NC IDEA’s Economic Support & The Black Entrepreneurship Council – CEO Thom Ruhe

As the CEO of NC IDEA, Thom Ruhe is on a mission to strengthen North Carolina’s economy through grants and programs for our state’s entrepreneurs with a commitment that no less than 50% of their total time, treasure and talent will support underserved communities, defined as minority, female or rural—and obviously any combination thereof.

Recently, the organization has created the North Carolina Black Entrepreneurship Council with a commitment that 100% of all funds and programs designated exclusively serve Black founders. In this episode, Donald and Thom are talking about being a supportive leader and making meaningful change.


Donald Thompson: Welcome to the Donald Thompson podcast. I am glad to be with you today. And I have a good friend of mine and guests, the executive director of NC IDEA Mr. Thom Ruhe.

Thom Ruhe: Hey, Donald it’s pleasure to be here.

Donald Thompson: So Thom, one of the things that we like to do when we’re talking with our guests is we want to just slow things down a little bit and talk to us a little bit about your background from a family perspective, where are you from?

What brought you to North Carolina? And then we’ll have plenty of time to kind of dive into some of the business. So I’ll give you some space and just let our audience get to know you as an individual.

Full Episode Transcript

The Donald Thompson Podcast is hosted by Walk West CEO, The Diversity Movement CEO, mentor, investor, and Diversity and Inclusion Consultant Donald Thompson.

Music for this episode provided by Jensen Reed from his song, “You Can’t Stop Me”.

The Donald Thompson Podcast is edited and produced by Earfluence. For more on how to engage your community or build your personal brand through podcasting, visit

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