitation-only international competition that's carried out over two rounds: a preliminary round held in five different regions with 6-8 schools and a finals round with winners from each region competing for the international title. Student teams act as institutional investors representing a venture capital firm.

Teams are given business plans from three real-world startups, as well as information about the venture capital firm they're representing and a profile of the venture fund from which they're going to make their investments. Teams then have 36 hours to conduct research, analyze the market and prepare questions for a Q&A with the founders. On the final day of the competition, teams listen to and evaluate each startup’s pitch presentation and conduct a one-on-one interview with the founder of each company.

With the regional victory, the team competed in the finals round of the competition this past weekend in Chapel Hill. At the international competition, the Miami team took home second place. 

Read more about the competition here.

 

 


 

Rhinegeist founder used data algorithm to determine future


Before co-founding Rhinegeist Brewery, Bob Bonder was working in San Francisco for a business consulting firm. He used his company's data algorithm to predict what his next move should be.

Originally, Bonder thought about opening a bed-and-breakfast in Brazil, but after the algorithm revealed that Asheville, NC, and Cincinnati were the best places for him to pursue his love of coffee, he spent time in each city and decided the Queen City was the place for him. He started Tazza Mia Coffee, but realized that Cincinnatians loved beer even more than coffee. 

He teamed up with Bryant Goulding, who had experience in the craft beer industry, and they opened Rhinegeist in 2013.

To read the full article about Rhinegeist's beginnings and success, click here.
 

Local startup makes list of top up-and-coming startups in the world


In 2009, market researcher Quid (then called YouNoodle) put together a list of the world's 50 most promising startups. Although a number of the companies named to that initial list don't exist anymore, others like Evernote and Spotify have increased exponentially in value.

Quid put together another list, and based its findings on these top three criteria:
  • Have the founders worked together before?
  • Is the business in a popular sector?
  • Has it raised funding quickly?
After researching 50,000 startups, it came up with a list that includes Cincinnati's own Eccrine Systems. It is developing a non-invasive, electronic wearable system that measures and transmits real-time data about human sweat; since its inception, the company has raised a total of $8.9 million.

To see Quid's full list of rising star startups, read this article from Bloomberg.

UC grad named to Forbes' 30 Under 30 List


Mario Jovan Shaw, a 2012 University of Cincinnati grad, made Forbes' list of 30 Under 30 in the social entrepreneurship category.

Shaw and business partner Jason Terrell started Profound Gentlemen, an education-based nonprofit. The organization is made up of 100 male educators of color from around the country who provide mentorship to young men of color.

Shaw joins 599 other standout artists, techies, educators, scientists, foodies, gamers, doctors, entrepreneurs, philanthropists, entertainers, lawyers, marketers, musicians and athletes in this year's 30 Under 30 class.

To read more about the 600 members of 2017's class of 30 Under 30, click here.

Eric Avner and People's Liberty lauded for innovative approach to philanthropy


People's Liberty is a five-year experiment to see how philanthropy can be done differently and possibly even more effectively, CEO Eric Avner explains in an "Innovator of the Week" profile story from Urban Innovation Exchange. Avner and his team didn't want something permanent but instead devised a timeline with a sense of urgency.
 
"Building this as a separate brand from the (Haile/U.S. Bank Foundation) gives us ability to be more experimental, to have a slightly cheekier tone, a different pace, a different way of using tech and design," Avner tells UIX. "All of these things, whether storytelling or design or metrics or outreach or work culture, will ultimately make us better grant makers. It also sets the tone for how to reach people in ways that are more authentic without seeming stuffy, but do it in a different way than foundations typically operate."
 
Avner, Vice President and Senior Program Manager at the Haile Foundation, launched People's Liberty in summer 2014 and awarded its first grants later that year.

Detroit-based Urban Innovation Exchange is an initiative to advance the growing movement of people leading change in cities. Launched in 2012 as a three-year project funded by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, UIX now showcases catalytic talent transforming cities and neighborhoods across the U.S.

Soapbox's parent company, Issue Media Group, is a UIX national partner.

Read the full Urban Innovation Exchange story here.
 

How Cincinnati salvaged the nation's most dangerous neighborhood


Politico Magazine presents an exhaustive, well-researched overview of how the City of Cincinnati and 3CDC "salvaged" Over-the-Rhine, tracing the neighborhood's political battles since the 1930s and putting today's renaissance into historical context.

