Tom Walker has resigned as CEO and president of i2E Inc., an Oklahoma City-based nonprofit organization that uses some public funding to help early-stage, high-growth companies find capital and other development resources.
Walker, a founding member and 14-year employee of i2E, will leave this summer to lead a similar nonprofit organization called TechColumbus in Columbus, Ohio.
“I have mixed feelings, obviously,” said Walker, 43. “I love it here, but it's an exciting opportunity.”
The i2E board will conduct a national search for Walker's successor, said Roy H. Williams, president of the Greater Oklahoma City Chamber and i2E board chairman. Walker said he will continue working with i2E during the transition period.
Walker said i2E has diversified revenue sources in recent years while creating new investment funds for local entrepreneurs.
“It's a really nice position for the next leader to come and take it to the next level,” he said.
The company brought $40 million of investment capital under management through a series of new investment funds that match the stages of new company development and growth, including a $1 million grant from Federal Economic Development Administration and an additional $1.2 million in matching funds from local partners.
“Tom has shown great tenacity, creativity, and vision in creating partnerships and attracting funds from the federal government, private foundations, and angel investors,” Williams said. “Under his leadership, i2E has built an Oklahoma model that produces the type of high-quality startups that attract investors' interest and capital.”