Columbus CEO Future 50 of 2020 – Bold Ideas for a Bright Columbus

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Bold ideas for a bright columbus The region stands on the threshold of unprecedented change. Meet 50 people with the energy, the creativity and the heart to make this the great American city of the next century. Future50_Cover.indd 1

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THAT WAS THEN. As our nation experienced the perils of war, visionary citizens imagined a better future for all of our community’s residents.

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THIS IS NOW. The Spirit of Columbus is felt in the passion and determination of those in our community who make great things happen.

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3 Editor’s Note

27 Alex Frommeyer

4 Melissa Wervey Arnold

28 Autumn Glover

Envisioning the next Columbus

62 E. Broad St., P.O. Box 1289 Columbus, Ohio 43216 Phone: 614-540-8900 Fax: 614-461-8746

DMG Interim General Manager

Alan Miller

Publisher/General Manager

Ray Paprocki

Associate Publisher/Advertising Director, Rheta Gallagher Editorial Editor, Katy Smith Staff Writer, Chloe Teasley Design & Production Production/Design Director

Craig Rusnak Art Director

Yogesh Chaudhary Digital

Editor, Julanne Hohbach Assistant Digital Editor

Brittany Moseley

Photography Photo Editor, Tim Johnson Associate photo editor

Rob Hardin

Advertising Advertising Manager, Susan

Kendall Digital Specialist, Steven Mace Sales Assistant, Samantha Belk Marketing Marketing Manager


CEO, Ohio Chapter, American Academy of Pediatrics

6 Alex Anthony

Director, client delivery, Aver

7 Doug Arseneault


Toll Free: 877-688-8009 2

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29 Matthew Goldstein

52 Megan Shroy

CEO, Besa

8 Kelly Atkinson

31 Derek Grosso

10 Rehgan Avon

Head of solutions at Mobikit and founder, Women in Analytics

11 Bill Balderaz President, Futurety

12 Nevin Bansal

Founder and CEO of Outreach Promotional Solutions; founder and executive director of Small Biz Cares

13 Jacquie Bickel

President, Buckeye Interactive

President, Otterbein University

18 Annalies Corbin

Founder, president and CEO, PAST Foundation

33 Shannon Hardin

President, Columbus City Council

58 Ryan Wilkins

President, Improving-Columbus

36 Dr. B.J. Hicks

Founder and president, Measurement Resources

38 Rebecca Hurd

Director of advancement, LifeCare Alliance

40 Brett Kaufman Founder & CEO, Kaufman Development

41 Colin McGinnis

CEO, South Side Early Learning

44 Matt Miller

60 Kierra Williams

Head of talent management and organizational development, Shearer’s Foods

61 Matthew Yerkes

Founder and executive director, Cultivate

62 Zachary Woodruff

Director of development and public service, city of Whitehall

64 Mindy Yocum

Owner, Yocum Law Office and CEO, JusticeMobile

Partner/attorney, Ice Miller

45 Chanel Nelson

Senior HR generalist, Continental Office

24 Falon Donohue

46 Lacey Picazo

25 Amanda Epp

47 John Rush

26 Jessica Fleming

48 Letty Schamp

Radiobiologist, James Cancer Center

Senior director of communications and facilities, Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Ohio

Housing director, Huckleberry House

Director of leasing, RPT Realty

President, ScriptDrop

56 Stephen White

35 Josh Harrison

21 Jordan Davis

CEO, VentureOhio

President/founder at Geben Communication

Author and co-founder, Pacesetters Unlimited

42 Amanda Leclerc

22 Katie Doellman

Founder and CEO, Choice Network

Vice president of external affairs, strategic initiatives and business development, in-house counsel, COSI

34 Kristin Harper

20 Michael Corey

Executive director, Human Service Chamber of Franklin County

Managing partner, Atlas Partners

55 Heather Whaling

Partner, Bricker & Eckler

37 Sheri Chaney Jones

16 John Comerford

53 Timothy Wolf Starr

32 Ali Haque

14 Haley Boehning Director, planning and sustainability, Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission

Founder and president, Approach Marketing

54 Molly Rampe Thomas

OhioHealth Neurological Physicians co-director, Comprehensive Stroke Program

15 Kerstin Carr

Senior director of development, Central Ohio Transit Authority

Co-founder of Second Date Social and owner of City Venture Holdings

Vice president, ImprovingColumbus Co-founder, Storyforge

President, Schottenstein Real Estate Group

51 Kimberly Sharp

30 Brad Griffith

Diversity and inclusion coordinator and office administrator, Barnes & Thornburg

50 Brian Schottenstein

Government affairs and community relations, Wexner Medical Center; and interim president, PACT

Public affairs administrator, Central Ohio Transit Authority

Director, Smart Columbus, Columbus Partnership Future 50, a supplement to Columbus CEO magazine, is published annually by Gannett. All contents of this magazine are copyrighted © Gannett Co., Inc. 2020. All Rights Reserved. Reproduction or use, without written permission, of editorial or graphic content in any manner is prohibited. Publisher assumes no responsibility for return of unsolicited materials.

CEO and co-founder, Beam Dental

Founder and principal, ZoCo Design President/CEO, CleanTurn Deputy city engineer, city of Hilliard


Katy Smith, Chloe Teasley and Laura Newpoff Photos by:

Tim Johnson and Rob Hardin

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Editor’s notes *

Envisioning the next Columbus Welcome to Future 50, a special project we’ve launched this year at Columbus CEO. This inaugural class has everything going for it. A fresh new decade, full of promise; wild smarts and talent; and the guts and hearts to carry out bold ideas that make everyone’s lives better. On the pages that follow, you’ll meet a diverse group of people who have what it takes to help make Columbus the great American city of the next century. They count among them a scientist who has dedicated her life to curing cancer; a university president who’s upending the traditional college model; an attorney who travels the region in the JusticeMobile helping people who can’t afford legal advice; and transportation planners, tech entrepreneurs, social justice champions, design gurus and more. What can’t they accomplish? In their applications, which were evaluated by Dispatch Magazines leaders, we asked this vibrant group two core questions, and you’ll find their answers on the pages that follow, edited and condensed. We asked: As the Columbus region prepares to welcome 1 million additional people by 2050, as projected by the Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission, what do we need to thrive? Then, we asked them to offer an idea for an Annual Project the 50 could do within one year to

create meaningful change in the community. The project, which will be chosen by the 50 at a gathering in January, should embody the Future 50 core values—achievement, altruism, boldness, creativity and inclusivity. I can’t wait to see what they come up with. In this special 13th issue of the magazine, you’ll find beautiful portraits of the class members taken by our photographers, Tim Johnson and Rob Hardin, laid into a compelling, smart design by art director Yogesh Chaudhary, who created the Future 50 logo. Many thanks for their hard work and creativity. And our gratitude goes to class member Brett Kaufman, who offered use of his space at Gravity, his Franklinton development that brings together art, community and intentional living, for the photo shoot. It was a perfect fit. If you’d like to be involved in the 2021 class of Future 50, applications will be available at beginning this spring. It is our intention for the Future 50 class of 2020 to choose the members of the next class.

Katy Smith, Editor

East Broad Street, 1921 Photo courtesy Columbus Metropolitan Library

Future 50 is all about ideas that bring forth a vision of the future, so here’s mine: Imagine traveling in a computerdriven car down East Broad Street Downtown, passing underneath a canopy of shade trees, your space bathed in dapples of green leaf-light. On either side of the boulevard, people from diverse backgrounds are out walking, families pass by on bicycles, and gardens joyfully spill over tidy sidewalks. The serene summer setting seems effortless considering the advanced technology woven into every aspect of the scene: Your car, the road, the bicycles, and the collar on every dog are in constant contact, ensuring everyone stays safe. The plantings sport water conservation systems. Slim, whisper-quiet electric railcars, or perhaps buses, glide past in lanes safely away from pedestrians. Passengers from as far as Georgesville Road to the west and Hamilton Road to the east relax on their commutes, drinking coffee in durable personal containers and reading the news of the day on solar devices. This vision of Broad Street simultaneously recalls the past and conjures the future. Broad Street once was a narrower, pedestrian-friendly boulevard lush with greenery, a stark contrast to what it is now: eight lanes of vehicles traveling at 40 and sometimes 45 mph past crumbling sidewalks, a dangerous place to ride a bicycle and an inhospitable one to traverse on foot. Many thoughtful plans have been crafted to bring back Broad Street’s so-called “parkway” arrangement, as it was in the 1921 photo with this story, but for budgetary and other reasons lost to time, nothing has been acted upon. But wouldn’t it be wonderful if it was? January 2020/Future 50

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About: Melissa Wervey Arnold has provided leadership for the American Academy of Pediatrics, Ohio chapter, an organization with 3,000 Ohio pediatricians and residents, since 2005. During her tenure, she has helped develop programs on issues such as obesity, mental wellness and smoking cessation. She also secured funding enabling the programs to be free for AAP Ohio members. In 2018, 875,000 children were impacted by the programs coming out of Arnold’s chapter. Arnold is known as someone who is always ready to take a phone call from colleagues, friends or family members who need her help. She recently traveled to several states to train and mentor new or struggling AAP executive directors, giving them guidance and support in a variety of areas. Outside of work: Arnold is a member of Kiwanis and Junior League of Columbus; she also serves as one of the youngest members in the history of the Ohio University Alumni Association Board of Directors, and as part of the university’s Foundation Board of Directors. What does Columbus need to thrive? “Columbus needs to prioritize a ‘whole community’ approach. We need to lean on the talents of the business, academic, health care and nonprofit communities to grow Columbus. We should not just rely on corporate growth but rather look to various community leaders to provide a stronger workforce and com-


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Columbus needs to prioritize a ‘whole community’ approach. We need to lean on the talents of the business, academic, health care and nonprofit communities to grow Columbus. munity together, including a focus on physical and mental health care, cultural activities, athletics, mass transportation and technology.”

Arnold’s idea: “The Future 50 class could take a multidisciplinary team approach by spreading knowledge to parents, schools, businesses and community organizations to teach recognition of adolescent suicide risk through depression screening. The number of screenings and messaging can be tracked to show quantifiable change. By working on this program, the class could come together as leaders to address a problem for the next generation to lead our community.”

Melissa Wervey Arnold CEO, American Academy of Pediatrics Ohio Chapter

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Congratulations to Ohio’s children, who are fortunate to have

MELISSA WERVEY ARNOLD advocating for them every day through the Ohio Chapter, American Academy of Pediatrics and now also through her work as part of Columbus’ inaugural class of Future 50 leaders! will use their passion, energy and heart to make Columbus even better!

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Alex Anthony Director, client delivery at Aver

About: Alex Anthony moved to Columbus in 2006 as an Ohio State University freshman and never looked back. She was appointed as the undergraduate student member of the university’s Board of Trustees in 2009 where she developed strong relationships and networking skills. Leadership roles provided her the opportunity to understand and navigate the complexity of the university to create consensus and enact change.

After graduation, she attained the Certified Public Accounting credential and began a consulting career at Ernst & Young. She quickly discovered a niche in large-scale program management and was able to use her organizational skills and versatility to lead successful projects at some of the largest health care organizations in the country. Anthony joined Aver in 2016. The company offers solutions to help health care payers and providers design and administer value-based programs. She now leads customer delivery for Aver’s customers and balances multiple projects to support revenue generation. Outside of work: Anthony

chaired the United Way’s LINC Young Professional affinity group, serves on the development committee and volunteers with the “Tax Time” program. She is a grants committee chair for Ohio State’s Women & Philanthropy. Anthony also supports Junior Achievement of Central Ohio’s development committee. What does Columbus need to thrive? “Columbus needs to lead radical change in child care. The extravagant cost of high-quality child care remains an enormous barrier to women continuing to advance their careers after starting a family. This is also directly related to the increase in women in poverty in our community.”

Columbus needs to lead radical change in child care. 6

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Anthony’s idea: “Franklin County Job and Family Services has noted that up to 28,000 children may be without child care starting next year due to changes in the enrollment rules for child care subsidies. The Future 50 should create a call to action for the Columbus City Council and local business community to address the need for affordable and high-quality child care in our community.”

