02 Oct

Marketplace Recap in the Cincinnati Business Courier

With a headline proclaiming “a surprisingly big turnout from donors,” the Business Courier’s Chris Wetterich posted a quote-filled overview of the Transform Cincinnati Marketplace event. Most significantly, Wetterich reports that Transform Cincinnati Founder Dick Rosenthal is confident that at least some of the projects presented will be funded:

“There will be ongoing conversations and discussions between the funders and the originators of the projects. They’re going to want to meet. They’re going to want to explore more deeply how these projects will roll out,” Rosenthal said.

Read the full story at the Business Courier.

01 Oct

Transform Cincinnati Successfully Stages Inaugural Marketplace Event

Six Finalists Present Bold, Game-Changing Ideas to Nearly 100 Potential Funders

Cincinnati, Ohio – October 1, 2015 Transform Cincinnati, a new initiative to connect bold ideas to improve Greater Cincinnati with people who have the potential to fund such ideas in our region, successfully staged its first-ever Transform Cincinnati Marketplace program September 30. The initiative was founded by well-known philanthropist and community leader Richard Rosenthal.

The Marketplace event was a chance for the six finalists to pitch their ideas to nearly 100 potential funders gathered at the People’s Liberty offices in Over-the-Rhine. The prospective funders also received information about 22 semi-finalists’ concepts ranging from marketing the arts to job development, poverty alleviation, food security and educational programming among others. The program was hosted by Mercantile Library CEO John Faherty.

“Transform Cincinnati has significantly exceeded our expectations,” said Rosenthal. “From the number of applications with big, bold ideas, to the outpouring of potential funders interested in learning about these ideas in one place, at one time, we could not have asked for more.”

“In the coming weeks, we will be working with potential funders and with finalists and semi-finalists to help facilitate connections with the goal of getting multiple programs funded,” Rosenthal added.

Transform Cincinnati connects individuals who have the financial capacity and motivation to effect dramatic change with not-for-profit and for-profit entities whose ideas can have a lasting effect on the quality of life in Greater Cincinnati. Transform Cincinnati itself does not provide funding, but creates a marketplace where potential investors and bold ideas from $1 million to $10 million can be matched.

Transform Cincinnati received more than 150 applications earlier this summer, which were reviewed to identify the 29 applications best fitting the organization’s criteria. The Transform Cincinnati review panel, comprised of a cross section of community leaders representing civic, not-for-profit, business and government organizations, then carefully reviewed the proposals and voted to advance six finalists.

About the Finalists

Six finalist organizations presented their ideas to funders and answered questions in a five-minute Q&A round. After presentations were concluded, finalists met with potential funders interested in learning more about their projects.

Finalists for the first Transform Cincinnati Marketplace, and their submitting organizations are:

  • Activate Ziegler Park!: The plan re-imagines Ziegler Park on Sycamore Street in Over-the-Rhine (OTR) as a true community recreational resource. By leveraging government and private funding, the existing park will be expanded and renovated into five acres of community civic space, including neighborhood green space, a new deep-water swimming pool, multi-use recreational field, children’s playground, public parking and more. The project is expected to spark improved housing, crime reduction, and retail/business development in the neighborhood. Applicant: Cincinnati Center City Development Corp (3CDC)
  • Cincinnati Neighborhood Equity Fund: Creates a Cincinnati Neighborhood Equity Fund of “patient capital” to accelerate jobs and redevelopment of urban communities outside of Over-the-Rhine, starting in Walnut Hills and then spreading to other neighborhoods. Walnut Hills has already seen initial redevelopment and it is believed new equity can jump-start high-risk neighborhood development and revitalization, much like it has in OTR. CDF will support the fund by advising on financing, investing its own capital and leveraging other funding sources to complement this investment. This project could involve philanthropy and loans or a combination of both. Applicant: Cincinnati Development Fund (CDF)
  • Venture Building Studio and OPA! Labs: Establishes a consumer health care venture studio (OPA! Labs) – a model already tried in other cities – dedicated to attracting the best health innovators and talent to the region to incubate, nurture and then commercialize ideas. The program builds on the region’s existing health care strength to further establish it as a national magnet for health care innovation and job creation. Applicant: Cintrifuse, in collaboration with The Health Collaborative
  • End Youth Homelessness in Cincinnati by 2020: Homelessness among youth frequently ends in suicide, substance abuse and other negative consequences. This project envisions no homeless youth in Cincinnati. The plan develops a multipurpose center near Lighthouse headquarters in Mt. Auburn offering housing and services appropriate to youths’ needs while they work through skill building and a support plan to transition to independent adulthood. It includes an emergency homeless youth shelter, new units of permanent supportive housing, and a range of services that focus on getting youth into housing and off the streets. Applicant: Lighthouse Youth Services
  • Precision Cancer Care: Revolutionizing Cancer Outcomes in Cincinnati: The project leverages breakthrough discoveries in genomics, drug discovery, informatics and biological model systems and brings them directly to patient care – which will help rank Cincinnati among national leaders in new and personalized advances in cancer care. It could catapult designation as a Center of Excellence by the National Cancer Institute, which brings jobs, prestige and patient care benefits. Breakthrough scientific discoveries made through the project are expected to be shared globally. Applicant: UC Health/UC Cancer Institute
  • A Down Payment on the Preschool Promise: This initiative creates the strategic foundation for the educational future of children through Cincinnati Preschool Promise (CPP). While still in development, CPP hopes to ensure every three- and four-year-old child in the region has access to two years of high-quality, affordable preschool regardless of income – something no other city has done. This project seeks to lay the groundwork, including credentialing of quality ratings for more preschool providers, so CPP can ramp-up its implementation immediately if voters approve a ballot initiative in November 2016. This is a potential game-changer for Cincinnati, a city in which more than 50 percent of children are born into families below the poverty level. Applicant: 4C for Children

