Rachele Downs is an industry veteran with a diverse base of office, retail, industrial, and investment sales experience. In addition to representing owners, entrepreneurial start-ups, government and institutional owners, and global enterprises. Downs has led some of Michigan's most innovative and impactful community and economic development initiatives over the last decade.
Previously, Rachele led the inGAGE™ initiative, the Michigan Economic Development Corporation's strategy to position Michigan as the Midwest hub for high-growth women entrepreneurs. Downs designed and developed a comprehensive entrepreneurial support platform to assist Michigan women who incorporated thirty-eight (38) new companies, created two-hundred and thirty-four (234) new jobs and were granted twenty-five (25) new patents. The women founders who participated in the inGAGE™ program women raised over $45M in new capital during Downs' tenure.
As the founding Program Manager for Wayne State University's Detroit Revitalization Fellows, Downs designed, developed, and directed this innovative pilot program to increase the collaboration and capacity of community and economic development organizations at the forefront of Detroit's revitalization.
Through her involvement with CREW Detroit, Downs is a past president of the organization and is a long-time champion of CREW Careers and UCREW. Downs was founding co-chair of CREW Detroit's Diversity Equity and Inclusion Committee, 2020-2022. In 2018, she was recognized as CREW Detroit's Woman of Impact.
An alum of Leadership Detroit, Rachele was recognized by the Detroit Regional Chamber as Leadership Detroit's Emerging Leader and was named one of Crain's Detroit Business' Women in Tech in 2015.
Passionate about diversity, equity, and inclusion, Downs cofounded the Women's Sustainable Development Initiative, "WSDI," a non-profit organization dedicated to funding and mentoring emerging women developers throughout predevelopment to get their first commercial real estate projects to groundbreaking.
Education / Qualifications:
- Bachelor of Science – Public Administration and Community Development
- Master of Arts – Professional and School Counseling, Central Michigan University
- Licensed Real Estate Sales Person in Michigan