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About: Doug Arseneault helped lead COTA’s public engagement efforts during its transit system redesign, bringing together COTA’s service planners and community stakeholders at more than 40 public hearings over two years. Arseneault ensured the perspectives of

regional leaders, community advocates and COTA customers and employees were incorporated into the new system’s development. He also collaborated with South Side stakeholders to modify the planned route changes to connect people to jobs and services. Arseneault was a member of COTA’s NextGen project, which looked at the future of transportation and helped lay the foundation for the Insight2050 Corridor Concepts Study by the Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission.

Last year, Arseneault began leading COTA’s partnerships with private transportation providers, identifying opportunities for collaboration with ride- and vehicle-sharing companies. He also is involved in the partnership with Smart Columbus. Outside of work: Arseneault is a senior coach for Next Level Trainings and serves as development committee co-chair at the Create Columbus Commission and a 2019 fellow of the New Leaders Council Institute.

Doug Arseneault Public affairs administrator Central Ohio Transit Authority

Our urban core residential neighborhoods must be connected to growing job centers through infill development along major corridors. What does Columbus need to thrive? “While some parts of Central Ohio are thriving, many communities remain disconnected from opportunities to prosper. Our urban core residential neighborhoods must be connected to growing job centers through infill development along major corridors. We must support community growth that attracts diverse populations and businesses, and rethink how we dedicate our roadways.”

Arseneault’s idea: “Four core issues must be addressed: job training, housing, childcare and transportation. Our region is rich in programming, but knowledge of these resources is limited. This is particularly true for middle-class families who do not typically engage with support networks, yet are one event away from losing stability and slipping into poverty. Building on a United Way-led proposal for the Alliance for the American Dream grant, I propose that the Future 50 focus on connecting residents to short-term support in these four areas.” January 2020/Future 50

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We’ve been training the world to see Columbus as smart and open. an initiative with other law firms that promotes gender equity programs for hundreds of members of the Columbus legal community. What does Columbus need to thrive? “To treat every person and group who visits Columbus for a night or to make a home with civility and respect, and to continue the Columbus Way by collaboratively working together to make our city the best it can be. We’ve been training the world to see Columbus as smart and open. I believe it’s our willingness to strive for more with that inclusion lens that will keep us moving forward.”

Kelly Atkinson Diversity and inclusion coordinator and office administrator Barnes & Thornburg

About: Kelly Atkinson serves as a local liaison in marketing, information technology, accounting and human resources. She manages the firm’s business services


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team, addresses facilities concerns and coordinates office events. Atkinson works with the office managing partner on strategic planning, community involvement, recruiting, business development and making the office a desirable atmosphere for law professionals. Since February 2018, Atkinson has worked with the firm’s diversity and inclusion director to launch programs, events and initiatives. The

firm dedicates most of its attention to sponsorship of employees, aligning diversity and inclusion with how it does business as a firm and creating a culture of inclusion. Outside of work: Atkinson will become chair of the trustees of the Columbus Metropolitan Club in 2021 after serving as membership chair and vice chair. Atkinson is the co-inventor of Gender Equity in the Legal Industry, or GELI,

Atkinson’s idea: “Working with the 49 others to identify around seven issues that affect our city, then split into groups of 5-10 to address each one. We would work with the nonprofits and primary for-profit businesses that support each issue to understand how they can work together to divide and conquer the issue more collaboratively.”

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Kelly Atkinson leads with creativity, empathy, and focus. We are thrilled to “lend” her to the inaugural Future 50 class, and look forward to the entire class’s contributions to making Columbus even greater.

Uncommon Value


advantages Congratulations to Ice Miller Partner Matthew Miller for being named a member of the inaugural Class of 2020 for Future 50. To learn about Matt’s experience with public finance, including alternative project delivery, and social impact bonds, visit attorney advertising material

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300+ lawyers in Columbus and other offices

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Rehgan Avon Founder and CEO, Women in Analytics; Head of solutions at Mobikit

About: In 2016, Rehgan Avon created a conference dedicated to women in analytics—a male-dominated industry— by ensuring the speaker line-up was only women. The Women in Analytics conference, reaching more than 1,200 people each year, is now the largest analytics

conference in the Midwest. The Columbus-based community is also expanding globally with ambassadors in eight different countries— China, Afghanistan, Germany, Poland, Australia, India, England and Kenya. Avon also launched the Big Data and Analytics Association at Ohio State University, creating a conduit for recruiting analytics talent from the university. She holds a bachelor’s degree in industrial and systems engineering from Ohio State with a specialization in data analytics.

Columbus needs to focus on transportation; a diversity of industry and job opportunities; and access to basic needs. 10

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Outside of work: Avon is a contributor to TechLife Columbus, the founding sponsor of the Data Science for Women Summer Camp and the founding sponsor of the analytics curriculum launched by Tech Corps that exposes elementary, middle and high school students to analytics. What does Columbus need to thrive? “Columbus needs to focus on transportation; a diversity of industry and job opportunities; and access to basic needs like housing, internet and education. It must ensure that it is retaining talent and connecting it to the opportunities to contribute to the community. It must support small businesses, provide resources for the startup community, and structure itself to keep the top Fortune 500 companies that are currently

headquartered here. It must also continue to invest in the arts such as music, fashion, dance, cuisine, and in the Smart City initiative.”

Avon’s idea: “We could survey different demographics of the city to further understand current deficits and opportunities to improve, create a central resources page for information on education opportunities, transportation ways to get involved or volunteer. Then, if an opportunity exists, create a campaign to promote it.”

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We need to keep attracting and retaining talent. deraz also has been featured in some of the country’s most prominent media outlets including the Wall Street Journal, Money Magazine and on NPR. Outside of work: Balderaz is the founder of Lifting Hopes, a group that raises money for children battling cancer. He’s a board member of Chapel Hill House, a retreat for kids with cancer. He’s active in the Covenant Presbyterian Church and supports local arts groups. He’s also the founder of CommonWealth, a coworking space that provides educational programming for entrepreneurs. What does Columbus need to thrive? “We need to keep attracting and retaining talent. There are great businesses here, great schools and a good amount of investment capital. We have a great arts, food and culture scene. Now, let’s make sure we keep the best talent here and attract talent from other cities. Plus, we need a good live bait store.”

Bill Balderaz

President, Futurety

About: As the founder of Futurety, Bill Balderaz focuses on helping organizations disrupt industries and develop new products and services.

The firm’s processes combine sales, website, social, financial, operational and third-party data into a simple and accessible dashboard. Clients then use that data to support their marketing decisions. Before he founded Futurety, Balderaz was the founder and president of Webbed Marketing, which grew from a one-man consultancy into one of the fastest growing interactive marketing agen-

cies in the Midwest. He also founded Fathom Healthcare, a digital marketing and analytics agency. Balderaz has been an investor in and adviser to Apportis, a provider of telehealth, personalized health care content, remote patient monitoring, lab testing and medical billing. He has spoken at more than 150 conferences, from New York to California, on topics surrounding innovation. Bal-

Balderaz’s idea: “We would work to provide social-economic mobility to underserved populations. We would create a program to provide job training, transportation and child care to unemployed or underemployed residents to raise their social-economic status.”

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Nevin Bansal Founder and CEO of Outreach Promotional Solutions; founder and executive director of Small Biz Cares

About: Once a CPA, Nevin Bansal is now best described as an entrepreneur He is at the helm of not one, but two organizations—one a marketing agency and the other a nonprofit. Small Biz Cares, the nonprofit that Bansal founded in 2018, has a mission to connect,

mobilize and inspire small businesses. In its first year of operation, it has worked with hundreds of small businesses to better the community by giving time and money to support local nonprofits and educational initiatives. The belief driving the nonprofit is that small businesses are the “lifeblood” of a community and its economy. Bansal’s company, Outreach Promotional Solutions, has gone from a product company to a marketing agency under his direction. Its goal is to help solve the challenges businesses have around

The small business community can play a more critical role in social impact. 12

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digital and design. This year marked its fastest growth year in five years. Outside of work: Bansal and his wife of 13 years live with their twin 4-year-old daughters in New Albany, next door to Bansal’s twin brother. What does Columbus need to thrive? “I believe the No. 1 need for Columbus is a more robust public transportation system. Columbus could benefit from reduced road congestion, more efficient travel between the city and suburbs, and a better utilization of land by a reduced number of parking spaces. We also have to train people for the needs of companies of all sizes and match them with opportunities.”

Nevin’s idea: “The small business community can play a more critical role in social impact. Together, we can drive more participation in philanthropy by the small business community, thereby creating a multiplier effect on social impact. We could interview and engage local small businesses, build a database of opportunities with nonprofits and create programming with partners such as Small Biz Cares and Conscious Capitalism.” January 2020

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Many people in Columbus are going hungry at times because they can’t buy enough nutritious food to last through the month.

tional tor of

Outside of work: In addition to Conscious Capitalism, Bickel is a board member for the Ohio Girl Scouts and the New Directions Career Center. She’s also involved in member engagement for the Columbus Chamber.

Jacquie Bickel Vice president Improving–Columbus

About: Jacquie Bickel leads business development and account management for the technology management and consulting firm, Improving —Columbus. Since she joined the Improving leaderJanuary 2020

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ship team, revenue has more than doubled. Bickel helped establish the local chapter of Conscious Capitalism and has acted as its inaugural chairperson for nearly two years. Through inspiring corporate citizenship, purpose beyond profit and attention to a broad stakeholder model, this group aspires to inspire companies to become forces for good across the globe. She is seen not only as a local leader, but has been recognized outside Ohio and

contributed at international conferences on several occasions. Her thought leadership in this area has inspired companies including IGS, Jeni’s Ice Cream and Cardinal Health to join together to elevate businesses that aspire to elevate humanity. Bickel also acts as a role model for women in Columbus—exemplifying how young women can rapidly succeed while giving back to the community of which they are a part.

What does Columbus need to thrive? “We have one of the most robust communities for involvement—philanthropy, nonprofits or companies truly investing in being more conscious and seeing business as a force for good. Community leaders should be charged with evangelizing that message, welcoming those moving to Columbus and getting them involved in our communities, keeping that fabric strong and making it even stronger.”

Bickel’s idea: “Many people in Columbus are going hungry at times because they can’t buy enough nutritious food to last through the month. I would love to explore a project that accesses the technology of hydroponics (to create) indoor sustainable gardens that would allow for year-round organic food options for those that can’t afford it.”


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Haley Boehning Co-founder, Storyforge

About: After a long career at Limited Brands where she rose to vice president of internal communications, Haley Boehning went out on her own in 2013, founding Haley & Co. Ltd. to help clients with their targeted messaging strategies. She launched Storyforge a year later. Storyforge helps its clients build brands that matter by mastering their meaning-

ful story and aligning all aspects of the business with it. Boehning has welcomed clients of all kinds—nonprofits, social enterprises and pre-revenue startups to multi-billion-dollar international companies that all have a common desire to change their corner of the world. “By inspiring, connecting and educating those who share her vision, she is helping to create a future where business is a force for good,” said John Lowe, CEO for Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams, in nominating Boehning for Future 50. Outside of work: Boehning is vice chair of Conscious Capitalism’s Columbus chapter,

Create a future where business is a force for good. 14

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which she helped establish in 2017. She will become chair in January 2020. She is a founding member of the Matriots, Ohio’s first multi-partisan political action committee dedicated to electing more women to public office. What does Columbus need to thrive? “Our region’s poverty rate remains stubbornly high despite record low unemployment. Women, people of color and our LGBTQ+ neighbors remain underrepresented in business and community leadership positions. As Central Ohio’s population grows, we risk widening these gaps and fortifying the barriers that created them. We must do more, better and faster, to address these disparities and inequities.”

Boehning’s idea: “We should bring business, civic and nonprofit leaders together to identify and address community challenges. Not just through donations, generic community service projects or appointments to board seats, but through targeting specialized talent. I suggest a project clearinghouse of sorts to bring together adhoc teams for time-bound projects that leverage the skills of these public-private partnership teams to study an issue, debate and align on a solution.”

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Poverty simulation can start a mind shift that allows us to find holistic solutions from a place of understanding rather than goodintentioned assumptions.

