Laura Callanan is the founding partner of Upstart Co-Lab. Upstart is disrupting how creativity is funded by connecting impact investing to the creative economy.
Laura was senior deputy chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts, leading all grant-making programs, operations, and research before launching Upstart Co-Lab in 2015. Previously, Laura was a consultant with McKinsey & Company’s Social Sector Office and associate director of the Rockefeller Foundation where, in addition to her responsibilities managing the endowment, she co-led the Foundation’s first impact investing efforts which included two investments in the creative economy with Smithsonian Folkways Records and netomat. Laura has been a visiting fellow at the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, a scholar in residence at UC-Berkeley/Haas School of Business, a visiting scholar to the American Academy in Rome, and the recipient of a Rockefeller Foundation Bellagio Fellowship. She is the chair of the board for GlobalGiving Foundation, an advisor to Shift Capital, and a member of the British Council Policy and Evidence Centre for the Creative Industries – International Council.