Future 50: Jordan Davis, Smart Columbus

Katy Smith
2020 Future 50 class member Jordan Davis.

Future 50 Class of 2020

Jordan Davis

Director, Smart Columbus, Columbus Partnership

About: Jordan Davis, a Westerville native, was part of the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Smart Cities Challenge grant writing team, where she helped coordinate the private follow-on contributions that provided a significant boost to Columbus’ ultimately successful application. She went on to lead the strategic planning for the Smart Columbus initiative; partnered on the creation of the Smart Columbus Operating System; development of the Smart Columbus Experience Center; and the launch of Ohio’s first self-driving shuttle. As staff with the Columbus Partnership, Davis was on the team that made the city of Columbus’ finalist pitch to host the 2016 Democratic National Convention and helped create the Ohio State Student Engagement Initiative to retain students in the region after graduation. She holds a bachelor’s degree in political science and leadership studies from Ohio State University.

Outside work: Co-founder of the Central Ohio Leadership Academy, a one-week leadership intensive program with a diverse group of high school leaders; three-time chair of the Create Columbus Commission; board member of Columbus School for Girls; former board member for Columbus Crew Foundation and Franklinton Development Authority Advisory Board. Davis recently became a resident of the Franklinton neighborhood.

50 ideas to move the region forward. Here's who else is in the Future 50 Class of 2020.

What does Columbus need to thrive? “We must think differently about everything in our civic infrastructure to mitigate the pain of [projected regional] growth. Our current growth is not shared equally. To prevent further division, we should urgently and proactively remove the barriers to opportunity. Instead of waiting for a congestion problem similar to Nashville or Austin, commit to high-capacity transit today with dedicated lanes. Let’s make it a norm for employees to get mobility benefits to take other modes to work rather than driving alone. Let’s commit to carbon neutrality. Incentivize market adoption of energy efficient operations and the electrification of transportation.”

Davis’ idea: “This group should author a CEO magazine feature of 10 moonshot ideas that could change the future of Columbus for the better. We could facilitate an ideation retreat to deepen the connections across the cohort and build off the initial ideas held independently. Once a mind is expanded, it can never shrink.”

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