Kerstin Carr Director, planning and sustainability Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission

About: Kerstin Carr helped develop the Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission’s Insight2050 initiative, stoking a regional conversation across sectors about

how communities should be built as population grows and needs shift dramatically. Carr also led an effort called Central Ohio Greenways. Over a two-year period, the Greenways board met with every jurisdiction in a seven-county area to identify existing trails and map proposed trails. This resulted in a Regional Trail Vision to expand the existing 230-mile network to more than 700 miles in the next few decades.

Carr’s more recent endeavor is to identify solutions to the affordable housing crisis with innovative policy and investment strategies. Outside of work: Carr is a 2019 Leadership Columbus graduate and chair of the Neighborhood Design Center and Scenario Planning Consortium. She is co-founder of Think Outside Boxes, a program to get more kids outside and away from screens.

What does Columbus need to thrive? “We were rated as one of the most economically segregated cities in the U.S. with a 16 percent poverty rate in Franklin County. That accounts for the most vulnerable population, but not the many more residents who are underemployed and/or underpaid. To thrive, we need to make sure we take care of those who don’t have the time and resources to fight for better schools, transportation options or more connected neighborhoods.”

Carr’s idea: “To work with United Way to take their poverty simulation training on the road to public and corporate leaders, including the Columbus Partnership. High-level executives likely won’t have the time for full immersion, but the short two-hour poverty simulation can start a mind shift that allows us to find holistic solutions from a place of understanding rather than good-intentioned assumptions.”

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About: John Comerford joined Otterbein as president in 2018. He served as president of Blackburn College in Carlinville, Illinois, from 2013 to 2018 and previously held highlevel administrative roles with Westminster College in Missouri, University of Kansas and Missouri Western State University. Comerford holds strong values around social justice and equality, access and affordability and diversity and inclusion. In his first year at Otterbein, he helped established a scholarship that covers full tuition for Ohio students from families of financial need. Otterbein also enrolled a record 160-plus students of color in the new class last fall. To build the student pipeline and workforce of the future, the university is partnering with a dozen local companies, Columbus State Community College and Columbus City Schools. Outside work: Board member for Simon Kenton Council of Boy Scouts, Westerville Rotary Club and Westerville Chamber of Commerce. The father of three also spends time driving his children around to their many activities—Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, 4H, soccer, tumbling, baseball and church activities. The native of Kenosha, Wisconsin, holds a Ph.D. in higher education administration from the University of Kansas. What does Columbus need? “K-12 schools can connect to colleges and trade schools to ensure more students


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What if we invented a way to collaborate based on a more intentional, inclusive and scalable system?

John Comerford President, Otterbein University

go on to get the education they will need for success in this economy. Colleges and universities can ensure affordability and connect with employers, ensuring we are creating the workforce they need. Corporations can invest back in the education system, not just out of charity, but out of a need to break down barriers in workforce development.”

Comerford’s idea: “The Columbus Way is all about collaboration and partnership. Yet, it seems at times that our growth is making this more difficult. Meaningful opportunities could be missed because it is simply more difficult to interact with an increasing number of groups, businesses and leaders. What if we invented a way to collaborate based on a more intentional, inclusive and scalable system? This could take many forms—perhaps a matching service where groups can share their services and needs. Perhaps a speed dating format or an online discussion and sharing system.”

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“We aspire to be a shining light that is a model for what American higher education could be.” JOHN COMERFORD, Ph.D. PRESIDENT, OTTERBEIN UNIVERSITY

For guiding the future of learning and discovery — Otterbein celebrates your vision and your leadership.



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About: Annalies Corbin is a champion for STEM and STEAM education through the nonprofit she launched in 2000, the PAST Foundation. With a background in anthropology and nautical archaeology, her mission is to “change the landscape of teaching, learning and the future of work.” The Rockport, Texas, native has spent the past two decades building partnerships with state and local governments, K-12 schools, post-secondary institutions and businesses to create innovative educational programs including Maker Manias, rural educational models and design challenges. The idea is that removing stressful components of traditional learning environments—worksheets and textbooks, for example— can foster a love of learning among students who find great fulfillment in problemsolving and participating in the creative process. Outside work: Corbin is a member of the Ohio Department of Education’s STEM working group, board member for the Ohio Farm Bureau, adjunct associate professor of anthropology at Ohio State University and former assistant professor of nautical archaeology at East Carolina University. She frequently testifies on STEM education issues at the local, state and national levels. What does Columbus need? “Over the past 10 years, growth in STEM jobs was six times as fast as growth


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We need to reimagine, rethink and redesign our educational models so they meet the needs of students now. in non-STEM jobs. Informal programming and cuttingedge technologies are a critical means of help for teachers to strengthen their curriculum. This is vital, as currently one-third of all U.S. students who intend to pursue engineering change their major before graduating, and the proportion of American STEM students is already lower than that of our international peers.”

Corbin’s idea: “The global educational system has become irrelevant and obsolete for today’s educational landscape. We need to reimagine, rethink and redesign our educational models so they meet the needs of students now. My call to action is that Columbus take on this challenge—recognize that the system is ready for massive redesign. Let’s do something meaningful for the next generation of CBUS!”

Annalies Corbin Founder, president and CEO, PAST Foundation

Future 50/January 2020

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About: Michael Corey has made himself indispensable to the city’s social services nonprofits in just a short few years at the helm of the Human Service Chamber of Franklin County. Since he joined in 2017, it has grown from 48 to 79 members, making it the largest the chamber has ever been. The

organization is embedded in issues ranging from advocacy for refugees to food stamps to workforce and immigration policy. The chamber was named one of the 5 Nonprofits to Watch in 2019 by the Columbus Foundation, and it has made significant strides toward a goal of “growing and strengthening one voice on behalf of the human services sector,” says board chair King Stumpp, CEO of Netcare Access. Corey previously was an associate with Bricker & Eckler and has worked for Hillary for America, Children’s Defense Fund, U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown and

Michael Corey Executive director, Human Service Chamber of Franklin County

Children’s Hunger Alliance. Corey holds a juris doctor from Ohio State University Moritz College of Law. Outside work: Franklin County Commissioners’ Leadership Council; Columbus City Council’s Commission on Black Girls; Columbus’ Census 2020 Transportation Subcommittee ; Nonprofit Higher Education Alliance; Mayor Andrew Ginther’s Building Advisory Group; American Constitution Society of Columbus; Ohio State Bar Association Advisory Council on Diversity Initiatives; former board member,

We need to aggressively embrace green policies and regulations to create jobs while mitigating the consequences of climate change. Lower Lights Christian Health Center and Downtown YMCA Advisory Board. What does Columbus need to thrive? “We need to aggressively embrace green policies and regulations to create jobs while mitigating the consequences of climate change. Housing for all—integrated, walkable, energy-efficient neighborhoods. Comprehensive, sustainable multimodal and mass transportation. Drastically improved education system. And a strategy for Columbus’ next 100 years of growth that prioritizes the overall quality of our city and its residents.”

Corey’s idea: “A cross-sector collaboration to devise Columbus’ plan to brace for climate change over the next 10 years while planning for the next century could be a unique, internationally replicable pursuit. The goal should be twofold: To mitigate the inevitable consequences of climate change for our city’s most vulnerable populations, while becoming an international leader with an innovative quiver of plans to slow and reverse climate change in the decades to come.”


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Future 50/January 2020

12/6/19 3:15 PM

Jordan Davis Director, Smart Columbus, Columbus Partnership

About: Jordan Davis, a Westerville native, was part of the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Smart Cities Challenge grant writing team, where she helped coordinate the private follow-on contributions that provided a significant boost to Columbus’ ultimately successful application. She went on to lead the strategic planning for the Smart Columbus initiative; the creation of the Smart Columbus Operating System; development of the Smart

Columbus Experience Center; and the launch of Ohio’s first self-driving shuttle. As staff with the Columbus Partnership, Davis was on the team that made the city of Columbus’ finalist pitch to host the 2016 Democratic National Convention and helped create the Ohio State Student Engagement Initiative to retain students in the region after graduation. She holds a bachelor’s degree in political science and leadership studies from Ohio State University. Outside work: Co-founder of the Central Ohio Leadership Academy, a one-week leadership intensive program with a diverse group of high school leaders; three-time chair of the Create Columbus Commission; board member

of Columbus School for Girls; former board member for Columbus Crew Foundation and Franklinton Development Authority Advisory Board. Davis recently became a resident of the Franklinton neighborhood. What does Columbus need to thrive? “We must think differently about everything in our civic infrastructure to mitigate the pain of [projected regional] growth. Our current growth is not shared equally. To prevent further division, we should urgently and proactively remove the barriers to opportunity. Instead of waiting for a congestion problem similar to Nashville or Austin, commit to high-capacity transit today with dedicated lanes. Let’s make it a norm

Instead of waiting for a congestion problem similar to Nashville or Austin, commit to high-capacity transit.

for employees to get mobility benefits to take other modes to work rather than driving alone. Let’s commit to carbon neutrality. Incentivize market adoption of energy efficient operations and the electrification of transportation.”

Davis’ idea: “This group should author a CEO magazine feature of 10 moonshot ideas that could change the future of Columbus for the better. We could facilitate an ideation retreat to deepen the connections across the cohort and build off the initial ideas held independently. Once a mind is expanded, it can never shrink.”

January 2020/Future 50

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12/6/19 3:15 PM

Katherine Doellman Director of leasing, RPT Realty

RPT’s portfolio includes 49 open-air shopping centers across the country, including the Shops at Lane Avenue in Upper Arlington. She holds a law degree from Ohio State University’s Moritz College of Law. About: Katie Doellman’s career started at L Brands when she joined the retailing giant as a real estate intern. She spent nearly five years there, ultimately being named its real estate director. Doellman joined RPT Realty in 2019 as its director of leasing.

Outside of work: Doellman is a member of the Short North Civic Association and is applying for membership in the Upper Arlington Civic Association. She has been a Pelotonia bike rider for six years. She is a board member of the Criminal Law Journal at

Develop an online networking platform/employment search engine to link homeless job applicants with willing employers. 22

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Ohio State. She also organized a fundraiser to raise more than $10,000 to grant a child’s wish through Make a Wish Foundation. What does Columbus need to thrive? “Every year, Mercer releases a Quality of Living Index. Among the 10 metrics considered is transportation. This metric coupled with the fact that Columbus is the largest city in the U.S. that doesn’t offer a passenger train service means that our public transportation offering is a major growth opportunity. Ways to perfect our public system would include: Adding light rail, rethinking our bus systems to increase ridership, extending bike trails to connect neighborhoods, and adding bike shares to serve minority communities.”

Doellman’s idea: “Ohio’s homeless rate rose in 2018 despite the low unemployment rate. Within one year, the Future 50 could develop an online networking platform/employment search engine to link homeless job applicants with willing employers. This project would encompass engaging participation from both the employers in the community and implementing an ongoing forum to train the homeless on using the online tool.”

Future 50/January 2020

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Falon Donohue CEO, VentureOhio

About: Falon Donohue leads the nonprofit organization that was created to drive a collaborative statewide entrepreneurial ecosystem and increase access to venture capital for Ohio entrepreneurs. In her role she has appeared before the U.S. Congress twice to testify on behalf of the Midwest venture capital industry.

Appointed by the lieutenant governor, Donohue was named the first chairperson of InnovateOhio, which is looking at ways to use technology to improve the lives of all Ohioans. She created the Ohio Watchlist: Ohio’s Top 50 Startups to Watch and is the host of VentureDinner, an annual celebration of 600 entrepreneurs and investors from across the state. Donohue publishes the Ohio VentureReport, an annual survey of investment activity. She’s also the founder of NextGen, a peer group for Midwest venture capitalists. Donohue also is the force behind Sadie Ventures, the

Lead a conversation, a movement and a pledge that focuses on civility and tolerance. 24

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first female-founded venture capital firm in Columbus. Outside of work: Donohue supports the City of Columbus Small Business Assessment, Bunker Labs, Ohio State University Keenan Center for Entrepreneurship, Columbus Chamber, GiveBackHack, Startup Week Columbus, Startup Weekend Columbus and Business Builders Club. What does Columbus need to thrive? “It’s critical that we plan for a future-ready workforce with access to safe and reliable transportation, housing and resources. We need to double down on the efforts and resources that are being poured into pre-K-12 STEM education, recertification programs and micro degrees. We need to think intentionally about urban planning,

density, green spaces and walkable neighborhoods with access to resources.”

