About Carol Coletta: American businessperson | Biography, Facts, Career, Life
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Carol Coletta
American businessperson

Carol Coletta

Carol Coletta
The basics

Quick Facts

Intro American businessperson
Is Businessperson
From United States of America
Field Business
Gender female
The details


Carol Coletta is a national expert on urban revitalization, particularly on the value of economic integration in American cities and how to achieve it. She is currently a senior fellow at The Kresge Foundation with its American Cities Practice. Carol has also worked with The Knight Foundation, ArtPlace, CEOs for Cities and the Mayors Institute on City Design to bring awareness to her mission.


The Kresge Foundation

Carol is currently a senior fellow with The Kresge Foundation’s American Cities Practice. She is leading a proposed $40 million collaboration of foundations, nonprofits and governments to demonstrate the ways in which a connected set of civic assets – a civic commons – can promote community and lead to more widely shared prosperity for cities and neighborhoods.

Knight Foundation

Carol served as the vice president of Community and National Initiatives for the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, a national foundation with deep local roots in 26 cities across the U.S. Her strategic focus at Knight was to understand how robust public life can accelerate talent, opportunity and engagement. To do that, she has deployed grants, challenges, research, local leadership development and national and local convenings of academics, policymakers and practitioners (with special emphasis on practitioners). At Knight she manages a portfolio of more than $50 million annually in grants and a team of 18 in 10 cities to drive success in cities. She was recruited to the foundation to lead a new portfolio created from a merger of two departments. While at Knight Foundation, she has championed support for the creation of City Observatory, Gehl Institute, Theaster Gates’ PlaceLab, Better Block Foundation and Lean Urbanism.


Carol led the two-year start-up of ArtPlace, a unique public-private collaboration to accelerate creative placemaking in communities across the U.S. The collaboration includes 13 of the nation’s leading foundations, eight federal agencies, including the National Endowment for the Arts, and six of the nation’s largest banks.

CEOs for Cities

Prior to being recruited to start ArtPlace, Carol was president and CEO of CEOs for Cities for seven years. The organization under her leadership was a Chicago-based national network of urban leaders in 45 of the nation’s top metro areas who are building and sustaining the next generation of great American cities.

The Mayors’ Institute on City Design

Carol served as executive director of the Mayors’ Institute on City Design, a partnership of the National Endowment for the Arts, U.S. Conference of Mayors and American Architectural Foundation. She also ran a Memphis-based public affairs consulting firm, Coletta & Company, where she served business, foundations, nonprofits and government on the broadest range of civic issues. For nine years, she was host and producer of the nationally syndicated weekly public radio show Smart City, where she interviewed more than 900 international leaders in business, the arts, and cities. At Knight, she revived a version of the show via podcast called Knight Cities.

Work and publications

The Kresge Foundation’s Talking About Cities

Carol hosts and produces a show called Talking About Cities that unearths innovative ideas for making cities successful and interviews the leaders behind them. This podcast can be found on SoundCloud and Apple’s iTunes.

Smart City Radio

For nine years, Carol was the host and executive producer of Smart City Radio, a nationally syndicated public radio talk show in which she interviewed more than 900 international leaders including national and international public policy experts, elected officials, economists, business leaders, artists, developers, planners and others for a discussion of urban issues.


Carol was a Knight Fellow in Community Building for 2003 at the University of Miami School of Architecture. Her paper on the Future of Cities, produced for the University of Houston–Clear Lake’s Future Studies program, was selected for presentation to the World Future Society annual meeting. She is a candidate for a Master of Design Methods at the Institute of Design at Illinois Institute of Technology IIT. She is frequently interviewed as an expert on urban issues by national media and is an active speaker on the success formula for cities and creative communities. In 2010, she was named a Senior Fellow of the Design Futures Council. She was named one of the world’s 50 most important urban experts by a leading European think tank.

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Article Title: Carol Coletta: American businessperson - Biography and Life
Author(s): PeoplePill.com Editorial Staff
Website Title: PeoplePill
Publisher: PeoplePill
Article URL: https://peoplepill.com/people/carol-coletta
Publish Date: 16 Dec 2016
Date Accessed: 27 Sep 2022
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