Blackstone LaunchPad Syracuse Students Named Top Leaders by Business Insider and Fortune

Syracuse University LaunchPad alumni are making lists for their entrepreneurial leadership skills!

Syracuse University LaunchPad students are making lists! Recently, Josh Aviv was named by Business Insider as one of the top 100 Business Leaders today, while Fortune named Kelsey Davis as one of the top 8 Gen Z leaders to watch. Read their stories below.

Kelsey Davis, CLLCTVE

The following is excerpted from Fortune’s article “8 Up-And-Coming Gen Z Founders to Watch Right Now.” Read the full article here.

Davis started creating content for brands like Coca Cola in high school, and Puma while still an undergrad at Syracuse University. She founded CLLCTVE to help connect such companies with other young creators. The networking platform is designed to empower all kinds of creators to assemble careers out of their unique skill sets, no matter where they live. Users can build a profile with background information and links to their work for brands to find, and can connect with the other creators on the platform. Brands such as in-app food delivery service Good Uncle, influencer marketing company Whalar, and banking technology Current have all tapped into CLLCTVE’s creator network. “Our ultimate goal is really democratizing the playing field within the creator economy,” Davis says. “We think everyone’s a creator. I think it’s a matter of people being able to see themselves as such.”

Generation Z, said Davis, is not receiving, or at the very least, not accepting the same messaging about career trajectory as previous generations. She said young people are asking themselves: “What do we want to do? And then how can we take the things that we’re passionate about, and then monetize them?”

“We’re really into fueling people’s independent work journey,” said Davis of her goal to make CLLCTVE a global force. “I think that, you know, Gen Z specifically, we’re understanding, ‘Hey, I really can be whatever I want.’”

Josh Aviv, SparkCharge

The following is excerpted from Business Insider’s series “100 People Transforming Business.” Read the full article here.

SparkCharge CEO Joshua Aviv is driven by one mission: helping people overlooked in the electric-vehicle-adoption equation find a place to plug in.

“If we really want to make EVs available to everyone, we need to have an infrastructure that’s available to everyone,” Aviv told Insider.

That’s why he founded SparkCharge in 2017. SparkCharge, based in Somerville, Massachusetts, offers an on-demand mobile service to bring charging capability to anyone, anywhere. It’s not just for people who run out of juice on the road (though it can help them out), but for EV drivers wanting to charge while they’re at the office, out on the town, or at home.

“There are a lot of cities and towns that are, really, charging deserts,” Aviv said. “We’re charging those EV owners who typically live in apartments, condos, high-rises that don’t have access to EV charging.”

This past year, SparkCharge launched an app, called Currently, that complements its portable charging device, called the Roadie. The “charging as a service” is not unlike hailing an Uber; for $25 a month, users can request a SparkCharge portable charger to be brought to their EV.

The service is available in San Francisco, San Jose, Los Angeles, and Dallas. The startup hopes to double its size and network and expand into other cities in the coming months.

Ultimately, Aviv hopes to solve what he sees as the biggest barrier to widespread EV adoption.

“The restrictions are definitely there, because essentially you have to plan and monitor where you go because you know that you don’t have this luxury of having a charging station on every corner,” Aviv said.

“We’re removing that idea that you constantly have to be worried or have that anxiety around where you drive.”