Donohue’s idea: “Dr. Martin Luther King said, ‘Hate begets hate; violence begets violence; toughness begets a greater toughness. We must meet the forces of hate with the power of love.’ In this spirit, Columbus should get organized and lead a conversation, a movement and a pledge that focuses on civility and tolerance that expands to our businesses, our schools, our social media and our communities.”

Future 50/January 2020

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Amanda Epp

We may be the Future 50, but along with new residents will come new children, the real future ... A leader’s key responsibility is always to create more leaders.

President, ScriptDrop

dren, the real future. As a new mom and a daughter of educators, education and opportunity for young children in the community is at the core of the work I do every day. A leader’s key responsibility is always to create more leaders. I think it is our responsibility to support the kids and create new leaders.”

About: Amanda Epp has been an early employee on the ground floor of such innovative health care companies as CoverMyMeds and ScriptDrop, where she now leads sales, marketing and business

development. ScriptDrop was founded in Columbus in 2017 with the goal of delivering prescriptions to patients across the United States via private courier, and it’s grown quickly. Epp holds a bachelor’s degree in health care administration from Ohio University and an MBA from Franklin University.

organization she launched in 2018 to empower women to chase their dreams. Epp, who is a new mother to daughter Lydia, is a native of Pickerington and holds a bachelor’s degree in health care administration from Ohio University. She lives in Hilliard with her family, including two French bulldogs, Myles and May.

Outside of work: When she’s not managing a dynamic startup, Epp is working on Go Get the World, a nonprofit

What does Columbus need to thrive? “We may be the Future 50, but along with new residents will come new chil-

Epp’s idea: “Columbus has so many existing events and organizations available already. Because of the saturation, the awareness and the visibility often are not there and they aren’t reaching the right people or as many people as they could. Tapping into the existing events, talent and organizations and using the Future 50’s connections, I think we could empower the current infrastructure to really expand their reach.”

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12/6/19 3:17 PM

Jessica Fleming Radiobiologist, The James Cancer Center

About: Jessica Fleming’s interest in science is rooted in watching her mother’s losing battle with breast cancer for 13 years. She became the first in her family to graduate college, and she went on to earn a PhD in molecular genetics. Fleming has built a career trying to cure cancer, studying the genetics of the disease and developing treatments that result in remission. She has published over 15 peer-reviewed articles, and her

research in radiation oncology has been recognized on the national and international levels. In 2018, she received the Best of ASTRO Translational Science Award, and a prostate cancer genetic test she helped develop was patented this year. Fleming is one of the lead researchers for the Radiation Oncology International Outreach Team, which has forged relationships with leading cancer centers in India, China, Tanzania and dozens of European countries to exchange clinical and research data. Outside work: In 2015, Fleming co-founded the Cap City Biohackers, a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting scientific literacy and advanc-

ing an innovative community. The group focuses on STEM education, citizen science and entrepreneurship. It hopes to open a science maker’s space to be called the Cap City Biospace to give the community access to lab equipment and the expertise and guidance to conduct experiments and connect with fellow science enthusiasts. What does Columbus need? “Affordable, reliable and efficient transportation. Traffic congestion is a problem every major city faces and to circumvent this, Columbus needs a creative solution. As a car-free individual for the past decade, I am constantly thinking of alternative modes of transportation, and while I love the

As a car-free individual for the past decade, I am constantly thinking of alternative modes of transportation. 26

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idea of a subway or light-rail system, I have major concerns due to infrastructure and costassociated risk. Alternative solutions include more frequent routes in designated bus lanes, autonomous vehicle carpools, or even one day autonomous air taxis.”

Fleming’s idea: “I would love to develop a STEM shadowing program serving disadvantaged communities in Columbus. This program would provide real-life exposure and experience to STEM-based careers by pairing students with STEM professionals.”

Future 50/January 2020

12/6/19 3:59 PM

Install one piece of public art every year. securing more than $90 million in venture capital financing from firms such as Drive Capital in Columbus and Kleiner Perkins, which is one of Silicon Valley’s most well-known investors. Outside of work: Frommeyer is a member of the Create Columbus Commission group of young professionals who are engaged in communitybuilding activities. He’s also a member of the Contemporaries at the Columbus Museum of Art, a group of people who share an interest in contemporary art who vote to select a new work for the collection each year. What does Columbus need to thrive? “Density and strong urban development, or else Columbus will sprawl like Atlanta or constrict like San Francisco, and neither are ideal for affordability or accessibility. An incredible commitment to public art on every wall and corner in the urban core would beautify the city since it doesn’t have topographically unique features. I’m an active COTA rider, so let’s put transit front and center as well.”

Alex Frommeyer CEO and co-founder, Beam Dental

About: After receiving a master’s degree in engineering from the University of Louisville, Frommeyer saw an opportunity to bring innova-

tive solutions to the dental insurance industry. Along with Alex Curry and Dan Dykes, he launched Beam Dental from a living room in Kentucky in 2012. The company is founded on the principle that better brushing decreases a person’s chances of needing major dental work, which is expensive. Through a proprietary smart toothbrush, Beam collects brushing data, which is used to reward those

with good habits with lower premiums. Beam’s plans also include a subscription service with an electric toothbrush, replacement heads, toothpaste and floss. Since moving to Columbus in 2014, the company has grown to employ more than 200 people who serve tens of thousands of customers across the country. Frommeyer has been instrumental in Beam Dental

Frommeyer’s idea: “Install one piece of public art every year.”

January 2020/Future 50

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We must change our culture around cars and transportation. adjunct faculty member at the John Glenn College of Public Affairs. She’s also involved with ULI Columbus, Columbus City Schools’ Neighborhood School Development Partnership, Jefferson Avenue Center, Whitehall Bexley Rotary Club, Columbus Metropolitan Club, American Heart Association and Delta Sigma Theta Sorority. What does Columbus need to thrive? “We must change our culture around cars and transportation. As the Insight2050 report suggests, our civic and private sector leaders must make decisions that shift how we develop land and ensure that affordable housing is proximate to growing job centers. This requires bold and regional thinking.”

Autumn Glover Government affairs and community relations, Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center; interim president, PACT

About: Glover led the planning process for Partners Achieving Community Transformation, or PACT, which is a partnership of the university, city of Columbus


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and the Columbus Metropolitan Housing Authority. This work includes an emphasis on community engagement and relationship building. It was through Glover’s leadership that PACT was awarded $30 million of federal grant money to implement the Blueprint for Community Investment. The plan launched in 2013 and since then the Near East Side has made progress toward revitalizing as a neighborhood of

choice with improving public schools, mixed-income housing and community wellness as a priority. Her leadership was instrumental in other projects, including a healthy community center set to open in 2020. Glover continues to build and expand relationships with both internal and external stakeholders to create partnerships for success. Outside of work: Glover is an

Glover’s idea: “A tactical project to do long-range planning for expanding opportunities to ‘tipping point’ neighborhoods. Tipping point neighborhoods are those where there is stability, but they are not destinations people are actively seeking to live and play. These recommendations might include public funding prioritization, school feeder pattern adjustments, transit routes, zoning code and placemaking.”

Future 50/January 2020

12/6/19 4:17 PM


Matthew Goldstein CEO, Besa

About: A weekend job at a suicide hotline gave Matthew Goldstein the overwhelming sense that he needed to be doing more. But finding opportunities to engage in the community and give back wasn’t easy. So Goldstein came up with the idea of Besa, an organization that coordinates volunteering and give-back experiences for or-

ganizations. It was a hit. Since it was founded seven years ago, 30,000-plus volunteers have worked on more than 5,000 projects, making $2 million in direct community impact. Through relationships with 15 corporate partners, an additional $6 million has gone to the community. Goldstein previously founded WOOF! Downtown Pet Care and worked at Abercrombie & Fitch and Retail Forward. Outside work: Nina West philanthropic adviser; Columbus Foundation Emerging Leaders, Gifts of Kindness Committee member; Create Columbus Commission;

Above all, we need an army of thoughtful, passionate citizens willing to not only think together but also act together.

Humana, Well-Being Committee member; United Way of Central Ohio, Columbus Volunteer Challenge Committee member; GenNext Steering Committee member; Pride Leadership Fellow; and volunteer, North Central Mental Health Services. What does Columbus need to thrive? “Strong and forward-thinking leadership. Transportation solutions. Affordable housing. Smart redevelopment plans for areas like Franklinton and Linden. Fresh, healthy foods for lowincome families. Support for young mothers. A steadfast response to the drug epidemic. Quality education for everyone. And much, much more. Above all, we need an army of thoughtful, passionate citizens willing to not only think together but also act together. We need to make giving back easier so that it

becomes part of people’s— and companies’—everyday lives and missions, not just something they consider at the holidays or a couple times a year.”

Matthew’s idea: “I would love to see this group tackle a project addressing race inequalities. In recent months and years, we’ve regressed in this arena. Right now, over 50 percent of white Americans don’t believe we have a race problem. We do. It’s not just a black issue or a brown issue. It’s an all-of-us issue. If we can address it, we’ll advance our community and economy like never before.”

January 2020/Future 50

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Help every resident have access to job training and job search tools. in an effort to allow students access to more male role models. He’s a substitute teacher and a Junior Achievement classroom volunteer. Griffith also is a First Community Foundation volunteer board member. What does Columbus need to thrive? “A decentralized education system that helps support disadvantaged individuals and communities to ensure everyone is supported and thrives in our economic and population growth. Organizations like the Columbus Metropolitan Library and Junior Achievement reach populations that are sometimes left behind in areas of economic growth. How can we tap into that to help every resident have access to job training and job search tools?”

Brad Griffith President, Buckeye Interactive

About: Griffith is an entrepreneurial innovator with extensive software development experience and an interest in business productivity and leadership development.


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He has been developing web-based and client/server applications for over a decade at Buckeye Interactive. The firm was built to be different from other web design firms. It combines the best of software engineering, design, and strategic planning to provide clients with a sustainable, maintainable website or mobile app. The company has an average annual revenue growth rate of 27 percent over the past 10 years.

Griffith is an advocate for open-source software, particularly for startups, nonprofits and government entities. He’s a graduate of the U.S. Small Business Administration’s ScaleUp America program and a current participant of its Emerging Leaders program. Outside of work: Griffith founded Dads of New Albany, the first volunteer organization focused on dads with kids in New Albany schools

Griffith’s idea: “Let’s develop a unique workforce development educational series inspired by democratized education and free training and development programs. We would focus not just on software development skills, but also bring in speakers to address topics such as career and life skills that will empower a broader workforce than the more selective programs. Organizations would support job placement for graduates.”

Future 50/January 2020

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Derek Grosso Co-founder of Second Date Social and owner of City Venture Holdings (parent company for Columbus Young Professionals Club, Music City YPs, CityPulse Guides and Columbus Impact Academy)

About: When city leaders were mourning the annual loss of talented young graduates to other regions in the years leading up to the Great Recession, Derek Grosso was thinking about ways to connect the ones who stayed. Since he founded the CYP Club in 2005, he’s connected 25,000 young professionals, making it the largest membership organization of young professionals/millennials in the United States.

With events ranging from social mixers to professional development to volunteering to sports activities, CYP Club contributes $2.1 million annually in economic impact to Central Ohio. Its members have volunteered more than 100,000 hours and donated $535,000 to local charities. He is taking the CYP Club model to cities across the country, having launched Music City Young Professionals in Nashville, and has served as consultant to more than 50 YP initiatives over the past five years in nearly a dozen cities. In 2018, he launched the Columbus Impact Academy for emerging leaders, and in 2019, Grosso co-founded Second Date Social with his wife, Nicci Sprouse-Grosso, to

take meeting singles offline in a fun, low-pressure environment. A native of Long Island, New York, Grosso holds a bachelor of business administration from George Washington University.

infrastructure. It’s something all cities and regions are facing, but with our people (who I believe are our greatest asset), we can achieve more by working together.”

Outside work: Upper Arlington Volleyball Booster Club president, Experience Columbus Membership Advisory Committee member. What does Columbus need? “We need to be focused on welcoming our prospective new residents, but we also need to provide greater care and open arms to those who are already here—and who need our help. We need to provide better access to jobs, food, education, housing and

I think it’s time we had a signature landmark that also speaks to the talent of our hometown.

