Top 100 Entrepreneur of the Year: Kevin Grace hopes to provide area a Rising Tide of growth

Kevin Grace

Rising Tide Initiative

Catalyst Partners

1751 River Run

- FWBP Digital Partners -

Suite 200

Fort Worth 76110

Kevin Grace knew from an early age he was going to be a success in the technology industry, and now he spends his time helping others achieve success.

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“When I was in elementary school, I put in a time capsule that I wanted to be a leader who owned a business,” Grace said. “I have been blessed to have had that experience. I’m encouraged daily to see some of the amazing innovations that the entrepreneurial community has in store for us.”

Grace started a software company at age 16, and he has devoted the past 15 years to building technology, telecom and software businesses.

“I have a passion for enabling other entrepreneurs to start in the Dallas/Fort Worth area,” Grace said. “I’d love to see the base of technology companies and local entrepreneurs continue to grow and prosper.”

Grace is a managing partner with Catalyst Partners, a Fort Worth company that helps startups via equity partnerships and consulting. It aids early-stage companies in the transition from a focus on a product or service to becoming scaled organizations.

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Earlier in his career, Grace, who received an MBA from Texas Christian University’s Neeley School of Business, led the growth and sale of two internet service providers. He led Nextlink, a local internet service provider, from its initial capital raise, business plan and online strategy to rapid network expansion and customer growth. This came despite the death of his business partner.

Grace also directed software systems and marketing at Unite Wireless, another internet service provider. He led in many areas to enable the company’s rapid growth and acquisition by JAB Broadband (now Rise).

Grace’s in-depth technical expertise first manifested itself when he started a software company and developed and marketed one of the first cloud-based customer relationship management (CRM) systems for the home security industry.

Among his current passions is the Rising Tide Initiative (RTI), of which he is a founder. The group’s mission is to enhance entrepreneurship, innovation and technology in Fort Worth and Tarrant County through a collaborative technological ecosystem.

The organization recently held its initial event in partnership with the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History.

Also a member of RTI is Mike Field, who is also a managing partner at Catalyst Partners. He believes organizations such as RTI are essential to progressive cities such as Fort Worth if they are going to continue moving forward.

“As technology continues to become a more essential part of not only technology-centric companies but all types of businesses, connecting our current tech ecosystem while continuing to foster new innovation will become vital to maintaining Fort Worth’s trajectory toward success,” Field said.

Grace hopes his efforts and those of Rising Tide can help grow the area’s technology footprint.

“I got started by being given opportunity by people within the community. Because I started at a young age, I know that had there not been a willingness to give me a chance I wouldn’t have made it very far on my own.

“I’m hoping that the future for myself and my team enables us to have a positive wide-ranging impact on others.”