(DETROIT – June 9, 2014) TechTown Detroit announced today that it has hired Paul Riser, Jr. as managing director, technology-based entrepreneurship.
Riser will guide the design, execution and ongoing management of the nonprofit’s technology programming: acceleration, proof of concept, university and health care system commercialization, and incubation. He will report directly to TechTown President and CEO Leslie Smith and join the nonprofit’s leadership team.
Riser is an entrepreneur, chief technologist, information officer and systems engineer with more than 17 years of professional experience working with start-up firms to global enterprises in the areas of IT systems administration, systems architecture, technology integration, technical pre-sales support and medical device development.
To join TechTown, Paul will leave his current post as chief technology and information officer for Innovative Health Technologies, a Detroit biotech startup developing health care solutions in the form of regenerative, biomimetic medical devices. Riser is also the president and CEO of the Riser Group, a Northville-based IT and business development consulting firm.
In addition, Riser is a founding member of the Legacy Associates Foundation, board member and equity partner of B.L.A.C. Magazine, and board member of the New Detroit Coalition and the Detroit Youth Connection.
As the city’s most established business accelerator and incubator, TechTown provides a powerful connection to a broad network of resources, catalyzing entire communities of entrepreneurs best poised to energize the local economy. Between 2007 and 2013, the organization created 625 technology jobs and 85 technology companies, which have gone on to secure more than $103 million in follow-on investment.
“I have no doubt that Paul will elevate our already respected pool of services – expanding our reach and increasing our impact in the support of relevant, viable and sustainable businesses and startups, and the development, attraction and retention of world-class talent within the Detroit entrepreneurial ecosystem,” Smith said. “His experience as an executive, strategist and entrepreneur, paired with his energy and commitment will be an incredible asset to our organization.”
“I am truly honored to serve as TechTown’s new managing director, technology-based entrepreneurship,” Riser said. “In building upon the phenomenal impact TechTown continues to deliver, I look forward to accelerating entrepreneurs’ access to customers and markets along the path to becoming scalable, high-growth businesses.
“This is an opportunity to contribute to the continued growth of Detroit’s entrepreneurial ecosystem and its undeniable position as an international model for entrepreneurship,” he added.
The role of managing director, technology-based entrepreneurship was previously held by Charlie Moret, who left in March to serve as president and CEO of Invest Michigan, the Michigan Economic Development Corp.’s Michigan Pre-Seed Fund.
About TechTown Detroit
TechTown is Detroit’s business innovation hub. As the city’s most established business accelerator and incubator, it provides a powerful connection to a broad network of resources, catalyzing entire communities of entrepreneurs best poised to energize the local economy. As Detroit reinvents itself, so TechTown works to reinvent Detroit. TechTown is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit and is located within the Woodward Technology Corridor SmartZone. Its programs serve entrepreneurs in the technology, retail and wholesale sectors. For more information, visit techtowndetroit.org.
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