Grosso’s idea: “With murals going up all around the city over the past few years, I think it’s time we had a signature landmark that also speaks to the talent of our hometown. I’d love to host a city-wide call for entries and raise funding to commission a local artist to create an iconic, large-scale monument, sculpture or public artwork.”

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About: Ali Haque is a litigator who became a partner at Bricker & Eckler about a year ago. He is a Muslim who

has a passion for improving diversity in the legal profession—both internally at the firm and externally through involvement with the American Bar Association, the Minority Corporate Counsel Association, the Asian Pacific American Bar Association, the Ohio State Bar Association and the Columbus Bar Association. Haque has been involved

extensively with each. He also has distinguished himself through his work with a prominent local Fortune 100 insurance company. Outside of work: Haque is immediate past president, Asian Pacific American Bar Association of Central Ohio; a 2019 Ohio State Bar Foundation fellow; a fellow on the Leadership Council on Legal

A community health project focused on children. Diversity; past chair of the American Bar Association’s Young Lawyers Committee on Business Law; a member of Bricker & Eckler’s diversity committee; and chair of Vassar College alumni interviewing. What does Columbus need to thrive? “Transportation, tech job growth and affordable housing. Columbus can use emerging transportation technology to make the region more accessible, and autonomous cars can help alleviate traffic congestion and the need to own a car. Many cities experiencing growth have a significant presence of tech jobs. And as Columbus continues to grow, we need to find ways to grow affordable housing.”

Ali Haque Partner, Bricker & Eckler


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Haque’s idea: “A community health project focused on children. Let’s find ways to improve access to healthy food and safe physical activities. We can work with the City of Columbus, local school districts, Ohio State, Nationwide Children’s and local hospital networks to collaborate. I’d also like a project focused on facilitating and incubating ideas for improving access to affordable housing.”

Future 50/January 2020

12/6/19 4:49 PM

Shannon Hardin President, Columbus City Council

About: Shannon Hardin, the youngest president to lead Columbus City Council in memory and the first openly LGBTQ council president in the city’s history, embodies the smart, open, progressive Columbus the city is striving to become. “President Hardin understands the intersection of identities as a black gay man, allowing him to prioritize those folks who have not always sat on the dais in Council Cham-

bers,” a colleague says. He led community approval for restructuring the City Council to ensure all neighborhoods have the chance to be represented. Another of Hardin’s areas of focus is transit and development planning with the Insight2050 Corridor Concepts study: “We know that a million people are moving to the Columbus region, but we cannot add a million new cars to our roads.” Equity for boys and young men of color is one of Hardin’s commitments. Among other initiatives, he has worked to level the playing field for men of color in the justice system. Because they are disproportionately charged with marijuana possession, in 2019 council voted to reduce penalties for the

charge to a low level—one that does not involve incarceration or large fines. Outside work: Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission, Conference of Minority Transportation Officials of Columbus, Young Democrats of America, Franklin County Democratic Party, National League of Cities Transit Committee co-chair. What does Columbus need to thrive? “With the help of MORPC, during the Insight2050 Corridor Concepts study we brought together a group of partners to analyze how various transit and growth strategies would impact families, businesses and local governments in

Columbus needs to reform our zoning and building codes to encourage growth and promote affordability.

Central Ohio. We learned that focusing new housing and businesses around mass transit corridors is better for our personal finances, our public health and the Central Ohio tax base. Columbus needs to reform our zoning and building codes to encourage growth and promote housing affordability.”

Hardin’s idea: “Create an accessible Columbus region directory/clearinghouse of Millennials (20-40 years old, broadly) interested in serving on civic boards with the goal of increasing Millennial representation on Columbus boards.”

January 2020/Future 50

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12/6/19 3:18 PM

Kristin Harper Author and co-founder, Pacesetters Unlimited

About: As previous global vice president of wound care and thermal at Cardinal Health, Kristin Harper led the post-acquisition integration of a market-leading global business while creating a high-performing culture for the newly combined team. Before joining Cardinal Health, Harper worked at Procter & Gamble and the Hershey’s

Co. where she got to work on behalf of globally recognized brands such as Crest, Oral-B and Kisses candy. In 2015, she established a $25,000 endowed scholarship for Ohio students attending her alma mater, Florida A&M University. With her husband she co-founded Pacesetters Unlimited, whose mission is to build a pipeline of AfricanAmerican scholars with a focus on historically black colleges and universities. In less than 10 years, Pacesetters has raised more than $100,000 for scholarships, workshops, career shadow days at Cardinal Health and college tours for students.

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Outside of work: Harper is a lifetime member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority and co-chaired a campaign that raised more than $160,000 for scholarships. She’s the author of The Heart of Love’s Resurrection: A Spiritual Journey through Marriage, Divorce and Remarrying the Same Man and is working on her second book about using emotional intelligence insights to advance a career. What does Columbus need to thrive? “Stimulate development through economic incentives to support small businesses and startups; celebrate artistic expression across the community’s diverse cultures and ethnicities; support education, community centers, parks and recreations so that our youngest generations learn

how to live, work and play together; and celebrate legacy organizations, institutions and residents while highlighting newer members of the Columbus family.”

Harper’s idea: “I propose that the Future 50 paint murals around the city that celebrate our rich legacy and cast a vision for the communities of the future. Art is timeless. It transcends generations and speaks volumes without the need for words.”

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We must recognize we have a labor mismatch and invest in reskilling. and Avanade, a division of Accenture. Outside of work: Harrison is on the leadership team for the Conscious Capitalism Columbus chapter. He serves on the boards of Gladden Community House, Columbus Metropolitan Club and Columbus State Community College Foundation. What does Columbus need to thrive? “Columbus has an astonishingly high rate of poverty at over 20 percent, almost double the national average. Whether it is new citizens moving to the city or those already here, we must recognize we have a labor mismatch and invest in reskilling. For us to grow into a Smart City, we will need to come together and coordinate to take on this challenge directly.”

Josh Harrison President, Improving–Columbus

About: At technology management and consulting firm Improving–Columbus, Josh Harrison’s primary responsi-

bilities are business development, talent acquisition and building and sustaining trust within the company and information technology community. He joined Improving in 2012 as vice president of consulting and helped the consulting team grow revenue from $1.5 million to more than $5 million. Under his leadership, the firm is a practitioner of

“conscious capitalism,” which is rooted in a purpose beyond profit and creating value for all stakeholders with whom Improving interacts. That includes investors, employees, customers, vendors, nonprofits, community groups and the environment. Prior to joining Improving, he held a number of roles with technology and advisory firms including Leading Edje

Harrison’s idea: “Reskilling our labor force will be the great challenge and opportunity for Columbus going forward. As a group, there are three things we can do: Private companies can communicate what jobs are needed now and in the future; taking the input from the private sector, educational and training providers to design flexible programs to augment traditional approaches; and those in the social sector can help by supporting students.”

January 2020/Future 50

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12/6/19 3:18 PM

Dr. B.J. Hicks Neurological physicians co-director Comprehensive Stroke Program– OhioHealth

About: Stroke has fallen from the No. 4 killer to No. 5 in large part because of enhanced treatment protocols and new programs such as “target blood pressure” that have been put into practice, including under Dr. B.J. Hicks’ leadership at Riverside Methodist Hospital. He took on a critical role in helping

Riverside elevate its stroke care and treat patients according to American Heart Association/American Stroke Association guidelines. That resulted in the hospital being recognized as one of the associations’ first Comprehensive Stroke Centers in the nation. Hicks, who is local AHA/ ASA president, helped lead advocacy efforts regarding a stroke facility recognition bill in Ohio, which was recently signed into law. He brought together physicians, stroke coordinators, EMS personnel, hospital government relations staff and nurses. A champion for advocacy, he

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often participates in AHA/ ASA meetings after working an all-night shift. Outside of work: On behalf of the AHA/ASA, Hicks has spoken at community events, led “lunch and learns” at businesses and met with elected officials. Last summer, he helped counsel hundreds of participants in the Columbus African American Male Health Initiative about their personal risk factors and how to live a heart-healthy life. What does Columbus need to thrive? “Columbus’s collaborative and civic worldview— the Columbus Way—long has been and should remain one of the city’s greatest treasures. By embracing and engaging in public and private partnerships, Columbus has developed a model that benefits businesses and residents

alike. As the city continues to grow, it is critical to maintain the Columbus Way model of civility. “

Hicks’ idea: “The Empathy Project. Positive, lasting impact begins at the micro level closest to the community it serves. But to have a lasting impact on the community we serve, we need to better understand and recognize each other’s perspectives through active engagement. Through the Empathy Project, each Future 50 member can identify a nonprofit with which they are not familiar and volunteer.”

Future 50/January 2020

12/6/19 4:18 PM

Sheri Chaney Jones

We need to apply an equity and gender lens to the housing issue to ensure the voices of this region’s most vulnerable residents are heard.

Founder and president Measurement Resources

What does Columbus need to thrive? “Columbus isn’t building homes fast enough. In response, community partners are in the process of creating a strategy that will develop investment and policy recommendations to support mixed-income neighborhoods and growth. We need to apply an equity and gender lens to the housing issue to ensure the voices of this region’s most vulnerable residents are heard.”

About: Sheri Chaney Jones founded Measurement Resources in 2008, a business that uses datadriven approaches to help government and nonprofit organizations move their

missions forward. This year, Jones launched her second company, SureImpact. It uses data to prove nonprofit organizations’ unique impact and realize efficiencies so they can focus on the things that are truly moving needles. Jones is an advocate for closing the racial and gender wealth gaps. She helped lead an effort on behalf of the National Association of Women Business Owners-Columbus creating

a Women’s Enterprise Certification for the more than 330,000 women-owned businesses across Ohio. Outside of work: Jones has provided advisory and consulting services to the Kirwan Institute of the Study of Race and Ethnicity, the Center for Family Research, the Center for Learning Excellence and Fisher College of Business at Ohio State University. She is also the vice president of NAWBO.

Jones’ idea: “The Future 50 cohort could address pay equity for women by implementing a pilot mentorship program. This program would engage 50 local nonprofits to identify 50 female clients who would like to take their careers to the next level through mentorship, networking and skills development. These 50 women would be matched with the Future 50 honorees. If selected, Measurement Resources would be willing to volunteer to help develop the measures and survey tools needed to track and analyze the outcomes of this pilot.”

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About: As the director of advancement for LifeCare Alliance, Rebecca Hurd has been tasked with growing the agency’s endowment to $20 million, which will generate an additional $1 million a year in revenue that LifeCare can use to carry out its mission. The agency serves seniors and people with medical challenges and disabilities across Central Ohio with health and nutrition programs such as Meals-on-Wheels. In the 18 months since LifeCare’s Legacy Endowment Campaign was launched, Hurd has helped the agency advance halfway to its goal. Hurd was named to the 2020 class of Leadership Columbus and holds a bachelor’s degree in music/voice performance from Central Michigan University, a master’s in arts administration from Florida State University and a certificate in biblical leadership from Vineyard Institute. Outside of work: Hurd is a volunteer leader at Vineyard Columbus, Pregnancy Decision Health Centers and Meals-on-Wheels, and a development consultant for the executive director and board of the Opera Project Columbus. What does Columbus need to thrive? “There was a recent discussion that referenced how Columbus, while being ranked in the top 15 largest cities, does not have the feel of a New York City or Chicago, Los Angeles and others. I think this is part of Columbus’ charm, and it will


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Columbus, while being ranked in the top 15 largest cities, does not have the feel of a New York City or Chicago, Los Angeles and others. I think this is part of Columbus’ charm. be important to maintain the unique character of our city as it grows.”

Hurd’s idea: “We could conduct a survey of residents, businesses, nonprofit organizations and churches to gauge the most beloved qualities of Columbus. This would allow the groups planning for the future to know key elements of Columbus that we should strive to protect and celebrate. A sister project could also be a small task force that comes out of this to help promote those characteristics across all sectors of our city, which would integrate with the need to attract new talent to help fill the growth in jobs.”

Rebecca Hurd Director of advancement, LifeCare Alliance

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LifeCare Alliance congratulates Rebecca Hurd on her selection to the inaugural class of Future 50! Care, compassion, and commitment describe Rebecca’s leadership style. As an Agency executive, her unwavering dedication to the clients is realized daily as she leads the Legacy Endowment Campaign. The agency’s endowment will ensure a pathway for future caring, as the need for LifeCare Alliance’s services continues to grow.

