Wednesday 7 December 2022
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Upstate Minority Economic Alliance Names Ricky Brown Executive Director

By Staff –


Rickey BrownThe Upstate Minority Economic Alliance (UMEA) has named Rickey Brown as its first executive director.

Brown will be responsible for building the organization into a viable regional chamber while expanding the capacity of, and fully advocating for the advancement of, minority- and women-owned businesses in the region.

He previously served as director of community engagement for Home HeadQuarters Inc., and worked primarily to increase minority and women-owned business enterprise participation in state-funded contracting opportunities.

“With more than 10,000 minority-owned businesses in the region, UMEA serves a critical role in enhancing economic opportunity,” Ed Cuello, board president of UMEA, stated. “We are extremely excited to have Rickey on board, to help build a robust organization, in partnership with CenterState CEO, which will significantly contribute to the Central New York economy.”

In addition, “Rickey’s appointment fulfills a three-year collaborative effort to establish the region’s first minority chamber of commerce,” Robert Simpson, president of CenterState CEO, stated. “Our region’s economic future depends upon our ability to provide access to opportunity to every corner of our community. CenterState CEO looks forward to working alongside Rickey and UMEA, as we strive to harness the full economic potential of our minority business community for the benefit of the region.”

UMEA is a nonprofit chamber of commerce, supporting minority business owners and professionals of color in Central New York. It is the first minority chamber of commerce located in the 16 county Upstate New York region.

“I am confident under the stewardship of CenterState CEO, the Upstate Minority Economic Alliance will grow and prosper into a formidable regional chamber, and one of increasing opportunity for its members,” Brown said. “I look forward to hearing from the members of the local business community, and learning how we can support their businesses.”

Brown holds a B.A. in finance from Syracuse University’s Whitman School of Management, and he is also a local graduate from Anthony A. Henninger High School.

Visit for additional information regarding UMEA.

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