Brad Whitehead is a nonresident senior fellow at Brookings Metro. He also founded the Fund for Our Economic Future in 2004 and served as its president for 16 years. The Fund is a cross-sectoral organization advancing an inclusive growth strategy in Northeast Ohio. While president, the Fund raised and deployed over $100 million to launch and scale initiatives in cluster development, entrepreneurship, land use, workforce, mobility, and supplier diversity. He helped establish and provide initial funding for many of the region’s leading economic development organizations. Whitehead stepped down as president in March of 2020 and now serves as senior advisor.
Whitehead currently works with the newly elected Mayor of Cleveland, Justin Bibb. He helped the mayor found the Center for Economic Recovery, which is guiding the city’s $512 million American Rescue Plan allocation. The Center also pursues and invests in other federal, state, and philanthropic grants.
Prior to his leadership of the Fund, Whitehead was a senior partner at McKinsey & Company where he worked for 20 years throughout North America and Europe on a broad range of business management issues. He served as a global leader of McKinsey’s Growth & Business Building Practice. Whitehead has worked as a coach and mentor to McKinsey consultants since leaving the organization and leads professional development programs for partners and senior associates.
Whitehead now has an active consulting practice, where he works with local governments, economic development organizations, and companies on strategy and organizational performance. He also serves as a coach, helping senior executives improve their effectiveness in dealing with their organizations, boards, and community stakeholders. Whitehead serves on several corporate boards.
At Brookings, he advises communities who are pursuing inclusive growth strategies. Recent projects include support in the creation of Prosper Birmingham, the development of economic scorecards in Orlando, Indianapolis, and Memphis, and an analysis of best practices by local governments in deploying American Rescue Plan dollars. Whitehead was also involved in the creation of the Brookings Network for Economic Inclusion and was on the advisory committee for the Brookings Metro at 25 strategy.
Whitehead has an A.B. in Economics from Harvard and an M.P.A. from the Kennedy School of Government.
- Managing Partner, Whitehead Advisory Services