Pushing forward during a pandemic and leading with equitable purpose are topics covered in the November issue, which also recognizes the Best of Business and introduces the Future 50 class of 2021.

Have you ever wanted to be inside COSI while it was closed?

I experienced that particular thrill as a 7-year-old. My Montrose Elementary Brownie Scout troop got to spend the night inside the old COSI on East Broad Street, sleeping on the floor of what I remember as a gymnasium somewhere in the recesses of the giant building. (No, we did not run amok through the museum during the night. What a missed opportunity.)

I happen to be one of the lucky people who gets to spend time inside an empty COSI again, this time at the new building on West Broad Street. Thanks to the generosity of the COSI team and inaugural Future 50 class member Stephen White, we’ll gather in late October for three days of socially distanced, appointment-only photo shoots for the 2021 class of Future 50. I can’t help but feel a little bit of Halloweeny excitement anticipating it.

The new class of Future 50 is an outstanding, inspiring group that includes multiple company founders, a Columbus police officer working for change, a member of Gov. Mike DeWine’s cabinet, medical profession superstars and more. I cannot wait to meet them.

•••

It’s my privilege to recognize a colleague who’s made extraordinary contributions to this magazine. Rheta Gallagher, the longtime associate publisher and advertising director for Columbus CEO, Columbus Monthly and our other titles, left the company in October after an extraordinary 27-year run.

A fierce champion of her team with a wicked sense of humor and a steely determination, Rheta skillfully navigated recessions, booming economies and ownership changes through her long career.

“Rheta has played a significant and vital role in the success of Dispatch Magazines through her tenacious, savvy and enthusiastic leadership of the advertising team,” says Ray Paprocki, Dispatch Magazines publisher. “She was a relentless advocate for her reps. That leadership resulted in the fuel to support our mission of producing award-winning journalism to inform our community. I am grateful for her partnership and her role in the magazine division’s many successes.”

I, too, am grateful to Rheta. Early in my tenure as editor of this magazine, one day I was visiting her in her office facing the Ohio Statehouse, and I found myself doing what so many women do in business: Apologizing.

She stopped me. “You are the editor of the city’s business magazine,” she says. “You set the agenda.”

Thank you, Rheta, for being the powerful influence you are—and for sharing your power with others.

Coming up at Columbus CEO

• It’s a super busy fall for the magazine. I must commend our marketing and audience development manager, Lauren Reinhard, for making major change look easy during this crazy year. With her signature savvy and cool-headed nature, she’s juggled many virtual events all at once during the past few months, doing a fantastic job making them engaging and professional. Thanks, Lauren. I don’t know what I’d do without you.

• Our annual Best of Business winners and runners-up, who are celebrated on pages 30-54, will be treated to a fun, over the top virtual party emceed by late-night show host James Corden—yes, really, that James Corden—Oct. 29. It’s an invite-only, pre-recorded event produced by our corporate shows group.

• By the time this magazine comes out, we’ll have hosted our Oct. 20 Build Buzz forum for Black business owners in concert with Belle Communication. A virtual panel including me and representatives from the Columbus Dispatch, Columbus Monthly, 10TV, Belle and Gayle Saunders of the Saunders Company will share tips and best practices on pitching the media. The session will be recorded and available on our website.

• Look for the CEO of the Year awards in the December issue, when we’ll reveal four winners (unless there’s a tie, in which case there could be more) and eight or more finalists. They will be recognized during a special video celebration we’re creating with the help of our partner Mills James.

• Don’t miss our annual Survey of Economic Conditions, produced in conjunction with Bill LaFayette at Regionomics. We’re asking special questions this year related to the pandemic and the election. Those results and analysis will be published with the CEO of the Year package, as usual.

• And in January, readers can expect our second annual Future 50 special issue.