Photo: Dr. Rahmat Shoureshi President, Portland State University (PSU); Kimberly Branam, Executive Director, Prosper Portland; and Wim Wiewel, Former President, PSU

Prosper Portland Executive Director Kimberly Branam noted the agency’s longtime relationship with Portland State University at PSU’s celebration of its newly completed business school expansion, the Karl Miller Center. Branam spoke at the school’s ribbon-cutting on Tuesday, September 19 to recognize the event as a key milestone in the agency’s decades-long collaboration with the university — and our shared commitment to innovation, entrepreneurship and the vibrancy of our central city.

This shared commitment has deep, historical roots.

Portland State College gained four-year college status in 1955; Prosper Portland, then the Portland Development Commission, was established just three years later. The two organizations have worked together since those early beginnings, from planning for the Portland State College campus in the mid-60s to our funding of college-related Park Blocks improvements in the 1970s, construction of the Urban Center and Plaza, relocation of the Simon Benson House, and support for the Montgomery Blocks Development Strategy.

The $2 million Prosper Portland contributed to the School of Business Administration expansion demonstrates our continued support for PSU as a leading engine of economic growth and prosperity for the Portland region, preparing tomorrow’s business, community, civic and educational leaders.

The link between a world class university and acceleration of economic growth is indisputable. With a regional impact of more than $1.4 billion, and as an employer, property owner, and community partner, PSU and the School of Business Administration are integral to achieving our vision of building a resilient city and an equitable economy that serves all its residents.

The partnership extends beyond the School of Business Administration — to include the upcoming development of 4th & Montgomery, our ongoing support of PSU’s role as an anchor of the Innovation Quadrant, the connections forged to South Waterfront through the OHSU/PSU School of Public Health partnership, and our cooperative programs providing mentoring for small businesses, particularly those owned by women and people of color.