L. Ross Love, 1946-2010: Cincinnati Business Executive, Entrepreneur and Civic Leader
The L. Ross Love GrowthBridge Fund is named in honor of the late Luther Ross Love, Jr., who actively sought and attained the American Dream while helping other minority business professionals achieve their dreams as well.
Mr. Love's life story began in Yeadon, Pennsylvania, where he was born and raised by working class parents who inspired him to be successful. His parents were such great role models that Love once said by the time he was ten years old, he believed he could do anything. He put that belief to work by earning academic scholarships to pay for his college education and graduated from Syracuse University with a degree in political science in 1968.
The same year, Love moved to the Queen City to join Procter & Gamble (P&G), where he climbed the corporate ladder to the top. In 1988, he was promoted to Vice President of Advertising of P&G Worldwide, the highest position held by an African American at the company. As his own career advanced, Love helped other minorities succeed by serving as their mentor, doubling the percentage of African Americans in the advertising department and quadrupling the company's spending with minority-owned businesses.
Love retired from P&G in 1996 to become an entrepreneur. He purchased 20 radio stations in the Midwest and formed Blue Chip Broadcasting, which became the second largest African-American owned broadcasting company in the United States. In 2001, he founded Blue Chip Enterprises to invest in minority-owned businesses.
In addition to his many professional accomplishments, Mr. Love was an avid civic leader and philanthropist. He served as the Chairman of the Board of Directors of the United Way of Greater Cincinnati and was a board member for the Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber and the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center. In 2001, he initiated and co-chaired Cincinnati Community Action Now (CAN) to address racial disparities that led to civil unrest in the city, and was instrumental in launching the Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber's Minority Business Accelerator. Mr. Love was named a "Great Living Cincinnatian" by the Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber in 2009.
The L. Ross Love GrowthBridge Fund memorializes this extraordinary man whose legacy of bridging minorities to success made Cincinnati USA a better place for everyone.