LifeCare Alliance empowers our community to live well through nutrition, health, and support services. < Strategic nonprofit leadership through merger partnerships, social enterprise, volunteer engagement, fundraising, and building an endowment. < Critical, life-sustaining services for over 30,000 central Ohio neighbors. < Sustainable business for the future. Charles W. Gehring, President and CEO January 2020/Future 50

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12/6/19 3:20 PM

Brett Kaufman Founder and CEO, Kaufman Development

About: Brett Kaufman left Schottenstein Real Estate Group as president to found Kaufman Development, a real estate firm creating some of Columbus’ most vibrant projects including Gravity in Franklinton, 250 High and the reimagined LeVeque Tower. His belief is that art and design play a central role in helping people live connected, self-actualized lives. The residences, offices and com-

munity spaces at Gravity reflect Kaufman’s core ethos of wellness, sustainability, innovation and philanthropy. The Bexley grad has been named Building Industry Association Developer of the Year, Ernst & Young Regional Entrepreneur of the Year, NAIOP Project of the Year and is the recipient of the ULI Project Excellence in Development Award. His company is a regular on Inc.’s list of 5,000 fastest-growing U.S. companies. Outside work: Board member of the Columbus Partnership, Besa, KIPP Journey Academy, Community Shelter Board, Ohio State University, James Cancer Hospital, Children’s Hunger Alliance, Ronald

McDonald House, Columbus Jewish Foundation, Columbus Jewish Day School, Greater Columbus Arts Council and Wexner Center for the Arts. Participant in Ohio State University & Harvard Young Leaders Program. What does Columbus need to thrive? “We need to lean into the creative culture that is really at the center of economic development. As a community, we must understand the direct correlation between design, architecture, placemaking, public art and meaningful content. This is not just something nice to have—it’s critical to attracting and retaining talent. And we must see it that way.”

We need to lean into the creative culture that is really at the center of economic development. This is not just something nice to have—it’s critical. 40

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Kaufman’s idea: “I would love to see us start a public mural and outdoor art festival that would paint the city, much like Wynwood in Miami, Crush Walls in Denver, Bright Walls in Michigan or other festivals that celebrate the public arts. I would love to see us as a community paint the city with beautiful murals and also engage the residents in neighborhoods that need support. We could get artists from around the world to paint the public spaces, but also paint homes all over Linden, The Hilltop and other areas to help uplift those individuals and neighborhoods. It would be amazing!”

Future 50/January 2020

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Colin McGinnis

Develop a shared services program to provide better benefits to nonprofit employees.

CEO, South Side Early Learning

Columbus, Kindergarten Readiness Advisory Council, Pediatric Vital Signs and Nationwide Children’s Hospital. What does Columbus need to thrive? “Columbus is booming. With this boom has come rapid growth and a new opportunity to develop a comprehensive universal early education program driven by public-private partnerships. This would provide our youngest citizens and their families the foundation they need to thrive, develop an infrastructure we can use to attract new residents, retain our workforce and sustain economic growth.”

About: Colin McGinnis was hired to lead South Side Early Learning in 2018. Since 1922, it has provided care and early childhood education for thousands of children.

McGinnis paved the way for Project NUDL, an upcoming social enterprise training and research institute that intends to change the way educators nurture, understand, discover and learn during the first 2,000 days of a child’s life. NUDL will provide opportunities to share the center’s nearly 100 years of knowledge and resources, test new ideas and advance early education. McGinnnis also is working

to narrow the $39,797 pay gap that exists between the average preschool and K-12 teacher’s salary. Through the NUDL model, the center will give back 30 percent of impact dollars to invest in network members’ staff. Outside of work: McGinnis is a Family Pride Network board member. He’s also involved in committee work with the Early Childhood Advisory Council, Future Ready

McGinnis’ idea: “Many nonprofit employees are truly working a labor of love due to long hours, low salaries and benefits that are less than desired. We have hit a high of nearly 20 percent turnover nationally in the sector. In bringing together 50 leaders and innovators, we have access to a vast network and incredible talent that could develop a shared services program to provide better benefits to nonprofit employees.”

January 2020/Future 50

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12/6/19 4:20 PM

About: Amanda Leclerc has been a leader at Huckleberry House, Central Ohio’s primary provider of services for youth experiencing crises including homelessness, for 20 years. She has played different roles, including managing the region’s only transitional living program for 18- to 22-year-olds moving from homelessness to independence. Leclerc became the agency’s first housing director in October. Under her leadership, the program has grown from 30 apartments to 45 units. In her new role, she will oversee more than 100 units of housing for formerly homeless youths by the end of 2020. For each of the past several years, the Transitional Living Program has prevented 75 or more youths from entering the homeless system. Through her planned program expansion, Huck House and its affiliated programs will keep more than 120 people each year out of the adult homeless system. No matter their current situation, Leclerc has an altruistic belief that every young person should be given opportunities to create the life they see for themselves. Outside of work: Leclerc is a weekend crisis specialist for Netcare, which provides mental health and substance abuse crisis intervention, assessment and referral services. She also is involved in extracurricular club support at her children’s schools. What does Columbus need to thrive? “For those of us with homes, jobs, an


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Every young person should be given opportunities to create the life they see for themselves. education and support networks, thriving looks very different than it does to the population I work with in Columbus. In order for our community to thrive, we must ensure the entire community is equally included in the opportunities growth will bring.”

Leclerc’s idea: “Because Columbus has such a great income disparity, the Future 50 could work to bring together business leaders with members of our community who have not experienced the positive impact of growth. Through in person dialog and video storytelling, both sides of the growth experience could gain an understanding of the impact we all have on one another.”

Amanda Leclerc Housing director Huckleberry House

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Amanda Leclerc

A Future 50 Changemaker Since 1970, Huckleberry House has been reaching young people and their families to build stronger lives. We do this work in four core programs: • Central Ohio’s only 24-hour crisis shelter for teens • An 18-month transitional living program for formerly homeless youth preparing to live independently • A youth outreach program that connects youth with services and housing • Counseling services that help youth and families identify strengths to overcome challenging situations


provided to teach skills for improving interactions with family members


transitional living program graduates developed independent living skills and secured permanent housing


in schools, at community hangouts, on the streets, and at the YOP Shop

229 YOUTH AND THEIR FAMILIES received ongoing support to develop communication, anger management, conflict resolution, coping, and self-sufficiency skills

Friday, April 24, 2020 Join us outside at COSI Register by March 30 at

PROUD TO BE NAMED BEST SMALL NONPROFIT Huckleberry House, Inc. | 1421 Hamlet Street | Columbus, OH 43201 614.294.8097 | January 2020/Future 50

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12/6/19 3:20 PM

Matt Miller Partner, municipal finance group, Ice Miller

About: A practicing attorney for more than 15 years in Columbus and Chicago before that, Matt Miller advises and counsels government entities with an aim to help others adopt innovative financing ideas such as social impact

Food deserts need to be eliminated in Columbus. 44

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bond programs and integrating blockchain technology into government finance. He works primarily with economic development projects, public-private partnerships with residential and commercial development and other economic incentive programs. Miller holds a law degree from Capital University and also attended the University of Oxford’s Saïd Business School, receiving the FinTech Programme Certification. He is also part of the Sargent Shriver National Center on Poverty Law Professionals Council, which is an organization focused on creating a government with political systems that don’t support racism and poverty. Outside of work: In addition

to the Shriver Center on Poverty Law, Miller is involved with the Legal Aid Society of Columbus, is a Tenant Advocacy Project volunteer, a Downtown Residents’ Association of Columbus board member and is a past volunteer at the Special Olympics. Miller also owns an Airbnb rental property and invests in cryptocurrency. What does Columbus need to thrive? “Reliable, accessible and affordable public transportation—especially as the city continues to grow. Columbus can solve this problem by becoming a model for the future of public transportation through the use of technology and partnering with the private sector.”

Miller’s idea: “Food deserts need to be eliminated in Columbus by providing affordable access to locally grown organic food to residents. The Future 50 project would involve partnering with local farmers, grocery stores and other organizations with similar focus to provide these services, which could be in the form of food trucks, pop-up grocery stands and community gardens, along with education for residents of all ages about the benefits of making healthy food choices.”

Future 50/January 2020

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About: Chanel Nelson leads the talent management and associate development efforts for Continental Office and has nearly a decade of human resources experience. Her

efforts have helped the company receive the Columbus Young Professional’s “Wonderful Workplaces” award for two straight years. Nelson also is leading technology implementation projects that will have a direct impact on every associate. She believes technology, in fact, is one of three key areas that is especially important to the associate experience because it enhances communication efficiency and

collaboration and teamwork. A pleasing office environment and on-site conveniences are the other two. Among her achievements, Nelson was selected to join a team of 15 human resources young professionals from around the country to advise the Society for Human Resource Management. Outside of work: Through her work with the Columbus Urban League Young Profes-

Create inclusive workplaces for our growing population by providing flexibility. sionals, Nelson brought programming to the city’s young professional community focusing on personal, professional and financial development. She also is also taking motherhood by storm and documenting it along the way with her new Instagram blog, @motherhoodis_. She was an early member of the Fit4Mom Columbus east franchise. What does Columbus need to thrive? “Columbus has a huge immigrant population, which I’m sure will largely make up the 1 million new residents. It will be critical for Columbus companies to be innovative in how they create inclusive workplaces for our growing population by providing flexibility that fits working styles and preferences for various groups of people.”

Chanel Nelson Senior human resources generalist, Continental Office

Nelson’s idea: “How do we create a ‘workplace of the future’ type of service for our local organizations to be one of the nation’s most benchmarked cities? Simply stated, workplace disruption. Gallup states that 51 percent of employees are actively/ passively looking for a new job. An annual project that focused on a service that would boost associate engagement is what I have in mind.”

January 2020/Future 50

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12/6/19 4:42 PM

Lacey Picazo Founder and principal ZoCo Design

About: An award-winning creative, Lacey Picazo is the founder of ZoCo Design, a brand strategy and user experience design agency that made its way onto the 2019 Inc. 5000 list. She has built a reputation for preparing brands for what’s next—identifying opportunities that incite transformation and growth

for nonprofits and startups to Fortune 500 clients. Picazo has sponsored and dedicated in-kind services to Startup Week, Startup Grind, Columbus Society of Communicating Arts, Rev1 Ventures Expert Network, Young Entrepreneurs Academy, the MidOhio Foodbank and others. Picazo also has led efforts to build educational resources for the community and startups through Lumos, the accelerator she co-founded. She helped build curriculum with the Lumos team to teach courses on design thinking, civic innovation and entrepreneurial education for moving

the Columbus innovation economy forward. Outside of work: Picazo is a board member and past president of the Columbus Society of Communicating Arts. She’s a member of the program advisory committee of the Modern College of Design, on customer excellence committee of the Mid-Ohio Foodbank and a forum member at Invision Design. What does Columbus need? “To continue to build upon our successful entrepreneurial ecosystem, working together to use the brilliance of our

Use our talent to solve the big, hairy, human challenges that plague our community—hunger, transportation and the future of senior care. 46

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talent to solve the big, hairy, human challenges that plague our community—hunger, transportation and the future of senior care.”

Picazo’s idea: “To tackle one of the biggest social challenges of our city, such as the future of senior care. I would love to bring my expertise in design research and design thinking to dissect this problem with the other 49 members—learning by collaborating with other Columbus organizations to map the challenges and experiences of those affected.”

Future 50/January 2020

12/6/19 4:23 PM

John Rush

[We need] creative and supportive employment models for individuals impacted by the criminal justice system, generational poverty and addiction.