Information about all of the finalist and semi-finalist programs also can be found at transformcincinnati.org/finalists. It is expected the Transform Cincinnati Marketplace program will be held again in 2016.

About Transform Cincinnati
Transform Cincinnati connects individuals who have the financial capacity and motivation to effect dramatic change with initiatives that will have a lasting impact on the quality of life in Cincinnati and the eight surrounding counties. Learn more at TransformCincinnati.org.

23 Sep

Cincinnati Edition Revisited

Dick Rosenthal and Susan Ingmire were featured on the September 23 episode of WVXU’s Cincinnati Edition.  In this interview, host Mark Heyne reviews the Transform Cincinnati model before moving on to a discussion of what differentiates the current generation of philanthropists from their predecessors and a review of the six finalists who will presenting at the September 30 Transform Cincinnati Marketplace.

03 Sep

Transform Cincinnati featured in Soapbox Media

Soapbox Media‘s Caitlin Koenig published a fine overview of Transform Cincinnati entitled “Transform Cincinnati announces six finalists, puts them in front of potential funders” on September 1. In addition to listing the six finalists, Koenig’s article provides an excellent overview of founder Dick Rosenthal’s vision for Transform Cincinnati.

Speaking about the benefits already produced by the project, Rosenthal is quoted as saying:

‘We’ve heard from organizations that the process has already helped them to seek new collaborations and to become more focused on how to bring their ideas to life. We’ve heard from investors who never before thought of themselves as having the wherewithal to invest in bigger ideas and now recognize they can do so.’

Read the full article online.

27 Aug

Cincinnati Enquirer: Transform Finalists Aiming Big

The Enquirer’s Amber Hunt published “The ideas are in. Now, they just need money” in today’s Business section of the Cincinnati Enquirer. This article comes out just as Transform Cincinnati announced the six finalists for 2015.

The finalists will present their ideas at a private event on September 30, in a forum Hunt noted “would likely seem familiar to fans of the TV show ‘Shark Tank.'” While the comparison is understandable, Transform Cincinnati is aiming for a more congenial, less confrontational atmosphere.

Transform Cincinnati Founder Dick Rosenthal is feeling positive about the process: “‘We have had a number of people write to us to say thank you for making us think really big,’” Rosenthal said. “’They say that they’ve gone outside of their comfort zones with huge ideas.’”

Read the full article online.

27 Aug

Transform Cincinnati Announces Six Finalists to Advance to September Marketplace

Finalists to Present Bold, Game-Changing Ideas to Potential Investors;  Investors May Register to Participate Through September 28

Cincinnati, OH – August 27, 2015 Transform Cincinnati, a new initiative to connect bold ideas to improve Greater Cincinnati with people who have the potential to make significant investments in our region, has announced the six finalists selected to present their ideas at the Transform Cincinnati Marketplace on September 30.

Transform Cincinnati connects individuals who have the financial capacity and motivation to effect dramatic change with not-for-profit and for-profit entities whose ideas can have a lasting impact on the quality of life in Greater Cincinnati. Transform Cincinnati itself does not provide funding, but is creating a marketplace where potential investors and bold ideas from $1 million to $10 million can be matched.

Transform Cincinnati received more than 150 applications earlier this summer, which were reviewed to identify the 29 applications best fitting the organization’s criteria. The Transform Cincinnati review panel, comprised of a cross section of community leaders representing civic, not-for-profit, business and government organizations, then carefully reviewed the proposals and voted to advance six finalists.

