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Akron, Ohio

Newly-Established Bounce Board Begins Search for CEO

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City of Akron hires first Innovation and Entrepreneurship Advocate as a liaison to Bounce and the startup community in Akron

City of Akron Press Release
From the desk of Ellen Lander Nischt, Press Secretary
Published: 12-06-2017

Akron, Ohio, December 6, 2017Mayor Dan Horrigan has announced the appointment of five professional leaders to the board of directors of Bounce, Akron’s Innovation Hub. Bounce is a new nonprofit organization created to support innovation, entrepreneurship and investment in Akron’s startup and growing business community. The board held its first organizational meeting Nov. 29 and elected Deborah Hoover, president and CEO of Burton D. Morgan Foundation, as chair.

The directors contribute diverse backgrounds and expertise to the board of directors—representing the entrepreneurship, corporate and philanthropic communities and bringing valuable experience in startup creation and innovation hub management and development. The following five individuals were appointed to the Bounce board:

Deborah Hoover, president and CEO, Burton D. Morgan Foundation, chair

Steve Charles, vice president, product development, Bridgestone Americas, Inc.

Phillip Brennan, CEO, Echogen Power Systems

David Zipper, fellow, German Marshall Fund

Ken Babby, owner, Akron RubberDucks

The first major task of the board will be the search for Bounce’s president and CEO.

“We are excited to embark on a thoughtful, independent search for a dynamic CEO to drive Bounce’s success by catalyzing startup-driven growth and boosting corporate innovation efforts in Akron,” said Deborah Hoover. “We look forward to initiating this competitive and critically important search in the coming weeks.”

Located in the current space of the Akron Global Business Accelerator, 526 S. Main St., Bounce, is the city’s first open innovation hub. Bounce will be absorbing, reinventing, and enhancing the existing activities of the Akron Global Business Accelerator and Bit Factory. Featuring co-working space, startup offices, mentorship, and a mix of public and private events, Bounce will serve as the city’s front door for those who are, will be, or want to be advancing innovation.

To complement the services and programming at Bounce, Heather Roszczyk has been hired as the City’s first Innovation and Entrepreneurship Advocate. Heather joins the City after serving as the Akron Entrepreneurship Fellow with the Fund for Our Economic Future since July 2016.

As the City’s Innovation and Entrepreneurship Advocate, Heather will serve as the liaison between Bounce and the City and lead the City’s efforts to create a stronger, more successful ecosystem for entrepreneurship across all segments of the community.

“Bounce is a key aspect of my economic development vision,” Mayor Horrigan said. “It embraces a renewed emphasis on supporting local businesses and talent by providing abundant pathways to innovate and grow, empowering both startups and established Akron companies to meet the needs and opportunities of the modern, digital economy.”

 “Heather will be invaluable in this endeavor. She will be my eyes and ears in the startup community, advising me and my team on best practices for catalyzing innovation in the ever-changing global market, and ensuring that our entrepreneurs get what they need from City Hall.”

To learn more, follow Bounce on Twitter @bouncehub or Facebook or contact Bounce’s program director, Courtney Gras, at 216-543-6066.

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For further information, contact:
Ellen Lander Nischt
Press Secretary / Assistant Director of Law
166 South High Street
Suite 200
Phone: 3303752325
E-mail: [email protected]

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