"It's a transformation that's happened in a blink of an eye, turning a neighborhood that in 2009 topped Compton in Los Angeles for the 'most dangerous' title into something that looks and feels like Greenwich Village," writes Politico Contributing Editor Colin Woodward. "And it didn't happen by accident. Virtually everything that’s occurred in Over-the-Rhine — from the placement of the trees in the park to the curation of ground floor businesses — has been meticulously planned and engineered by a single, corporate-funded and decidedly non-governmental entity."
 
That would be 3CDC, and Woodward retraces how then-Mayor Charlie Luken and then-Procter & Gamble CEO A.G. Lafley cooked up the idea for such an organization in the wake of the 2001 civil unrest. He also does a good job explaining how 3CDC went about accumulating OTR buildings, how it's developing Vine Street block by block and why so many neighborhood residents feel left out of the comeback.

It's a well-written story with excellent photography and meticulous detail on German immigrants, the "OTR naming" story, population shifts, Buddy Gray, Jim Tarbell, The Brandery, the Brewery District and much more.

Read the full Politico story here.
 

Streetcars: If you build it, will they come?


Slow to build and expensive to operate, streetcars could be the most maligned mode of transportation in America, Governing Magazine says in its June issue, but cities keep building them.

This could be a banner year for streetcar openings, Daniel Vock writes, with a total of eight streetcar projects opening or about to come online, including five in cities with no previous service: Cincinnati; Detroit; Kansas City, Mo.; St. Louis; and Washington, D.C.

"What generally distinguishes streetcars from light rail is that streetcars are smaller, travel in traffic, have shorter routes and make more frequent stops," he writes. "Light rail is built to move people between neighborhoods, while streetcars typically help people get around within neighborhoods. Although the distinctions may seem small, they help explain why streetcars seem to get a lot more criticism than light rail projects, even though both have proliferated rapidly in recent years."

The most emulated streetcar system in the country is Portland’s, Vock says, and a "pilgrimage to Portland is virtually a prerequisite for any city leader serious about building a streetcar system at home. Cincinnati’s delegation has visited Portland 39 times because it’s an example of how a streetcar can both improve transportation and create a vibrant neighborhood out of an overlooked industrial area."

Read the full Governing Magazine story here.
 

Local startup Spatial among 12 international companies in auto mobility accelerator


The mobility accelerator operated by Boulder-Color.-based Techstars recently named Cincinnati startup Spatial as one of the 12 companies in its Techstars Mobility Class of 2016. Each is building automotive mobility technologies and services that enable people and goods to move around more freely, according to the announcement posted on Techstars' website.

"The quality of teams and companies applying this year has been incredible," writes Techstars Mobility Managing Director Ted Serbinski. "We saw a world-wide response with applications from 52 countries across 6 continents. There was a 44 percent increase in mobility-focused companies. Most impressive, 50 percent of the 2016 companies include founders with diverse backgrounds."

Spatial uses data from social media platforms to describe the feel of a neighborhood on maps, a big help to people planning trips to cities or areas they aren't familiar with. The startup was part of Ocean's accelerator class earlier this year, graduating in April.

As part of the Techstars Mobility Class, Serbinski says, Spatial will participate in a Sept. 8 demo day "where we expect over 1,000 people to come see and meet these 12 startups."

Techstars has increased its investment relationship with Cintrifuse in recent years and is partnering with Cintrifuse to present its annual FounderCon in Cincinnati in October.

Read the full Techstars blog post here.
 

Mortar turns locals into entrepreneurs in Cincinnati's gentrifying economy


Mortar's nine-week business development program is explained and celebrated in Yes! Magazine, a nonprofit, ad-free online and print publication offering tools for citizen engagement and stories about real people working for a better world.

While Mortar is open to all, Araz Hachadourian writes, the majority of its students are low-income women — like Jasmine Ford, who is featured in the story. After going through the Mortar program and raising funds through a Kiva campaign, Ford is planning to open a storefront bakery, Jazzy Sweeties, in Walnut Hills.

"The (Mortar) idea sprung from founders Derrick Braziel and Allen Woods, who live in Cincinnati’s historic Over-the-Rhine neighborhood," Hachadourian writes. "Once a working-class neighborhood made up mostly of German immigrants, the area was later populated by African Americans arriving during the Great Migration. Most businesses then were bars and small shops.

