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Jodi Grinwald, a business consultant, nonprofit executive, podcaster, and strategist with decades of experience in business and nonprofit work, has been named chief executive officer of the Monmouth-Ocean Development Council.

In her new role, Grinwald will lead the MODC in its mission to grow and connect businesses to foster economic growth, business development, and regional success in Monmouth and Ocean counties. Grinwald succeeds Ben Waldron, who led the organization for over 24 years and whose initiatives successfully positioned the MODC as a prominent advocate for the business community.

Grinwald said she is excited about the new opportunity to drive innovation, cultivate partnerships and advocate for the interests of MODC’s business community members.

“As an organization that is focused on economic and business development, advocacy, networking and collaboration it is important to me that we structure membership benefits, events, and opportunities in a way that will help our MODC membership family and business community thrive,” Grinwald said.

“We must key into those who have institutional knowledge and create more opportunities for emerging leaders in our area,” Grinwald added. “Overall, we must ensure that all who we advocate for have a seat at our combined tables.”

After serving as vice president of development and executive director for various national nonprofits, Grinwald co-founded her own nonprofit, the Zzak G. Applaud Our Kids Foundation, in 2017 to fully fund performing arts instruction for hundreds of children and teens in need.

Grinwald is also a sought-after motivational speaker and business consultant. Her career-coaching business, “Today is the Day” provides training, coaching and ongoing mentorship for individual clients and dozens of boutique and Fortune 500 businesses.

In 2020, Grinwald launched the “Today is the Day Changemakers” podcast and YouTube channel to highlight the stories of self-started who are disrupting the status quo. Her guests have included CNN Heroes, CEOs, professors, authors and more. She later established the virtual Changemakers International Forum to connect changemakers to each other and to foster new and deeper connections, business opportunities, and friendships.

Grinwald was honored by the Monmouth Regional Chamber of Commerce with the Athena Leadership Award in 2021 and most recently with the 2023 Governor’s Award in Arts Education (2023) and the 2023 NJBIA Collaborative Approach Award at NJBIA’s Not-for-Profit Summit in March.

The MODC is an NJBIA ChamberLink partner.