“Our goal is to elevate ideas that can effect change our community to investors with the ability to push them forward,” said Transform Cincinnati founder Dick Rosenthal. “Through the diligent effort of our community review panel, we are advancing six proposals that have the potential to transform the vitality of our community.”

Finalists for the first Transform Cincinnati Marketplace and their submitting organizations are:

  • Activate Ziegler Park!: The plan re-imagines Ziegler Park on Sycamore Street in Over-the-Rhine (OTR) as a true community recreational resource. By leveraging government and private funding, the existing park will be expanded and renovated into five acres of community civic space, including neighborhood green space, a new deep-water swimming pool, multi-use recreational field, children’s playground, public parking and more. Applicant: Cincinnati Center City Development Corp (3CDC)
  • Cincinnati Neighborhood Equity Fund: Creates a Cincinnati Neighborhood Equity Fund of “patient capital” to accelerate jobs and redevelopment of urban communities outside of Over-the-Rhine, starting in Walnut Hills. Walnut Hills has already seen initial redevelopment and it is believed new equity can jump-start high-risk neighborhood development and revitalization, much like it has in OTR. CDF will support the fund by advising on financing, investing its own capital and leveraging other funding sources to complement this investment. This project could involve philanthropy and loans or a combination of both. Applicant:Cincinnati Development Fund (CDF)
  • Venture Building Studio and OPA! Labs: Establishes a consumer health care venture studio (OPA! Labs) – a model already tried in other cities – dedicated to attracting the best health innovators and talent to the region to incubate, nurture and then commercialize ideas. The program builds on the region’s existing health care strength to further establish it as a national magnet for health care innovation. Applicant: Cintrifuse, in collaboration with The Health Collaborative
  • End Youth Homelessness in Cincinnati by 2020: Homelessness among youth frequently ends in suicide, substance abuse and other negative consequences. This project envisions no homeless youth in Cincinnati. The plan develops a Walnut Hills multipurpose center offering housing and services appropriate to youths’ needs while they work through skill-building and a support plan to transition to independent adulthood. It includes an emergency homeless youth shelter, new units of permanent supportive housing, and a range of services that focus on getting youth into housing and off the streets. Applicant: Lighthouse Youth Services
  • Precision Cancer Care: Revolutionizing Cancer Outcomes in Cincinnati: The project leverages breakthrough discoveries in genomics, drug discovery, informatics and biological model systems and brings them directly to patient care – which will help rank Cincinnati among national leaders in new and personalized advances in cancer care. Breakthrough scientific discoveries made through the project are expected to be shared globally. Applicant: UC Health/UC Cancer Institute
  • A Down Payment on the Preschool Promise: This initiative creates the strategic foundation for the educational future of children through Cincinnati Preschool Promise (CPP). While still in development, CPP hopes to ensure every child in the region has access to two years of high-quality, affordable preschool regardless of income – something no other city has done. This project seeks to lay the groundwork, so CPP can ramp-up its implementation immediately if voters approve a ballot initiative in November 2016. This is a potential game-changer for Cincinnati, a city in which more than 50 percent of children are born into families below the poverty level. Applicant: 4C for Children

Concepts to be Presented at Transform Cincinnati Marketplace; Investors May Still Register

The Transform Cincinnati Marketplace gathers prospective investors in a private forum on September 30 to hear presentations from finalists. Potential investors will have the opportunity to commit to a project through grants or loans, but are not obligated to do so.

Since many transformative ideas were among the semi-finalists, background on the semi-finalists will be shared with potential investors at the Transform Cincinnati Marketplace.

“The range and creativity of these ideas – from self-sustaining green spaces to new approaches to tackling hunger and poverty through collaboration and innovative ways to brand and market sectors such as the arts are just outstanding,” said Rosenthal. “While not all can be presented, we want to make them available because we believe they have tremendous merit and are worthy of consideration by investors based on their own interests and passions.”

Individual investors who are interested in participating in the Marketplace may register at www.transformcincinnati.org/investor through September 28 or by calling Transform Cincinnati at (513) 651-1200.

About Transform Cincinnati

Transform Cincinnati connects individuals who have the financial capacity and motivation to effect dramatic change with initiatives that will have a lasting impact on the quality of life in Cincinnati and the eight surrounding counties. Learn more at www.TransformCincinnati.org.

Contact:

Rick Miller
Rick Miller Communications
rick@rickmillercommunications.com
513.608.8463

Allison Ryan
Rick Miller Communications
allison@rickmillercommunications.com
513.312.0185

18 Jun

Nearly 150 bold ideas pitched to Transform Cincinnati

Transform Cincinnati’s call for bold new ideas generated nearly 150 proposals from a wide array or organizations and individuals in the Greater Cincinnati area. Dick Rosenthal, founder of Transform Cincinnati, responded to the news: “In a word, I am stunned.  by We were told that we would have 40 to 50 applications very likely. That we got so many says to me that this idea has been waiting to surface.”