"Over the years, tech firms moved in and more than $843 million was invested in Over-the-Rhine and the surrounding downtown area, bringing an onslaught of development and new residents. Braziel says the neighborhood still has small businesses, 'but they’re serving a different demographic now.'"

"A lot of the entrepreneurs that we work with operate out of the underground cash economy," Braziel says. "They’re running businesses out of their living room or they’re doing business out of their trunk or they’re hustling in some way, shape, or form. There’s talent all around, what’s lacking is the know-how."

Read the full Yes! Magazine story here.
 

Cincinnati, Cleveland, Columbus to use high-tech tools to fight blight


Next City explores how the Motor City Mapping project, a citywide effort to create a comprehensive property dashboard in Detroit, is now expanding to Cincinnati, Cleveland and Columbus. Next City is a nonprofit organization providing daily online coverage of the leaders, policies and innovations driving progress in metropolitan regions across the world.

"The Detroit Land Bank Authority used the data to make decisions about which houses to save versus tear down," Lee Chilcote writes. "Officials also inventoried vacant and occupied properties for the first time, concentrating their efforts on tearing down vacant homes and preventing residents who are behind on their taxes from losing their homes."

The same technology is coming to Ohio thanks to a $1 million grant from JPMorgan Chase to the Western Reserve Land Conservancy that will allow the agency to create property dashboards for Cincinnati, Cleveland and Columbus. WRLC will work with Detroit-based Loveland Technologies, which developed the Motor City Mapping project.

Loveland founder and CEO Jerry Paffendorf says the technology has been a game changer for Detroit because it's "the most accurate thing that exists as far as getting a look at occupancy, vacancy and condition" of properties.

"With information in a single, easy-to-use interface that is updated in real-time, Detroit residents can get a much more accurate picture of the condition of their neighborhoods," the story says, which will be the same for Cincinnati neighborhoods.

Read the full Next City story here.
 

Avondale program shows how the arts contribute to creating more equitable places


Local arts leader Margy Waller has published a report about her painting project in Avondale on Americans for the Arts' ArtsBlog. It's her fifth blog post in 2016 related to her involvement with the organization's New Community Visions Initiative, a two-year effort to explore the role of community-based arts enabling organizations, funders, cultural institutions and artists in shaping the future of local arts in the U.S.

Waller's new blog post asks how the arts can contribute to creating more equitable places and offers her Avondale experience as an example of success.

"Leaders at two of the area hospitals seem to recognize the damage done to the neighborhood (by large institutions replacing homes with office buildings and parking lots) and are looking for ways to connect with residents, bridging and bonding with the community, creating a stronger place for all," she writes. "These leaders called for a partner to create an experience, having in mind something like the ArtWalks — community inspired and co-created crosswalk murals — we’ve created in other neighborhoods."

The resulting painting project at Gabriel's Place, Waller says, "might seem a small thing. But, no. Co-creating the art is a major happiness element, enhancing quality of life and connecting the neighborhood residents to people working at the encroaching institutions. Recognizing the damage done, the racist and privileged actions over decades, is large."

Read Margy Waller's full blog post here.
 

Japp's recognized by Esquire as one of the "best bars in America"


Molly Wellmann and her Japp's establishment on Main Street get high praise from Esquire Magazine's David Wondrich, who includes the Over-the-Rhine gem on his list of the 18 best bars in America.

Wondrich writes about the revolution he's witnessed over 11 years as Esquire's Drinks Correspondent, where most U.S. cities are now supporting craft cocktail bars that are full.

"People are paying double to drink in them, and they're not outraged," he writes. "They're coming back, over and over. They're putting their phones away (well, mostly), forgetting about the game, doing their best to act sober. (In my years of visiting these joints, I've rarely seen anybody visibly intoxicated — tipsy, sure; drunk, uncool.) The bartenders, their mustachioed, inked hipsterdom aside, are generally studious and hardworking (if perhaps too devoted to making things by hand that really don't need to be). All of this while the media and the political class are hyperventilating about the irreparable decline of America."

Wondrich suggests getting a Cool Jules at Japp's, "a gin-and-port stunner." Unless it's Tiki night, "in which case, pick something rummy from the chalkboard."

Read the full Esquire Magazine list here.
 
427 Leadership Articles | Page: | Show All
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