President and CEO, CleanTurn

About: John Rush has launched multiple social enterprise ventures in Chicago and Columbus. Franklinton-based CleanTurn offers commercial cleaning services and employs people with barriers to employment such as incarceration and addiction. Since its 2012 founding and with support from investors and the Columbus Foundation and

Tony Wells Foundation, it has provided supportive employment to nearly 800 people in the Columbus region. Rush also launched sister enterprise She Has A Name Cleaning Services to employ survivors of domestic violence and human trafficking, which it later merged into the CleanTurn brand. The organization also operates the Third Way Café in the Hilltop neighborhood. “Leveraging the market demand for our services, we are seeking to dismantle the idea that a person’s past dictates their future,” Rush says. “We must reconsider conceptions of justice that are limited to

retribution and punishment and instead further ideas of justice that include reconciliation, rehabilitation and restoration.” Outside work: Rush serves on multiple nonprofit boards, teaches classes in the local jail and state prisons and enjoys spending time with his eight kids and their many activities. Rush loves reading, biking, swimming, basketball, art, music and old and foreign films. He holds five graduate degrees (theology, philosophy, history, nonprofit management and an MBA from Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University).

What does Columbus need? “Walkable communities; urban farming; a thriving arts collection reflecting history and a diversity of traditions; respect and appreciation for religious ideas (including non-Western traditions and atheism); a strong focus on education in the humanities and arts at the grade school and high school levels coupled with intense appreciation for the trades, technology and other fields in need of labor; and creative and supportive employment models for individuals impacted by the criminal justice system, generational poverty and addiction.”

Rush’s idea: “[We could create a] Humanities and the Trades conference attracting high school, college and grad school students and professionals from every community (including prison) with global speakers, practical workshops, music, art and books.”

January 2020/Future 50

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12/6/19 4:22 PM

About: As Central Ohio embarks upon a time of exponential growth, changing the way in which people travel will be critically important.

Letty Schamp is working to alter the way people think about streets as public spaces that serve people, too, and not just cars. The goal is to move away from building streets and highways that serve only to move single-occupancy vehicles as fast as possible, which has proven to hurt communities in terms of safety, quality of life and segregation of neighborhoods. Schamp authored the first

Complete Streets Policy in Central Ohio, which was adopted by the city of Hilliard in 2012. One recently completed infrastructure project increased vehicle capacity while slowing vehicle speeds through the construction of two roundabouts. That project also built more than two miles of trails, added street lighting and built enhanced pedestrian crossings to connect schools,

We should listen to leaders in disadvantaged neighborhoods to find out what their communities need. neighborhoods, parks, trails and community facilities. Outside of work: Schamp serves as chair of the Central Ohio Greenways board and on the Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission’s sustainability advisory committee. She also serves on other regional working groups and committees focused on mobility and safety. What does Columbus need to thrive? “New residents and more jobs bring a lot of exciting opportunity to Central Ohio, but we need to make sure that our region’s successes are shared equitably. Columbus needs to invest in more mobility options to serve all people.”

Letty Schamp Deputy city engineer, city of Hilliard


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L i c C

S i a q C Schamp’s idea: “An annual project should include some way to identify and engage leaders in some of Central Ohio’s disadvantaged neighborhoods. Then we should listen to them to find out what their communities need before we start a project. So often, I think we have ideas of what struggling communities need, but we do not take the time to ask and listen.”

L a



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• City of Hilliard Deputy City Engineer • Future 50 Honoree • Active Transportation Advocate

Letty’s Schamp’s dedication, passion, and vision for improving transportation and connectivity in her community and throughout Central Ohio epitomize the City of Hilliard’s credo: “Real People. Real Possibilities.” She is a thought leader and advocate for safe and innovative traffic design, alternative transportation, and collaborative regional partnerships that improve quality of life, health, and opportunity by connecting Central Ohio communities with regional trails. Letty exemplifies the City of Hilliard’s dedicated and professional public servants whose focus on

excellence and customer service goes beyond mere words. She is a role model of the innovative spirit built into the DNA of this City, where we are committed to providing the ideal environment for future-focused industries, corporate offices, advanced manufacturing, and high-tech companies. We work every day to create outstanding quality of life and a business-friendly environment that make Hilliard a community of choice for living, working, learning, and playing.



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12/3/19 4:48 PM

Brian Schottenstein President Schottenstein Real Estate Group

The more open it is to innovative developments with public-private partnerships, the better off Columbus will be. more than 104,000 multifamily units. Outside of work: Schottenstein is involved with the Urban Land Institute, Jewish Columbus board, LifeTown board and the Ohio State University Hillel board. What does Columbus need to thrive? “Columbus is a great place to live now, but it has potential for even more growth and attracting new people in the future as the population estimates show. Solid municipalities understand that new developments will ultimately correlate with job growth and attract young people to move to Central Ohio. The more open it is to innovative developments with publicprivate partnerships, the better off Columbus will be in the future.”

About: Brian Schottenstein leads the family owned real estate development company that has projects spread across Central Ohio, including the first large multifamily


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development ever approved in Powell called Powell Grand. He also was recently in charge of obtaining approvals of the Jerome Grand development in Jerome Township, Northlake Summit in Berkshire Township, Orange Grand in Orange Township and a 1,000-unit mixed use development in Liberty Township. Schottenstein has helped Schottenstein Real Estate Group expand into markets

outside of Central Ohio such as Cincinnati, Kentucky and Florida with more than 4,000 units in construction since he started working at the company. He was responsible for receiving zoning approvals for the new Central Gardens Grand development in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida. Schottenstein recently became president of the Columbus Apartment Association, which has more than 330 members and represents

Schottenstein’s idea: “Develop a memorial park that shows the history of Columbus and recognizes the pioneers of our great city. This project would be to celebrate the remarkable history of Columbus and inspire others to do the same. I would also like to have a project to help students grow outside of the classroom.”

Future 50/January 2020

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Kimberly Sharp Senior director of development Central Ohio Transit Authority

About: As deputy director of planning and development for the city of Westerville from 2013 to November, when she joined COTA, Kimberly Sharp led various initiatives as a change agent in that city. One of her largest projects was the Westerville Community Plan, a comprehensive framework for 20 years of growth that was adopted in

2017 and included input from thousands of residents and business leaders. As the project leader, Sharp had the opportunity to coordinate with regional partners, including the Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission and COTA, and collaborate with local community partners such as Otterbein University, the Westerville City School District and Westerville Chamber of Commerce. As an Urban Land Institute member, Sharp has participated in progressive conversations for the Central Ohio region, including bringing in thought leaders from other cities.

Outside of work: Sharp is an Uptown Westerville board member and volunteers with the city’s Saturday farmer’s market. What does Columbus need to thrive? “What other similar cities have presented this past year that resonates with me as necessary for the Central Ohio area. (1) Establish affordable housing options before you are in crisis mode—Charlotte, North Carolina; (2) Build a public transit system that supports your economic development initiatives—Austin, Texas; (3) Local food is economic development—state of North Carolina; (4) In our

Invite the thought leaders of Columbus and surrounding cities to present dynamic, exciting and daring ideas.

schools, every 10-year old should be coding (‘intelligent communities’).”

Sharp’s idea: “A symposium, similar to ED411, focusing on strategies to manage housing, transportation and local food as elements of smart regional growth. To promote this symposium as a cultural shift mechanism, I would invite the thought leaders of Columbus and surrounding cities to present dynamic, exciting and daring ideas.”

January 2020/Future 50

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12/6/19 4:23 PM

Megan Shroy Founder and president Approach Marketing

About: Megan Shroy started her career in Chicago at global public relations agency Golin through its internship program, where she was selected from a pool of 500 people and later offered a job on the agency’s largest account, McDonald’s. She founded Approach Marketing, a public relations and marketing agency with about 20 employees, in 2010. It has a

virtual model where its public relations consultants, who are independent contractors, are able to determine how, when and where they work and are paired with clients who have similar schedules. Shroy and her team support nonprofits through volunteerism, fundraisers, sponsorships and donations of services. Approach has offered help to Make-A-Wish Foundation, Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana to fulfill the wish of a boy from Ohio to be a construction worker for a day. Outside of work: Shroy is a mentor for Ruling our Experiences (ROX) and member of NAWBO, Women

for Economic Leadership and Development, and the Communication and Business Leadership group at Wittenberg University. Shroy has also donated nearly $20,000 to support granting local wishes through the Make-A-Wish Women Inspiring Strength and Hope initiative. What does Columbus need to thrive? “It is critical to modernize our transportation system. Additionally, it’s important that we make sure Columbus is growing in prosperity for everyone, not just select areas. It will be important to have development improve neglected parts of Columbus. We also need to

Bring together business leaders from all kinds of organizations to meet with local students who may not have opportunities to see different career paths. 52

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keep up investments in affordable housing, job training and education.”

Shroy’s idea: “I’d love to bring together business leaders from all kinds of organizations to meet with local students who may not have opportunities to see different career paths. Additionally, there are so many nonprofits that could benefit from professional services counsel they may not otherwise be able to afford. We could host a nonprofit ‘day of learning,’ where representatives from organizations could come and attend sessions on a variety of topics.”

Future 50/January 2020

12/6/19 4:24 PM

Timothy Wolf Starr Managing partner, Atlas Partners

From the New Americans to the sixth-generation Columbus residents, everyone has a story, a goal and something to contribute. including Independents’ Day, the Food Truck Festival and the Festival For Good and consulted on projects ranging from Highball and Comfest to Craftin’ Outlaws. What does Columbus need to thrive? “We must innovate, in everything we do, at a faster and more sustainable pace in order to actualize the forward momentum we have created. Over the past 10 years, we have grown many businesses, brought in new venture platforms and built a national reputation as an oasis of growth and technological excellence.”

About: Timothy Wolf Starr has spent lots of time building blue-collar businesses. Capitalizing on this wealth of experience in 2009, Starr created the Small Business Beanstalk, which became the nation’s largest shop local

network with more than 500 businesses and 100,000 participants. It has since been rebranded to Connects Columbus in collaboration with CD102. Now, through Atlas Partners, Wolf has helped lead programs that have brought investment, businesses and new leaders to the region. Atlas Partners has hosted events including Venture Out, held at Drive Capital with Stonewall Columbus’ LEAP program, Loud Capital and NCT. This event has shaped Columbus

into a hub for venture support in the LGBTQ+ community. Wolf has also worked with Smart Columbus, #SavedTheCrew, Experience Columbus and many others on the Radical Collaboration event series. Outside of work: Wolf has served on dozens of local and regional boards including the Create Columbus Commission, Community Shares and the University District Business Association. He also co-produced festivals

Starr’s idea: “From the New Americans to the sixth-generation Columbus residents, everyone has a story, a goal and something to contribute. Each of the 50 could talk to one person they do not know each week and ask them to fill out a survey as a starting point to connect and record the different cultures, ideas and strategies of our community. With a 50 percent success rate we would create 1, 000 connections which would bring our city together by creating a dialogue to share externally.”

January 2020/Future 50

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12/6/19 4:24 PM

Molly Rampe Thomas Founder and CEO, Choice Network

It would be powerful to host focus groups with people of color in our community to get the (Future 50 annual project) idea from them. an adoptive and biological mom to three children with her husband. What does Columbus need to thrive? “Columbus needs to recognize that we have a real issue with racism in our community. While we are enjoying low unemployment rates, our poverty rate is at 16 percent and we are No. 1 in the state for eviction filings. We have one of the highest infant mortality rates and black babies are dying at 2.5 times the rate of white babies. Studies show Columbus is still recognized as one of the most segregated cities in the nation.”

About: Molly Rampe Thomas is the founder of Choice Network, which is focused on securing open adoptions that are chosen by the biological parent in an environment of love and trust. The belief


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of the agency is that open adoptions help children maintain their culture and heritage, give them a sense of normalcy and provide honesty and inclusion for the child. Choice Network also specializes in LGBTQ adoption and is dedicated to anti-oppression work, and it identifies itself as a pro-choice adoption agency. Thomas has received numerous awards including Abortion Care Network’s Person of the Year Award and most recently

the National Association of Social Worker’s Lifetime Achievement Award for her agency and work. Prior to founding Choice Network, Thomas ran all core programs for the YWCA, including the YWCA Family Center. She holds a master’s in social work from Ohio State University. Outside of work: Thomas also owns a company called Gia’s Network, named after her daughter. She is both

Thomas’ idea: “I think it would be powerful to host focus groups with people of color in our community to get the idea from them. For too long we have created programs and solutions that unintentionally and intentionally support privilege. We have not turned to the people we are trying to help to understand what they need. I want to start there. Let’s hear from those hurting most and build something quantifiable, lasting and inclusively beautiful.”

