As Director of the Client Acquisition Team, Louie drives how companies find a soft landing—and great talent—in Tulsa.
Where did you start your career?
I grew up in Rochester, New York and my undergraduate degree is a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Musical Theater. After graduation, I moved to New York City to pursue a career performing on Broadway. I did national tours for five years, visiting 49 out of 50 U.S. states, and also toured in Europe and Israel. Then I returned to New York City, but grew tired of the rat race of theater. I got my real estate license in Manhattan and had success with it, then went on to get an MBA from Columbia University.
During that time, I met my husband who is from Tulsa. We’d come back here for all the holidays and I was noticing the development of downtown Tulsa. We decided to move here to be closer to his family, and a buddy of mine from business school said I needed to meet his friend Mike Bosch, who runs Atento Capital. Mike got me plugged into Tulsa’s ecosystem.
How did you get into your career at inTulsa?
After business school, I knew I wanted to help develop and grow teams and ecosystems through a lens of entrepreneurship. I started at inTulsa in 2020 and have been part of the growth since, determining our niche in Tulsa’s ecosystem—how we can be helpful and where we can find the most success as quickly as possible. I enjoy working with small companies, but if we’re talking about thousands of job placements in Tulsa, it’s hard to do that with early-stage companies. So we’re working with growth-stage companies now too.
What’s the day-to-day of your role like?
My core focus in my role has been supporting companies’ awareness and development of their awareness of our city, and then helping them expand and have a soft landing in Tulsa. If I can check all of those boxes, it’s been a successful day.
A bunch of things go into achieving success in this role. I have to know the ecosystem very well. I need to have the right tools to understand the company’s needs, the right partners to pull in at the right time so we can get the company here and help them grow, develop and expand. Hopefully we’re under-promising and over-delivering.
What do you love most about your career?
What I like about is that I’m not the type who can sit behind a desk all day. I need to be out doing things, making calls, working through problems. At its core, my career has always been about storytelling — telling stories on stage as a performer, figuring out what the real estate story is, financial acumen and business acumen, and now it’s figuring out entrepreneurs’ stories. I think it’s fascinating.
What stands out to you about working at inTulsa?
One thing I love touting about Tulsa is that I can get things done very quickly here because there are so many willing partners. There are so many people who are experts in their domains.
What stands out about inTulsa itself is really our internal team. I’m proud of the group of humans we’ve gathered at inTulsa. They’re human-centric, candidate-centric. We’ve brought in recruiters who care so much about people and their careers, and have removed the commission structure typical elsewhere, so they can help people. It’s amazing to see the magic that happens when humans get to help humans how they want to help.
What do you look for when partnering with companies interested in coming to Tulsa?
The bottom-line common denominator is a willingness to be a part of what’s happening in Tulsa. There’s a palpable energy here. When we’re able to schedule a company’s visit, our conversion rate is very high—because Tulsa shines very well.
If you’re building a 21st-century tech product, Tulsa is the way to do it. The amount of support and energy behind what we’re doing here differs so much from what I experienced in New York and on the East and West Coasts. It’s not a rat race. It’s a very supportive environment.
What’s unique about inTulsa’s approach to helping businesses grow?
For us, it’s about the most important part of your company—the talent. If you don’t have the right people, there’s no way to make the right product or build the right business.
At inTulsa, we’re doing things in a different way. We’re steering away from pedigrees and experience levels, because there are a lot of overlooked people and underemployed talent here. I like to use as an example Tulsa’s Holberton School—a 20-month vocational coding program. Some of their students are high school graduates. They have other workforce experience, so they have maturity, but they also have learned coding and can grapple with coding languages very quickly. This makes them very interesting candidates.
What advice do you have for people early in their careers, or who are making a switch to a tech career?
There is so much information at your fingertips. We all have these computers in our pockets, and you can find the information as you want. You have more control than you think.
Second is having an air of confidence. If you’re reading an interview like this and you find something of interest that’s said, reach out to the person who gave the interview and say, “I find this fascinating. Do you have ten minutes to talk more about this idea?”
That’s the kind of snowball effect that people are looking for. Technology is about progressive thought and making things better and more efficient. You have to be a part of something that wants to grow and develop, and you have to be autonomous in how you find the information and not afraid to reach out and talk to people.
What do you love about Tulsa?
We bought our house here, and I love it. We live in midtown, and I work downtown while my husband works in Jenks. Other cities have hour-long commutes, so the ability to get anywhere in Tulsa in twenty minutes is amazing. Our restaurant scene is amazing. The fact that we have the ballet, opera, symphony, and a robust Broadway tour scene is wonderful.
What would you tell people who have never been to Tulsa?
I’d say, come to Tulsa and check it out yourself. There are so many cool neighborhoods and areas to explore here. It’s different than all of the other metros in the area. What surprises people is how pretty it is here—we’re hilly and green. Tulsa is a well-kept secret.
What books, music, podcasts or other resources are you enjoying right now?
My favorite books are probably anything about Malcolm Gladwell; I think he’s fascinating. I need to check out the podcast Smartless, which I hear is just incredible.