Fund for Our Economic Future welcomes three new staff to lead strategy, research and engagement to advance equitable growth

by | Jun 6, 2023

Joan Chase, Angelica Dandridge and Jeffrey Weston Sleasman named to leadership positions

CLEVELAND—The Fund for Our Economic Future (the Fund) today announced the additions of Joan Chase, Angelica Dandridge and Jeffrey Weston Sleasman into roles that will strengthen the organization’s capacity to advance equitable economic growth in Northeast Ohio. Chase and Sleasman came on board on May 15, and Dandridge began on June 5.

“I’m thrilled to welcome Joan, Jeff and Angelica to our team,” said Fund President Bethia Burke. “Their deep familiarity with core issues at the heart of our portfolio and their professional expertise complement our existing capacity and enable us to expand our impact as a civic and philanthropic collaborative working for lasting, large-scale changes that make our region’s economy more equitable and competitive.”

In her role, Senior Director of Strategic Initiatives Joan Chase will oversee the holistic execution of the Fund’s strategic direction, monitor performance for its portfolio of initiatives, and guide the organization’s “jobs to people” strategy around job access relating to the job hubs framework to drive more economic development in places with concentrations of existing talent, infrastructure and civic alignment.

Chase comes to the Fund from Allegro Real Estate Brokers & Advisors, where she led the consulting practice for government, nonprofit, and corporate clients as Senior Manager and a member of Allegro’s leadership team. In prior roles, she spearheaded the development of the Midtown Tech Hive as Director of Place for DigitalC, worked in management at the Cleveland International Fund and Greater Cleveland Partnership, and began her career in management consulting at Accenture. Chase holds an M.S. in Urban Studies with a concentration in Economic Development from Levin College of Public Affairs and Education at Cleveland State University and a B.A. in Economics from Case Western Reserve University. She is a published author of research and has served on boards and committees of local organizations including Cogswell Hall, Bad Girl Ventures and The Cleveland Foundation’s Neighborhood Connections program.

As Senior Director of Applied Research, Jeffrey Weston Sleasman will support data-driven decision-making across the Fund’s strategic initiatives and in partnership with civic actors throughout the region through research and analysis connected to real-world solutions and policy implications. He previously served on the advisory committee of The Paradox Prize as a civic advocate for transit access and worked with the Fund as a consultant in 2022 to synthesize findings from the eight pilot projects. Building on this, he will lead the Fund’s “people to jobs” strategy, applying insights from The Paradox Prize to support more equitable transportation access across Northeast Ohio.

Sleasman has diverse professional experience in international economic development, institutional research administration, and biomedical technology, having worked in both the for-profit and non-profit sectors. Most recently, Jeff has been the co-Founder and CEO of Boussole, LLC, an independent consumer packaged goods firm that spun out from a small biotech company. He holds an MBA from The Fisher School of Business at The Ohio State University and bachelor’s degrees from Miami University. Jeff sits on the Board of Trustees for the Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority and on the City of Cleveland’s Transportation Infrastructure Advisory Committee.

Angelica Dandridge is the Fund’s Director of Board Engagement and Development. She will focus on stewardship and engagement with current funders and members, cultivating new partnerships, and bridging the philanthropic and civic priorities of the Fund’s network where they intersect with the organization and across members.

Dandridge joins the Fund from Venture for America, where she most recently served as Vice
President of Community Partnerships, leading 13 leadership teams of Executive Directors, 650+ board members and stakeholders, and 1,500+ fellows & alumni to build transformational relationships and grow collaborative networks. Dandridge also held several roles at her alma mater, Spelman College, in strategic planning, advancement and entrepreneurship curriculum prior to relocating to Cleveland. She graduated from Spelman College with a bachelor’s degree in music and went on to earn a master’s degree from George Mason University. Dandridge grew up in Columbus, Ohio, and enjoys a variety of creative hobbies including singing, web design and graphic design. Dandridge is also a proud member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., and is active in Lambda Phi Omega Chapter in Cleveland.

About the Fund for Our Economic Future

The Fund for Our Economic Future is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization working to advance a more equitable economy in Northeast Ohio. This civic collaborative brings together leaders across sectors and throughout the region to collectively invest in, test and amplify strategies to enable the region to achieve its full potential. Since 2004, the Fund has developed enduring strategies to grow the everyone economy—where good jobs and rising incomes are within reach for all residents. Learn more at thefundneo.org.

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