Future 50/January 2020

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Heather Whaling President and founder Geben Communication

About: Heather Whaling founded her public relations firm 10 years ago to help emerging brands and forwardthinking companies excel in an increasingly social world. She merged the practice of social media and public relations and became a soughtafter speaker on innovative communications strategies and workplace policies. Over the past several years,

Whaling grew tired of waiting for the government to catch up to the workplace policies needed in the country, so she launched “Rewrite the Rules,” a paid leave advocacy campaign that encouraged business owners of all sizes to submit their own paid leave policies into a database. By publicly sharing the database, Whaling encouraged other businesses to model their own policies off of them. Thanks to Whaling’s early interest in emerging technology, Geben has had the opportunity to work with technology clients from coast to coast, including leading the communication strategy when Cision and Vocus, the two

largest vendors to the public relations space, merged. Outside of work: Whaling has been active with the Women’s Fund of Central Ohio since 2011 and was appointed to the Columbus Women’s Commission in 2018. She has also supported Roosevelt Coffeehouse, Gladden Community House and the Human Service Chamber of Franklin County. What does Columbus need to thrive? “We need to make a concerted effort to ensure growth is working for everyone. The benefits of this growth will be more easily accessible by certain parts of the population; however, inten-

If we can do more to create economic self-sufficiency for women, Columbus will be exponentially stronger.

tionality, in everything from convening to policy-making, will ensure the success benefits the community as a whole, not just a select group of individuals.”

Whaling’s idea: “I strongly believe if we can do more to create economic self-sufficiency for women, Columbus will be exponentially stronger. Other communities have something like a Gender Index to rate companies. Building something like this for Columbus would compel companies to do more to support women.”

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About: Following graduate school, Stephen White, a first-generation college student, was recruited by U.S. Sen. Rob Portman to develop public-private partnerships for Columbus, including partnerships that helped to win the Smart Cities Challenge in 2016 and create the Reeb Avenue Center’s Hub of Hope. He also created a funding framework to combat the opioid crisis in Columbus, an accomplishment White says he is most proud of. White has landed at COSI, where he focuses on building the city’s STEM sector. He led the COSI Science Festival, an event that formed partnerships to help address some of the region’s difficulties, including poverty, workforce and economic development. White is a recipient of the Young Alumni Achievement Award by Ohio State University John Glenn College of Public Affairs. Outside of work: Columbus Metropolitan Club Board of Trustees, Ohio State Bar Association, Columbus Bar Association, Knights of Columbus Leadership Council, the State of Ohio STEM Committee and many more. What does Columbus need to thrive? “We must address income disparity, existing high poverty levels, and the lack of a skilled workforce to fill the jobs of the future. We must align education to in-demand careers at the collegiate, community college, career technical, nano-degree or certification


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We must address income disparity, existing high poverty levels, and the lack of a skilled workforce to fill the jobs of the future.

Stephen White Vice president of external affairs, strategic initiatives and business development; in-house counsel, COSI

program levels. We must prepare the pipeline of talent to create a path for the jobs of the future.”

White’s idea: “Future 50 can create a yearlong initiative called “CBUS Mentors: A ColumbUS Social Network of Opportunity” that will rely on public, private and nonprofit engagement. Each Future 50 class member will identify in-demand open jobs in their respective sphere of influence, find multiple education pathways to obtain these jobs and partner with an organization in an economically disadvantaged community, which can provide a mentee for the Future 50 to transform around this career.”

Future 50/January 2020

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Congratulations Stephen White, Esq.

to COSI Vice President of External Affairs, Strategic Initiatives and Business Development Inaugural Future 50 Class We’re proud to have Stephen recognized as a rising trailblazer. His innovative leadership for the COSI Science Festival is a critical component to its success and the opportunity to engage, inspire and transform thousands.

January 2020/Future 50

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Ryan Wilkins Senior director of communications and facilities, Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Ohio; owner and cofounder, Olentangy River Brewing Co.

About: Ryan Wilkins has been a self-identified advocate for Columbus for nearly his entire life. He is just as proud of having been a Young Life volunteer in college as

he is of his work at Ronald McDonald House for the past 11 ½ years, including being responsible for bringing the Ronald McDonald Care Mobile program to Columbus, creating and managing the RMHC Vehicle Donation Program for the entire nation and helping to build the largest Ronald McDonald House in the entire world. Wilkins also is proud of the craft brewery he created and opened in November 2018 in

Lewis Center with his wife, Sarah Wilkins, and friends Scott and Bethany Schweitzer. Majority ownership of Olentangy River Brewing Co. is by women. The versatile, creative Wilkins also has recorded and released five albums of original music, selling thousands of CDs and receiving critical acclaim. Outside of work: Wilkins is the music director at Central City Church.

Our community leadership has positioned us well to use our strengths. We need to engage our creative spirit and work ethic to address challenges. 58

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What does Columbus need to thrive? “Our city is poised to be a world leader in the next three decades. Our community leadership has positioned us well to use our strengths. We need to engage our creative spirit and work ethic to address challenges. The business community will need to partner with nonprofit leadership to build seamless streams of support. And we will need to continue to define our identity, building the brand of Columbus for the rest of the world to see. I am proud to be part of what we are going to press forward with into the next chapter of our amazing city.”

Future 50/January 2020

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Wilkins’ idea: “We could develop a strategy to eliminate the scourge that opioids are on our community. Our nonprofit organizations know how to serve this population. And our intellectual institutions and corporations have the talent to come up with strategies that will work. With the leadership of the first Future 50 class, we can come up with lasting tools that can help people who struggle with addiction.” January 2020/Future 50

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Kierra Williams Head of talent management and organizational development, Shearer’s Foods

About: Kierra Williams has more than 15 years of experience in the public and private sectors and has developed a passion for growing talent. Whether through executive coaching, informal mentoring or creating and implementing formal programs and initiatives, she finds energy in helping to elicit the “amazing gene” that she believes exists in every individual. At

Shearer’s she’s responsible for leadership development, performance management, organizational design and culture and engagement. Williams has had the privilege throughout her career of advising leaders at all levels on how to diversify their talent pool to build great teams while also creating inclusive environments and solutions that empower everyone to grow. With experience ranging from creating leadership development content for warehouse associates to working with C-Suite executives on cultural framework campaigns, Williams tailors content to fit any client group

to help integrate solutions and attain meaningful results. Outside of work: Williams is a foster youth advocate and lobbyist and serves as a special advisory board member for Ohio Youth Advisory. She is founder and president of the Kindred Canvas Foundation, a nonprofit centered around the arts and civic engagement that sponsors an annual scholarship for students pursuing post-secondary art education. What does Columbus need to thrive? “Columbus needs more think-tank incubators that are inclusive of all communities and socioeconomic

A citywide art installation where all communities provide a piece to the puzzle. 60

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statuses, bringing people together to create actual solutions in their communities.”

Williams’ idea: “A citywide art installation where all communities provide a piece to the puzzle with something unique to their community that they want encapsulated in the installation. A component of what enables that is city-wide art workshops open to everyone where they are provided guidance and direction and can contribute.”

Future 50/January 2020

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Provide more startup resources, education and even facility space to underserved areas. Yerkes has a bachelor of science degree in business management from Franklin University. Outside of work: In addition to his volunteer work at Cultivate, Yerkes renovates historic commercial buildings. So far, he has completed five. He’s lived in Grove City for 26 years and enjoys being a part of the community. He and his wife have operated businesses in Grove City and have helped to start a small community church. What does Columbus need to thrive? “Although Columbus has a booming startup space scene, Columbus needs to better meet demand for a variety of workspaces in all areas of the region to allow entrepreneurs to work close to where they live.”

Matthew Yerkes Executive director, Cultivate

About: Matthew Yerkes believes that for most people, entrepreneurship is the best opportunity available to

change the trajectory of one’s life. That has been his personal experience as someone who founded a software-as-aservice company called Quick Square Consulting in 2001 and then sold it in 2015. That is why Yerkes’ main gig now is to be a volunteer. He isn’t compensated for his work at Cultivate, which adds up to about 1,000 hours per year. The Grove City

nonprofit Yerkes founded provides educational and advising support to small and emerging businesses. It hosts 20, but helps many more. Yerkes meets with about 100 entrepreneurs per year. And Cultivate is growing. In 2019, it received a grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture that enabled it to expand to London to serve entrepreneurs in Madison County.

Yerkes’ idea: “There are underserved groups of entrepreneurs in the region, in particular areas of Columbus that don’t present a financially lucrative business model for the coworking and business meeting space companies that often are a good place for entrepreneurs to launch. We need to provide more startup resources, education and even facility space to underserved areas.”

January 2020/Future 50

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Zachary Woodruff Director of development and public service, City of Whitehall

About: Zach Woodruff has provided 18 years of public service in Central Ohio, and

now leads development and public service efforts for Whitehall. The city has added nearly 2,500 new jobs since 2012, leading to an increase of $5.7 million in revenue. Woodruff’s team, under the guidance of Mayor Kim Maggard, also has aided in the creation of hundreds of new affordable housing units in the city. The Whitehall native holds a bach-

elor of arts degree from Ohio State University and resides in Pickerington with his family. Outside of work: Board member for Pride of Whitehall, Ground Level Solutions, Whitehall Community Improvement Corp. and the Franklin County Transportation Improvement District. Past board member for the

Develop strategies and funding solutions to increase the amount of workforce and other affordable housing options in areas outside of the city of Columbus. 62

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Mid-Ohio Development Exchange. What does Columbus need to thrive? “The Columbus region must increase the integration of transit and affordable housing into all future developments. Linking transportation to current and expanding job hubs can open doors and create additional employment opportunities for individuals. In addition, there needs to be an emphasis on providing additional access to quality and affordable child care and health care.”

Future 50/January 2020

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The The City of Whitehall

Congratulates ZACH


Woodruff’s idea: “I think the group could focus on multiple items over the year. One could be to develop strategies and funding solutions to increase the amount of workforce and other affordable housing options in areas outside of the city of Columbus. This could include partnering with Central Ohio Community Improvement Corp., which works to redevelop blighted properties, and Franklin County to leverage funding.”

City of Whitehall Director of Development and Public Service Columbus CEO’s inaugural group of Future 50 leaders January 2020/Future 50

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Mindy Yocum Owner, Yocum Law Office, and founder, JusticeMobile

Establish a community of tiny homes with on-site services to help homeless individuals. barriers to prosperity and help people advance up the economic ladder. What does Columbus need to thrive? “As a community, I believe we do a great job of supporting our neighbors, encouraging growth and challenging outdated beliefs. We are a city of action—and when we see issues or problems, we look for solutions. Programs that support entrepreneurship and social impact are incredibly important. Additionally, I think it is essential for government agencies, nonprofits and private companies to work together. Too often, we duplicate the efforts of other community members instead of partnering with our colleagues or competitors to improve everyone’s social impact.”

About: Former Teleperformance supervisor and Shamrock Golf Club manager Mindy Yocum graduated from law school in 2015 and started a law firm with the goal to help people who lacked access to legal advice or


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representation. Sliding scales were not enough to help as many people as she wanted to help, however. So she joined the SEA Change social enterprise accelerator and adopted a model employing partnerships with organizations including Hot Chicken Takeover, Action for Children, Mount Carmel Outreach, Star House and The Refuge. Since the beginning of 2018, she has assisted more than 1,500 people who lacked access to legal help. Yocum holds a bachelor’s degree in sociology

from Ohio State University and a juris doctor from Capital University School of Law. Outside work: In 2019, Yocum founded JusticeMobile, a nonprofit mobile legal clinic. The clinic began rolling in July 2019 to help people with immediate legal needs. Long-term, Yocum would like to provide video court access in rural areas; streamline filing processes for individuals in county courts; and partner with local businesses to remove legal

Yocum’s idea: “Establish a community of tiny homes with on-site services to help homeless individuals; advocate for policy that allows evictions to be sealed; create a social enterprise incubator encouraging job development and collaboration; give high school students information about legal rights, from what do I do if I am pulled over to what if my landlord won’t fix my air conditioning.”

Future 50/January 2020

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12/3/19 4:43 PM

Congratulations, Ali Haque! Future 50 Class of 2020 Honoree We celebrate the service of leaders who champion important initiatives supporting the central Ohio community. We look forward to the valuable contributions from the Future 50 Class of 2020.

Bricker & Eckler LLP

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