RoseAnn Rosenthal, the current president and CEO of Ben Franklin Technology Partners of Southeastern Pennsylvania, announced Thursday that she will begin transitioning out of her role after 25 years with the organization.
Scott Nissenbaum, BFTP’s chief investment officer, will assume the title of president and chief operating officer beginning July 1. He will take the title of president and CEO in January, when Rosenthal will officially step down and take on a CEO emeritus role, the organization said.
In the last quarter century, the state-backed investment group provided capital to more than 1,750 “emerging and diverse enterprises” that created more than 25,000 technology-based jobs in client companies, it said. And under Rosenthal’s tenure, BFTP formed and invested in first-time venture funds, and entered into co-investment partnerships with county governments, universities and private corporations.
This year, Ben Franklin closed its $20 million GO Philly Fund, launched a “Save Our Startups” initiative with the Commonwealth to direct funding to companies affected by COVID-19, and granted $250,000 to Philly Startup Leaders for financial support for early-stage tech companies with underrepresented founders.
“I have been blessed to have had the opportunity to lead an organization whose mission, purpose and people contribute so much to our regional community,” Rosenthal said in a statement. “It is the right time for this transition: for me personally, and for the organization as a healthy milestone in development of its next strategic plan.”
Chairman Charles Robins said in a statement that Rosenthal was the “single greatest individual proponent and catalyst for spurring growth in this region through investment in early stage technology entrepreneurs.”
Robins said he believes Rosenthal was the central force in growing BFTP, supporting development of the local tech ecosystem, companies and jobs, and positioning the organization as a leader in early-stage tech economic development nationwide.
Nissenbaum joined BFTP as CIO in 2015 after more than 20 years of venture capital, entrepreneurship, academic, and operational leadership. He’s since grown the portfolio by more than 100 companies, streamlined the org’s investment processes, spearheaded fundraising for the GO Philly Fund and managed Ben’s co-investment partnerships.
“Under RoseAnn’s leadership, Ben Franklin has set the standard for world class economic development,” Nissenbaum said. “With more than 2,000 companies funded, tens of thousands of jobs created, and a quantifiable $3.9:$1 return to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, it is a privilege and honor to lead the organization into the future.”
Rosenthal, Nissenbaum and VP of Marketing and Communications Jason Bannon were collectively added to Technical.ly’s 2020 RealLIST Connectors last month.-30-