Greater Richmond’s Companies to Watch
In 2005, the angel investing community in Greater Richmond was still looking backwards at its losses from the dotcom bust, business community organizations were not partnering enough for the common good and venture capitalists viewed the Richmond Times Dispatch’s Rising 25 as the best Richmond had to offer (caterer, insurance broker, staffing agency, etc.)
As a new board member of the Venture Forum, NBI Advisors president Carl Johnson created a new program, Greater Richmond’s Companies to Watch, to highlight the area’s future employers, entrepreneurial community and brighter future. By creating a business model that benefited non-profits, sponsors and entrepreneurs, the GRCTW became the most profitable program in the 25+ year history of the Venture Forum and provided the outside world a better view of the area’s vibrant economic community. During the years that Mr. Johnson chaired or co-chaired the event, the majority of the companies highlighted in the four-color brochures either raised over $1 million in angel financing, raised venture capital or experienced a successful exit – after they were chosen as a GRCTW. Fifteen years later, the event is now known as the RVA rvAwesome Founders awards.
Top 25 of the Past 25
In 2010, as part of the Venture Forum’s 25 year anniversary, Mr. Johnson created and chaired The Top 25 of the Past 25, which highlighted companies that had been founded in the Greater Richmond area over the prior 25 years.
RVA Creativity Awards
As a board member of C3 (Creative Change Center), Mr. Johnson spearheaded the initial RVA Creativity Awards with C3 to recognize the RVA’s creative community.