Press Release

Partnership Announces New Vice President of Innovation

Sheena Fowler leads a new team focusing on innovation with an emphasis on entrepreneurship and technology

Orlando Economic Vice President of Innovation Sheena Fowler

Orlando, Fla. – The Orlando Economic Partnership (the Partnership) proudly named Sheena Fowler as Vice President of Innovation. In this new role, Fowler will oversee the Partnership’s efforts toward expanding the regional innovation economy.

Since joining the Partnership in 2009, Fowler has elevated the organization’s work in both business development, specifically in innovative technologies, working on projects including Amazon, WeWork and SightPlan, and as the Orlando Film Commissioner, advocating for the film and digital media industry. In 2018, she was inducted into the Ninth Class of the Full Sail Hall of Fame.

“A unique combination of the creative and the technical makes Sheena’s work in the innovation space invaluable to the Partnership.”

Tim Giuliani, Orlando Economic Partnership President and CEO

“She has been instrumental in expanding the reputation of our regional innovation economy by helping to bring Rise of the Rest® to Orlando, and now Synapse Orlando, working with public partners to develop the Orlando Technology Community Support Pilot program and forging a new alliance with Synapse to connect our tech and entrepreneurial ecosystems,” Giuliani said.

Following the announcement that the Rise of the Rest® Road Trip would kick off its eighth annual tour in Orlando, regional entrepreneurs submitted 152 pitches for the competition, the most received in the tour’s history. With Fowler’s contributions, Rise of the Rest® shone a spotlight on local entrepreneurs and worked to foster the spirit of innovation throughout the region’s startup community.

“Sheena’s leadership is critical to our efforts to strengthen Orlando’s position as a technology hub and to grow our region’s capabilities and resources.”

Scott Roberson, Advanced Programs Director at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control and Chairman of the Orlando Economic Partnership’s Technology Working Group

“We’ve made significant strides in advancing entrepreneurship, innovation and collaboration and continue to attract new talent to support a variety of business needs,” Roberson said.

Fowler also leads the Partnership’s Technology Working Group, which brings together a high-level group of industry experts to enhance the region’s competitiveness and effect meaningful and lasting change to foster long term economic growth and regional broad-based prosperity™.

“There’s incredible momentum building in our community right now,” Fowler said. “I look forward to collaborating with our partners to unlock our future potential and continue to accelerate the success of our businesses. Working as a convener and as a resource for our entrepreneurs and startups my focus will be on bridging our entrepreneurs to the larger business community.”  

Under Fowler’s direction, the new Partnership Innovation team will include Vanessa Zabala, director of Impact Development, and is focused on accelerating the pace of growth of new ideas through the implementation of new opportunities and programs.

“Innovation is a core component of Orlando’s DNA and its entrepreneurial ecosystem is critical to the success of the regional economy.”

Sheena Fowler, Orlando Economic Partnership Vice President of Innovation

“The momentum generated by AOL Co-Founder Steve Case kicking off Rise of the Rest can only build from here. I look forward to continuing to foster the spirit of innovation throughout the startup community,” Fowler said.