In May 2019, Prosperity Now Board of Directors announced Gary Cunningham as Prosperity Now’s next president. He will formally assume his role in August 2019.
Gary currently serves as President and CEO of Meda in Minneapolis, MN. Meda’s proven market-based solutions address racial economic inequities by fostering minority business development. For the past three years, Meda has been recognized as the top performing Minority Business Development Center in the country by the US Department of Commerce.
Prior to joining Meda in 2014, Gary served as Vice President and Chief Program Officer for the Northwest Area Foundation. As VP and CPO, he was responsible for carrying out the foundation's mission to help communities reduce poverty in an eight-state region of the United States.
Gary formerly served as the President and Chief Executive Officer for NorthPoint Health and Wellness Center in Minneapolis. In this position, he designed and successfully led a reinvention and renewal effort that created the largest and most successful community health and human service organization in Minnesota.
Additionally, Gary serves as a trustee, director, and councilmember for several local and national organizations, including The Minneapolis Foundation, Greater MSP, the Association for Enterprise Opportunity and Prosperity Now.
Gary has been recognized for his commitment to civil rights, education and public policy. His awards and recognitions include:
- Entrepreneur of the Year Heartland Finalist, 2018
- The Minnesota Business (Real) Power 50 award, 2017
- Twin Cities’ Business 100 People to Know, 2017
- Heartland Group Imagineer Award, 2016
- Citi Leadership Program for Opportunity Finance, Executive Leader Fellow, 2015
- Alumni of the Year, Metropolitan State University, 2014
- Chieftain honor bestowed by the Republic of Liberia, 2013
- National Academy of Public Administration, Fellow, 2011
- Hubert H. Humphrey Public Leadership Award, 2006
He received his B.S. in Public Policy from Metropolitan State University and an MPA from Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government.