39 North AgTech Innovation District Becomes 501(c)3 Organization

Emily Lohse-Busch announced as Executive Director of the innovation district.

On April 25th, St. Louis Economic Development Partnership (STL Partnership) and six other local economic and agriculture technology organizations announced the establishment of the 39 North AgTech Innovation District as a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization.

The Donald Danforth Plant Science Center hosted the 39 North: Now and Next event to announce the new entity and executive director of 39 North. Former Arch Grants executive director, Emily Lohse-Busch, has been tasked to lead the new organization.

“The vision for 39 North is bold,” said Emily. “But when we succeed, I am confident that agri-food tech leaders throughout the world will know our name.”

Emily Lohse-Busch, Executive Director of 39 North

39 North is an agriculture-focused innovation district that is anchored by the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center, BRDG Park, Helix Center Biotech Incubator and Bayer Crop Science. In 2022, a task force was created to explore how best to leverage the assets and investments to create a greater impact in 39 North. With committed anchor institutions, the task force recommended establishing the innovation district as a nonprofit entity.

The anchor institutions include STL Partnership, Greater St. Louis Inc., City of Creve Coeur, MO, Donald Danforth Plant Science Center, CoverCress, Benson Hill and Bayer Crop Science.

The newly formed nonprofit will follow the 39 North Master Plan and be a key factor in the economic growth of the district and the surrounding community. The district will be geared toward lifestyle preferences often sought by highly-skilled employees, including mixed retail, residential, and office space connected by walking and biking trails and green space.

Rodney Crim, CEO and President of STL Partnership

During the event, audience members heard special remarks from organization leaders, including Rodney Crim, CEO and President of STL Partnership and County Executive Dr. Sam Page who presented a proclamation declaring April 25th as 39 North Day in St. Louis.

“This is a day of celebration,” said Rodney Crim, CEO and President of STL Partnership. “39 North is living proof of how an innovation district and collaboration can drive economic growth in communities.”

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