Tampa Bay EDC

Tampa Bay Economic Prosperity Foundation

For more personalized research or archival information, please contact:

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Michelle Bauer


(813) 518-2644

About the Foundation

The Tampa Bay Economic Prosperity Foundation (TBEPF) was formed in 2018. Its mission is to conduct research and educate our community about issues that affect job creation and economic opportunity in Tampa Bay.

On September 20, 2022, TBEPF launched CertUp Tampa, a multimedia campaign created to promote awareness among residents of East Tampa, Central Park and Ybor City about short-term career training programs for high-demand jobs that offer good pay and great opportunities for advancement with local employers.

Dr. Ken Atwater

Hillsborough Community College, Chairman

Colleen Chappel

Vice Chair

Patty Hamilton

Marcum LLP, Secretary/Treasurer

Nathaniel Doliner

Carlton Fields, Director

Felicia Harvey

Corporate Communications

Craig J. Richard

President & Ceo, Tampa EDC
President & CEO, Tampa Economic Prosperity Foundation

Inclusive Economic Growth Strategy

In 2020, the TBEPF and the Tampa Bay EDC began meeting with partners in the City of Tampa and Hillsborough County to understand how best to address income inequality and foster greater investment in Qualified Opportunity Zones (QOZs) and Community Redevelopment Areas (CRAs). Working closely with City of Tampa Mayor Jane Castor and her economic development team, the Tampa Bay EDC and TBEPF determined that a campaign was needed to capitalize the initiatives required to bring living wage jobs and investment to priority QOZs and CRAs in Tampa and Hillsborough County.

The Inclusive Economic Growth Initiative (IEGI) has a two-pronged strategy for generating greater economic prosperity: creating jobs in economically distressed areas of Tampa and Hillsborough County through awareness of investment and career opportunities.

The Initiative was developed in collaboration with the City of Tampa, Hillsborough County, Career Source Tampa Bay, and Hillsborough Community College. Its general purposes are to:


Conduct outreach to identify community partners and projects.

Reimbursable training expenses for instructor wages, curriculum development and materials for new value-added businesses or provide existing Florida businesses the necessary training for expansion.

Target Area Programs, including Opportunity Zones, New Markets Tax Credits, and Community Redevelopment Areas.


Build and market an Opportunity Zones Program by identifying catalytic projects that will generate job growth in QOZs and CRAs including:

• East Tampa

• Central Park/Ybor City

• University Area/Uptown


Develop and promote site-ready initiatives and evaluate projects for catalytic placemaking potential (feasibility & due diligence).

• Leverage partner TBEDC’s economic development capacity to drive projects and initiatives in each target area

• Utilize network of real estate, development, and finance experts to secure investment. 


Develop awareness campaigns to:

  • Promote the skills development of the local workforce in QOZs and CRAs
  • Generate living-wage employment opportunities for residents in those areas in partnership with CareerSource Tampa Bay, HCC and local employers.

Prosper Tampa Bay Campaign

In February 2021, the TBEPF established its first capital campaign, Prosper Tampa Bay.

The goal of the Prosper Tampa Bay campaign is to raise $2 million by September 30, 2022 to support the Inclusive Economic Growth Initiative over three years, 2021 – 2023. The Tampa Bay EDC is donating $600,000 in kind over that three-year period to provide staff for the initiative.

Bob Buckhorn

City of Tampa, 2011-2019

Dr Ken Atwater

Hillsborough Community College

Ron Christaldi

Managing Partner

Ed Narain

Vice President, External & Legislative Affairs

Randy Simmons

R.R Simmons Construction

Jim Weiss

Regional President, South Florida
Fifth Third Bank

Our Donors

The Tampa Bay Economic Prosperity Foundation is grateful for the support of these generous donors to the Prosper Tampa Bay Campaign:

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