KC Rising, a long-term effort to spur competitive growth in the Kansas City area, enters its third year with a focus on trade, innovation and entrepreneurship, and workforce development.
The collaboration of multiple civic groups, including the Mid-America Regional Council, Civic Council, Kansas City Area Development Council and Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce, is focused on supporting 13 specific programs.
The new goals were outlined to several hundred people Tuesday afternoon.
Under a trade umbrella:
▪ Global Cities Initiative, a five-year effort working with the World Trade Center Kansas City to assist local businesses with developing new markets for their goods and services.
▪ KC Global Design, a group working to establish Kansas City’s reputation as a global center for architecture, engineering and technology.
▪ Kinetic, a “smart transportation” focus to educate the public about the future of transportation and prepare for it.
▪ Collaborate2Cure, a “life sciences nexus” partnership with the KC Animal Health Corridor and Kansas City Area Life Sciences Institute designed to bridge the gap between human and animal health.
Under an “ideas” umbrella:
▪ KC Rise Fund, an investment fund that co-invests in local, early-stage companies along with institutional venture capitalists.
▪ KCInvestED, a group dedicated to identifying, educating and connecting investors to local companies.
▪ Innovation Hub, a virtual and physical location to assist local entrepreneurs with finding capital and encourage corporate involvement in early-stage investments.
Under a “people” umbrella:
▪ Talent to Industry Exchange, a convening of education, industry, labor and economic groups to improve the area’s talent development.
▪ KC Degrees, an effort to provide resources and financial aid to help adults complete college degrees.
▪ Talent Toolkit by TeamKC: Life+Talent, a provider of marketing packages to help companies recruit talent.
▪ KC Scholars, a Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation program that supports post-secondary education for low-income students and adults.
▪ GatewaysKC, a program that supports integration of immigrants into the workforce.
▪ Gradforce KC, a program that supports post-secondary education to prepare people for high-demand fields.
Each of the programs has specific contact persons assigned to it who can explain goals and share meeting information.
The overall KC Rising chairs for the coming years are John Murphy, a partner at Shook, Hardy & Bacon; Sandy Price, a retired human resources executive from Sprint; and William Gautreaux, an executive with Crestwood Equity Partners.