Trey Bowles is a serial entrepreneur, ecosystem builder, and educator. He is currently the Managing Director for Techstars in the Physical Health Fort Worth Accelerator, a partnership between Techstars and the City of Fort Worth, Tarrant County, and UNT Health Science Center.
Bowles was cofounder and President of InnoCity Partners LLC, a smart-cities consulting and project management firm focused on providing counsel to organizations across the public and private sectors to design, plan, and implement smart-cities programs. More recently, Bowles was appointed by Dallas Mayor Eric Johnson to co-chair the Task Force on Innovation and Entrepreneurship focused on determining what the city of Dallas can do to attract, support, and retain startup companies in the area.
Trey cofounded and is now Chairman Emeritus of the Dallas Entrepreneur Center (DEC), a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization created for entrepreneurs to learn how to start, build, and grow businesses through training, education, mentorship, promotion, and capital investment. As co-founder and CEO, Trey led strategy, vision, and overall planning and development efforts for the DEC. Trey also worked closely as the DEC CEO to engage executives, mentors, and other valuable experts within the Dallas community and across the country to maintain a strong and robust resource offering for DEC startups/members.
Bowles also cofounded a public private partnership called the Dallas Innovation Alliance (with partners like The City of Dallas, IBM, AT&T, Cisco, Schneider Electric, Microsoft, DART, Dallas Regional Chamber, Downtown Dallas Inc. and more) to help design, develop, and launch a Smart Cities in Dallas initiative starting in the West End Historic District and moving out across the city in a multi-phased approach. The City of Dallas is now integrating the learnings of the DIA into an overview strategy for the entire city’s smart-cities strategy. The DIA has recently expanded its focus to create the North Texas Innovation Alliance, the largest regional consortium in the country, with 23 partners including municipalities, private organizations, transportation companies, and counties to develop cross-platform and cross-municipal smart-cities strategies and solutions to support our citizens across the region.
In addition to his work with the DEC, Bowles worked closely with the Startup America Partnership, a non-profit organization started by Steve Case (cofounder of AOL), The White House, and the Kauffman Foundation, leading a team of entrepreneurial experts across the country to help high-growth startups find greater success. Bowles helped relaunch the next stage of the Startup America Partnership as the Startup Champions Network, a national network of professional ecosystem builders working together to support entrepreneurs in their local regions.
In 2011, Bowles also launched the Arts Entrepreneurship Department in the Meadows School of Arts at Southern Methodist University and currently serves as an Adjunct Lecturer on staff teaching Social Entrepreneurship and entrepreneurship within the Meadows school. Bowles also cofounded the Mayor’s Star Council with Mayor Mike Rawlings of Dallas to create a leadership development program for culturally diverse and civically minded emerging leaders who want to embrace and engage the City of Dallas as opposed to inheriting the city in 20 years.
Bowles was appointed to the National Advisory Council on Innovation and Entrepreneurship (NACIE) by Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker. He has also been recognized as one of the “Top 40 Under 40 Business Professionals” in Dallas by the Dallas Business Journal, one of D Magazine’s Top 500 Business Leaders for multiple years, and other notable recognitions.
Bowles spent the majority of his career starting and building companies in both the for-profit and non-profit space with an expertise in strategy, operations, and marketing. Bowles has held key leadership roles in the industries of music, entertainment, and disruptive technology including running the popular peer-to-peer file sharing site, Morpheus. He also led the turn-around and sale of Big Jump Media Inc. to Salem Communications (NASDAQ: SALM) in 2010.
Bowles lives in Dallas with his wife and three children and is committed to help build a collaborative ecosystem at the intersection of technology, entrepreneurship, and education within the DFW Metroplex.