Jennifer Montana has 20 years experience in high-tech economic strategy planning and industry competitiveness analysis, which she has used to help corporate, academic and government organizations jointly articulate highly compelling core value propositions and strategies to position their regions for sustainable development. She launched two successful firms in which she led business development, service innovation, and strategy. Jennifer is a recognized analytical trendsetter with significant leadership and organizational development talent.
Her research in industry cluster analysis is internationally known, and she has had the honor of sharing her work as a keynote speaker and panelist worldwide and through many publications. Jennifer’s decision to publish her last company’s most significant intellectual property reflected her commitment to innovation within her industry and her roots in education. It resulted in substantial interest from academics and policy makers from China and India to Poland and England.
Having always recognized that high quality education is a key factor for sustaining competitiveness and quality of life within a regional economy, Jennifer has decided to implement rather than consult at this juncture in her career.
The Innovation Institute represents a foundational recommendation to all economic regions she has advised, namely continued high quality investment in youth education from the earliest years. Jennifer has been highly involved in the STEM (Science, Technology Engineering and Math) debate, prior to the birth of the acronym. She has worked closely with industry, academic, non-profit and government leaders for two decades to advance investment in a science and technically skilled workforce.
Understanding that schools, whether universities, community colleges, or K-12 cannot provide all of the solutions, Jennifer has launched The Innovation Institute to contribute to ensuring that young people will become adults who can choose to participate fully in the Massachusetts “Innovation” economy—which continues to drive high and rising standards of living in the Commonwealth. She is focused on the gaps that students sometimes encounter in science and engineering education at the primary- and middle-school levels.
Jennifer believes in community and commitment to service. She founded and launched the Friends of the British School of Boston Foundation, participating as a BOD for its first two years. She was a panel judge for the U.S. EDA’s National Excellence in Economic Development Awards. She has served on numerous advisory committees, including the Center for Regional Innovation’s Experts Committee at the Council on Competitiveness and the Governor’s Council on Economic Growth and Technology Benchmarks Taskforce. She undertook pro-bono consulting for foundations and academic institutions, including Lemelson-MIT, University of Massachusetts, and the Boston Foundation. Her other volunteer activities include: senior ministerial advisory team, First Church of Cambridge; BOD, Cambridge-Ellis School; GSAS Fund alumni chair and Career Services speaker, Harvard.
Jennifer received her BA from the University of Wisconsin, Phi Beta Kappa; and MA and PhD from Harvard University, in political science, as a Jacob K. Javits National Fellow.
Jennifer resides with her husband and two children in Cambridge Massachusetts.
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