Applications, which were due by midnight on June 15, considered the following criteria:

  • Are uniquely suited to Greater Cincinnati
  • Accelerate the pulse and vibrancy of the community as Cincinnati strives to rank among the top 10 cities where people want to live, work, play and stay
  • Demonstrate lasting impact
  • Continue to be new, fresh and scalable after the initial launch
  • Have proof of success either in Cincinnati or elsewhere demonstrating that the project will accomplish bold change
  • Offer clear measures of success that can be tracked and celebrated
  • Include evidence of financial stability and organizational leadership to effect long-term change

Read more in Amber Hunt’s article, Nearly 150 bold ideas pitched to Transform Cincinnati, for the Cincinnati Enquirer.

18 Jun

Transform Cincinnati Receives Nearly 150 Applications in Program’s First Phase

Initiative to Connect Bold, Game-Changing Ideas with Potential Investors Now Moves to Application Review Stage


 Cincinnati – June 18, 2015 Transform Cincinnati, a new initiative to connect bold ideas to improve Greater Cincinnati with people who have the potential to make significant investments in the social capital of our region, has announced the results of its initial request for ideas.

Over 250 requests for applications were received by Transform Cincinnati in the past six weeks, each sharing an idea on a project that could transform the region. From these, nearly 150 completed applications were submitted by the June 15 deadline, representing potential projects from a diverse range of subject areas such as the arts, literacy, housing, health, poverty, urban revitalization and community development, various levels of education, the environment, and others.

Transform Cincinnati connects individuals who have the financial capacity and motivation to effect dramatic change with not-for-profit and for-profit entities whose ideas can have a lasting impact on the quality of life in Greater Cincinnati. The initiative is seeking ideas that may require from $1 to $10 million in funding. Transform Cincinnati itself does not provide funding, but is creating a marketplace where potential investors and bold ideas can be matched.

First Phase Exceeds Expectations

“We are truly overwhelmed and excited by the response to our initiative,” said Transform Cincinnati founder Dick Rosenthal. “Our goal was to hear from people and organizations who are thinking differently about how they can affect change in our community, and the response has exceeded our expectations.”

“Transform Cincinnati has received a truly outstanding response to our request for applications,” said Susan Ingmire, president of Ignite Philanthropy, which is assisting with application review. “But it’s more than numbers. Some applicants have told us that whether or not they make it to the next round, for the first time they are thinking more boldly about where they want to be in five or 10 years. This has to have transformative benefits for our community.”

Next Steps Detailed

The first round of application screenings is expected to be completed by July 1, with notifications sent to applicants regarding whether or not their ideas are advancing to the next round.

In early August, a comprehensive review panel, including community leaders from civic, private and the public sectors, will review applications, compare them with program criteria, and select five to seven top ideas for presentation to prospective funders. Applicants selected to advance for final presentation will be notified in mid-August.

Prospective funders will gather in a private forum on September 30 to learn more about investment opportunities, and will have the opportunity to commit to a project, but are not obligated to do so. All finalists will be notified of the status of funding opportunities by November 1.

Investors Encouraged to Register

The opportunity for prospective investors to register continues.  Interested individuals, organizations and foundations who would like to register may do so at http://transformcincinnati.org/invest/.

About Transform Cincinnati

Transform Cincinnati connects individuals and organizations that have the financial capacity and motivation to effect dramatic change with initiatives that will have a lasting impact on the quality of life in Cincinnati and the eight surrounding counties. Learn more at www.TransformCincinnati.org.


Contact:

Rick Miller
Rick Miller Communications
rick@rickmillercommunications.com
513.608.8463

Allison Ryan
Rick Miller Communications
allison@rickmillercommunications.com
513.312.0185

08 Jun

Transform Cincinnati on Local 12’s Newsmakers

The June 7 edition of Local 12 Newsmakers begins with Dick Rosenthal’s definition of success: “Success begins where other people quit.”

Channel 12’s Dan Hurley interviewed Transform Cincinnati founder Dick Rosenthal and consultant Susan Ingmire to learn more about the Transform Cincinnati initiative.

After playing a clip from Dick’s 2013 recognition as a “great living Cincinnatian,” Hurley explores the timing and motives of the Transform Cincinnati initiative, and invites Mr. Rosenthal to share what he considers to be big, transformative ideas for the region. Ms. Ingmire, meanwhile, outlines the current philanthropic climate in Greater Cincinnati and describes some existing projects which could realize significant impact on the region.

Video of the interview can be viewed on Channel 12’s site.