Civic News

You’ll recognize these tech pros among the 2022 ‘most influential people in Philly’ list

Investors, business org leaders, founders and small business owners made Philadelphia Magazine's annual list.

Kieth Leaphart, founder of Philanthropi. (Courtesy photo)
Getting self-referential for a moment: It’s always fun to see who other local media folks see as influential. publishes its own annual RealLIST Connectors tracking the most connective community members in each of our markets, focused on tech and business leaders. When there’s overlap with other outlets’ lists, we take notice.

Each year, Philadelphia Magazine releases a list aiming to catch the pulse of who’s who in the Philly political, business, education, infrastructure and entertainment worlds. And the newly released 2022 edition — “The 100 most influential people in Philadelphia” — includes, as usual, folks shaping the tech and business sectors. That includes executives at huge corporations, startup leaders reinvigorating industries, and those dipping their toes into local political elections.

Here’s who we took special notice of on the latest list:

The Comcast bigwig

This year’s runner up, ranking only after gubernatorial candidate Josh Shapiro, was Comcast CEO Brian Roberts. The mag called out the move to bring 8,000 workers back to its Center City offices, and also called out the challenges Roberts faces this year.

“For Center City to thrive, Comcast must thrive,” the magazine said. “And as CEO of the largest cable TV provider in America, Roberts now has to weigh a possible $1 billion in budget cuts as households continue to cut the cord.”

The money guys

Tech investors and entrepreneurs Paul Martino, Josh Kopelman and Keith Leaphart also ranked among the influential folks on the list.

Of Kopelman, Philly Mag said: “The city’s most fascinating venture capitalist is doing more than just investing (like a recent $6 million stake in software company Canonic Security). He’s also expanding access and opportunity for emerging innovators (launching his First Round Capital’s Angel Directory and first-ever Health Unconference).”

Martino, for his part, is managing partner at Bullpen Capital increasingly becoming known for his work as a Republican donor. Leaphart is a founder whose Philanthropi recently expanded its personal giving platform.

The equity minders

When it comes to business services, these impactful women remain must-knows in the city: The Enterprise Center’s Della Clark  and the African-American Chamber of Commerce of PA, NJ & DE’s Regina Hairston.

“As two of the leading voices for Black entrepreneurship in the city, Clark (the Enterprise Center) and Hairston (the African American Chamber of Commerce) are tasked with tackling one of the most pressing questions we face — in a city with climbing property values and booming venture capital, how do we ensure that all Philadelphians partake of the prosperity,” The magazine said.

The activists

Harriet’s Bookshop owner Jeannine Cook also landed on the list for her activism, and with her is trashman-turned-candidate for City Council Terrill Haigler.

The fast movers

And Gopuff cofounders Rafael Ilishayev and Yakir Gola also make the list, though the mag calls out that it’s been a rocky year for the pair.

“Their road to world domination hit a few bumps this year, as the founders of NoLibs-based GoPuff slashed 10 percent of their workforce in July, put a proposed IPO on the shelf, and shuttered warehouses around the globe,” it said.

Companies: Gopuff / Comcast / Philadelphia Magazine

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