Leadership - Derek Grosso - CEO

Leadership Position:
Music City Young Professionals
Job Title:
Bachelors Degree
Lives In:
Long Island, NY

About Derek

Derek Grosso is President, CEO and Founder of the Columbus Young Professionals Club (CYP Club), a for-impact membership association made up of more than 24,000 young professionals, entrepreneurs, executives, and creatives who live in the Columbus region. It currently holds the distinction as the largest membership organization of young professionals in the United States. Through Derek’s leadership, the CYP Club has offered hundreds of events, established thousands of connections, and donated more than $350,000 to local charities since its inception.

Derek also advises young professional organizations and membership clubs around the country through The Grosso Group. He is an entrepreneur, a connector, and a community-builder.

Born and raised in New York, Derek studied entrepreneurship and small business management at The George Washington University in Washington, DC and holds a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration. Upon graduation, he was named “Entrepreneur of the Year” in 2001 by the GW School of Business.

• In 2005, after working in publishing for various magazine titles, Derek moved to Columbus to start up C-BUS Magazine with a college friend, reaching an estimated annual readership of 350,000. After serving several years as Publisher, he moved on to work as Vice President of Development for Junior Achievement of Central Ohio and completed a For-Impact Fellowship with The Suddes Group.
• In 2009, he organized the first-ever Ohio Young Professionals Weekend, a leadership summit bringing together young professional leaders and students from across the state.
• In 2013, he launched CitYPulse: The Young Professional’s Guide to Columbus as an annual magazine for young professionals and new residents to the region.
• In 2015, he formed City Venture Holdings, focused on strategic alliances and expansion, including management of The Grandview Hop, as well as young professional programming in collaboration with the Grandview Chamber of Commerce, Gahanna Area Chamber of Commerce, and Hilliard Area Chamber of Commerce.

Derek was named one of Columbus Alive’s “People to Watch” in 2009, he was honored as “Best Community Leader” by Columbus C.E.O Magazine in 2010 and 2011, and was the recipient of the Columbus Chamber’s Small Business Leader Award for 2011. In 2014, Derek was honored to be part of the inaugural class of “Smart 50” leaders recognized by Smart Business Magazine.

Community Involvement and Interests
Helping others build connections and achieve success while impacting the community is a passion of mine. I devote my time and talents to a variety of non-profit boards and community commissions, including the Jazz Arts Group, Experience Columbus, YP360, the Monumental Fundraising Project, and United Way of Central Ohio's THRIVE. I have a real appreciation for food, and I enjoy dining out and cooking. You can usually find me outdoors participating in a variety of sports and recreational activities, such as baseball, volleyball, kickball, and kayaking.

What does Columbus offer young professionals?
We live in an exciting and emerging area - one that offers business, culture, politics, sports, dining, and more. The city still has many more years of growth ahead of it and I look forward to all that will make the area even stronger. I see Columbus as a positive magnet for young professionals of all backgrounds, offering a multitude of neighborhoods, cultures, and great people.

What do you hope members get out of their involvement?
I always say that whatever you put into the organization will come back in larger number. I hope all members have a chance to get involved with the CYP Club in their own way to continue the growth of the organization. I encourage you to take advantage of the variety of events and opportunities the Club allows members to develop and connect.

What's your favorite CYP Club event and why?
A lot of members like to attend our larger events (several hundred in attendance) - and I really enjoy the large crowds. However, I tend to prefer the smaller events, where you can make a strong connection in an intimate setting.

How would you describe Columbus?
It is a diverse and growing metropolitan area that combines the best of the city and the suburbs.

Connect with Derek:

My Favorites...

My favorites...

Local restaurants:
Lindey's, Mezzo, The Refectory
Stauf's, Cafe Brioso, The Roosevelt
Lunch spot:
The North Market
TV shows:
House of Cards, It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia
The Godfather, Gladiator, Scrooged
Place to shop:
Short North
Thing about Columbus:
I love the fact that Columbus is still growing and maturing as a city. The area is also rated highly by and for entrepreneurs.