U.S. Mayors to Join Public and Private Sector Organizations to Advance Inclusive Economic Development Opportunities

PALO ALTO – On March 18, Accelerator for America, in partnership with the Mastercard Center for Inclusive Growth, will host the first Opportunity Zone Investor Summit on the campus of Stanford University. Collaborative partners in this event include Economic Innovation Group (EIG), The Governance Project, Drexel Nowak Metro Finance Lab, and Stanford University Global Projects Center.

"Bottom line: opportunity zone investments are starting to flow. Our job is to level the playing field so that cities and local governments can foster inclusive, equitable, and sustainable development that help underserved populations build wealth," said Los Angeles Mayor and Accelerator for America Advisory Council Chair Eric Garcetti.

“To realize the potential of opportunity zones, we need to encourage investments that have the greatest, positive impact on distressed communities,” said Michael Froman, Vice Chairman, Mastercard. “The Mastercard Center for Inclusive Growth is unlocking insights about economic activity in distressed neighborhoods to help city leaders attract and direct investments to the places and projects that will allow communities to flourish over the long term. At Mastercard we are focused on finding new sustainable and inclusive paths for economic growth that improve quality of life and quality of jobs for everyone.”

The summit will connect city leaders and stakeholders from over 20 cities with allocators of opportunity zone capital to create and highlight norms for opportunity zones, with three primary goals:

● Showcase innovative and impactful opportunity zone communities, funds, deals, and institutions;

● Establish connections between cities, community stakeholders, developers, and investors to advance inclusive OZ projects;

● Communicate a coordinated effort that prioritizes civic outcomes to serve the interests of disadvantaged places and people;

"We want this summit to spark action and partnerships that change the way American cities design, finance, and deliver economic growth that creates new models for building wealth in disadvantaged communities," said Accelerator for America CEO Rick Jacobs.

WHEN: March 18, all day

WHERE: Stanford University Alumni Center, hosted by Stanford University Global Projects Center

WHO: Mayors, local officials, and NGOs from cities all over the country; local, regional, and national opportunity zone investors, philanthropies, financial institutions, developers, and advisors

Speakers/Panelists Include:

● Kenny Alexander, Mayor of Norfolk, VA

● Ruben Alonso, Alt Cap, Kansas City

● Ross Baird, Village Capital/Blueprint

● Sarah Bianchi, The Governance Project

● Stephanie Copeland, The Governance Project

● Rachel Diller, UrbanView/Hunt Companies

● Greg Fischer, Mayor of Louisville, KY and Accelerator for America Advisory Council Member

● Arturo Franco, Vice President, Data & Insights, Mastercard Center for Inclusive Growth

● Amb. Michael Froman, Vice Chairman, Mastercard

● Eric Garcetti, Mayor of Los Angeles and Accelerator for America Advisory Council Chair

● Rick Jacobs, CEO, Accelerator for America

● Sly James, Mayor of Kansas City, MO

● Maurice Jones, LISC

● Bruce Katz, Drexel University and Accelerator for America Opportunity Zone Advisor

● John Lettieri, Economic Innovation Group

● Lenny Mendonca, Senior Economic Advisor, CA Governor Gavin Newsom

● Otis Rolley, Rockefeller Foundation

● Shamina Singh, President, Center for Inclusive Growth, Executive Vice President, Sustainability at Mastercard

● Jonathan Tower, Arctaris Impact Fund

● Michael Tubbs, Mayor of Stockton, CA

● Nan Whaley, Mayor of Dayton, OH

● Erie Insurance Corporation

● Stanford University Global Projects Center

● City of Atlanta, GA

● Bernardillo County, NM

● City of Birmingham, AL

● City of Colorado Springs, CO

● City of Columbia, SC

● City of Erie, PA

● City of Guadalupe, CA

● City of Houston, TX

● City of Lancaster, CA

● City of Lansing, MI

● City of Macon, GA

● City of Oklahoma City, OK

● City of Seattle, WA

● City of Tacoma, WA

● City of Vancouver, WA

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● City of Waterloo, IA

The Mastercard Center for Inclusive Growth focuses on promoting equitable and sustainable economic growth and financial inclusion around the world. As a subsidiary of Mastercard, the Center leverages the company’s data, expertise and technology, along with administering the Mastercard Impact Fund’s philanthropic investments, to empower a community of thinkers, leaders, and innovators on the front lines of inclusive growth. For more information and to receive its latest insights, follow the Center on Twitter @CNTR4growth, subscribe to its newsletter, and visit www.mastercardcenter.org

Accelerator for America launches and replicates local initiatives to improve people's lives in communities across the country by creating national change from the bottom up. Its work with cities across the country to develop opportunity zone “Investment Prospectuses” was done to benefit cities creating tools and models for other cities to use. This endeavor ultimately informs national urban economic development policies. The Accelerator is also working with local governments across the country to generate local infrastructure revenues instead of relying on the unmet federal infrastructure promise. An example is Los Angeles County's Measure M, which was approved in November 2016 and generates $120 billion and 465,000 career jobs. On that same election day, which also elected Donald Trump to the White House, local governments nationwide approved $230 billion in local infrastructure improvements.