World Business Chicago Names New Executive Director of ChicagoNEXT


CHICAGO – World Business Chicago (WBC) today named Philip Nevels the new Executive Director of ChicagoNEXT, a dedicated effort to drive growth and opportunity in the business climate related to science, technology, innovation and entrepreneurship.

Nevels comes to WBC from Power2Switch, the web-based energy marketplace that he co-founded in 2009 in order to bring innovation to energy brokerage. Nevels served as the Chief Operating Officer of the company. Prior to that, Nevels worked for technology and client service companies including Google, Nokia and Accenture.

“Phil’s experiences working for well-established companies, as well as developing a startup, will enhance WBC’s ability to bridge these groups,” said World Business Chicago President & CEO Jeff Malehorn. “I’m excited to see continued acceleration of ChicagoNEXT efforts with our valued partners.”

“Power2Switch relies on successful collaboration with its partners and stakeholders. I look forward to fostering similar collaborations at ChicagoNEXT, where success will depend on entrepreneurs, corporations, investors, and universities working together cohesively,” said Nevels. “I’m passionate about making Chicago the best city in the world for technology companies, and am eager to contribute to the city’s tech ecosystem as a part of ChicagoNEXT.”

ChicagoNEXT focuses broadly on technology and science-based pursuits, with a particular emphasis on clean tech, bioscience, and web and mobile. Its goals include attracting talent, engaging alumni (university and corporate), increasing available venture capital, raising Chicago’s tech profile, connecting entrepreneurs with Chicago’s corporate community, providing a voice for the technology community and improving data collection and reporting.

ChicagoNEXT is chaired by J.B. Pritzker, managing partner of The Pritzker Group and WBC Executive Committee member, alongside WBC directors Jeff Aronin, Eric Lefkofsky and Pat Ryan Jr. The council works in conjunction with the City of Chicago and its efforts are closely aligned with the newly-announced Chicago Tech Plan, which charts a course to realize Chicago’s potential as a city where technology fuels opportunity, inclusion, engagement, and innovation for all.

“With the support of Mayor Emanuel, we’ve made tremendous strides in recent years making Chicago a great place to build and grow technology companies,” said Pritzker. “Phil is going to help us get to the next level — to make Chicago one of the top cities globally for technology, innovation and entrepreneurship.”

Creating opportunity in the tech space and fostering innovation and entrepreneurship is a key strategy of WBC’s Plan for Economic Growth and Jobs. Requested by Mayor Emanuel, WBC is implementing Plan strategies to accelerate economic growth throughout the Chicago region.

Nevels is a Chicago native who received his Bachelor of Science degree in electrical engineering from Princeton University and his Master of Business Administration from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. He begins in the position at WBC today, Monday, September 23.

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Chaired by Mayor Rahm Emanuel, World Business Chicago drives regional economic growth. WBC collaborates to create jobs, cultivate talent, and put Chicago at the forefront of the global economy. A unique public-private partnership, WBC engages business and community leaders to advance Chicago’s Plan for Economic Growth and Jobs.