ScaleUp Partners is comprised of a team of experienced leaders who are visionary practitioners across a broad spectrum of community economic influence and social impact strategies.


Economic Development

From influencing the movement of the field of tech-based economic development, through SSTI and individual organizations and regional collaborations, to raising funds and generating real and sustain impact in target communities, ScaleUp Partners is making the first-ever significant impact on the economic development field with a vision and strategy of Inclusive Competitiveness developed and led by African American leadership.

Contact us to see our portfolio of direct and indirect impact across various regions and states.

Education Impact

The Ohio Board of Regents. The Ohio University. The HBCU/MEI Council of the Oak Ridge Associated Universities. The Mississippi Center for Education Innovation. What do these and other education-focused leaders and pipeline builders have in common? They have all adopted the vision and strategies of Inclusive Competitiveness through a relationship with ScaleUp Partners. Contact us to see a full version of the Inclusive Competitiveness report commissioned by the Ohio Board of Regents. That report is currently codified and ready for a public announcement soon by Ohio Governor John Kasich. The Ohio Board of Regents's Subcommittee on Inclusive Competitiveness Report was authored and edited by principals of ScaleUp Partners.


Ask the creative geniuses at Pear'd and Built Oregon what they think of ScaleUp Partners' being on their board of advisors. Or check out the awesome video on the successful Kickstarter campaign launched by Built Oregon, which reached its goal of $20K in just four days! These are just two of many startup founders we have advised and/or mentored.

Among many productions and gatherings, including the nation's first-ever Minority Biomedical Entrepreneurship Conference, we produced the nation's first-ever Gathering of Angels two-day summit that brought together 13 vetted minority entrepreneurs with active seed stage investors. In partnership with Rutgers Business School's Center for Urban Entrepreneurship & Economic Development (CUEED), we produced a high-impact program that connected entrepreneurs and investors who produced sustained winning outcomes such as Platform.

Venture Capital

Advancing economic inclusion and competitiveness necessarily means investing in the innovator ... the entrepreneur. An important part of the investment portfolio are scalable enterprises (i.e. so-called "gazelles" that produce a disproportionate amount of job growth).

ScaleUp Partners has helped develop and implement strategies to enable communities to improve economic health through early stage investments – adding more than $40 million of early-stage risk capital to the Cincinnati regional economy. This fund-of-funds approach resulted in investments to several seed and early-stage regional and national venture capital funds, creating a national network of more than $250 million of capital.

Venture capital fosters entrepreneurial innovation and fuels higher-growth enterprise development, while growing jobs and regional economic competitiveness. When more of a region's entrepreneurial talent are included in a process of producing scalable enterprises, the region's benefits from overall economic health. Venture capital investing plays a significant role in the economic health of regions and the nation. According to the 2011 Venture Impact study, produced by IHS Global Insight, venture capital activity has a significant impact on the U.S economy:

  • Venture capital is a catalyst for job creation, innovation, technology advancement, international competitiveness

  • Venture-backed companies accounted for 11.87 million jobs and over $3.1 trillion in revenue in the United States

  • Represents 21% of GDP and 11% of private sector employment


With more than 18 years of award-winning media experience and strong ties and relationships across the national media landscape, ScaleUp Partners is steeped in the knowledge of media relations and strategy, digital media innovation, public relations, branding and storytelling impact. Contact us to learn more about how we are connected to major media platforms such as the New York Times, Washington Post, CNN, NPR and others. Our influence and impact can be seen in Entrepreneur, Black Enterprise, Venture Capital, Governing Institute and Oregon Business magazines to name a few. Our writing (and writing about us) has appeared in numerous national media over a sustained period of time. We continue to nurture our media relationships and cultivate our influence across the media landscape today.

Initiative for a Competitive Inner City (ICIC) - Ask the Expert: Why Inclusion Matters for Economic Competitiveness

Ideastream - WVIZ/PBS: The Sound of Ideas - Minorities Missing in Tech Fields

Northeast Ohio needs more knowledge-based jobs for economic stability: The Cleveland Federal Reserve chief says the region is regaining lost manufacturing jobs, but needs to be more like Pittsburgh. Interview with Fed Chief and ScaleUp Partners.

Technology-Based Economic Development - An examination of the development of Cincinnati’s tech-based economic development strategy and evaluates its prospects for success

Inclusive Clusters – Groundbreaking article explores the ways in which low-income and minority populations can more effectively be connected to regional clusters

High On Ohio – Discussion of Ohio’s Innovation Economy and Inclusive Competitiveness (See video)

Washington Post: Black America Needs Angels, Not Superman

Governing Institute: Struggling Cities and the Promise of Inclusive Competitiveness

Contact us for more links to communications-related impact of ScaleUp Partners. 

Training & Mentoring

When New U started out with an idea and funding from the Ford Foundation to create an entrepreneurial training ground for minority journalists to stimulate a growth of minority-owned media enterprises, the impact of ScaleUp Partners helped ensure a successful start with top notch presenters at the training boot camps, such as executive leadership from Tech Stars and Tech Coast Angels. Today, New U is still going strong and ready for Phase 2 funding (Ready-2-Scale!). New U entrepreneurs received the benefit of direct mentoring, as did all of the entrepreneurs invited to present at a Gathering of Angels, the first-ever platform for educating and connecting minority entrepreneurs and angel investors.

Policy Influence

From Oregon to Ohio to Mississippi, ScaleUp Partners have had strong and significant influence at the highest levels of policymaking in both the public and private sectors. Contact us to learn more about the specific levels of impact and outcomes. Across the national landscape, ScaleUp Partners is quickly becoming known due to the adoption rate of Inclusive Competitiveness.

The Council on Foundations recently featured a webinar in which Inclusive Competitiveness was the focus. The response was immediate. Check it out.

Council on Foundations : Blurred Lines Innovations in Philanthropy Webinar Series: August 7, 2014 Blurred Lines and New Approaches to Working with Businesses, Nonprofits and Government

See video of Webinar (skip to 44:00 for ScaleUp presentation).


From raising small funds through sponsorship to raising tens of millions, ScaleUp Partners has direct experience and leadership. Contact us to learn more about specific fundraising activities and successes.

Event Production

Here's a few of the productions ScaleUp Partners have directly produced and/or consulted on in the production phase:

  • Gathering of Black Leadership, University of Portland
  • Gathering of Angels, Rutgers Business School
  • Minority Biomedical Entrepreneurship Conference, Cleveland, Ohio
  • New U Entrepreneurship Minority Media Training Boot Camp (Denver, CO & San Diego, CA)
  • Finding Funds for Your Startup: Philadelphia, PA
  • Inclusive Competitiveness Workshop: Pittsburgh, PA
  • HBCU Innovation Summit: Stanford University
  • SBIR/STTR Summit: Portland OR
  • Puget Sound Region Economic Solutions Summit: Tacoma, WA
  • Saving America's Black Boys Solutions Summit: Austin, TX (SXSWedu)
  • STEM Education and Economic Solutions Summit: Washington DC

ScaleUp raises awareness of the cost of disconnected communities and the benefits of connecting underrepresented populations to regional ecosystems. We demonstrate the power inherent in collaboration among leaders and stakeholders across Communities of Influence, and present a framework for channeling that power to develop greater productivity to the region produced by underrepresented populations.