Jennifer Sanders is a leader and thinker in smart cities and regions. She is, currently, the Executive Director of the North Texas Innovation Alliance, a consortium of cross-sector organisations including public, private, civic and academic entities, that works to build and implement a regional smart, connected and resilient strategy for North Texas.
She has been an active executive to bring together nonprofit and civic organisations, academic institutions, and leading corporations on one platform to take a best-minds approach and create smarter, more connected cities.
Jennifer is a BA in Psychology from University of Virginia. She spent more than a decade in top executive levels, including the Director of Communications at the Startup Texas and Consultant at the Institute for Strategic Communications.
She is an enthusiast in public affairs and change management, and has been consulting for clients in finance, energy, technology, and economic development, among others.
Jennifer is also the CEO of InnoCity Partners, a boutique consulting firm that is focussed on supporting organisations across public and private sectors to design, build and execute smart city programs. InnoCity Partners is a certified Women Owned Small Business from WBENC and Historically Underutilised Business (HUB).
She also co-founded the Dallas Innovation Alliance, a public-private partnership dedicated to supporting the design and execution of the City of Dallas' smart cities strategy.
She is actively involved with numerous civic organisations:
- currently serving as past-President of the Mayor’s Star Council,
- Board President of the Suicide & Crisis Center of North Texas,
- Secretary Board of Directors of National Smart Coalitions Partnership (NSCP),
- Board member of Better Blocks Foundation,
- Board Treasurer of the West End Association, and
- an Ambassador for the Dallas Entrepreneur Center (DEC), among others.
Jennifer has received recognition for her leadership in the industry, including the 2019 UN Day Global Leadership Award for advancing the UN Sustainable Development Goals in the category of Goal 9 (Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure).
She was also named in the Dallas Business Journal’s 40 Under 40 and Top Women in Technology, State Scoop’s Top Women in Technology, the TechWeek 100, and the Dallas 500.
Jennifer has been a keynote speaker at global conferences including South by Southwest, Smart Cities Week, IOT World Congress, IMPACT: Cities, and the Smart City Global Congress and Expo in Barcelona.
Jennifer Sanders started her career in public affairs and change management, where she consulted for clients in finance, energy, technology and economic development, working at Spaeth Communications, Institute for Strategic Communications, Burson-Marsteller, Perry Street Communications, and Startup Texas for almost two decades.
In 2015, she co founded the Dallas Innovation Alliance (DIA), a 501c3 public-private partnership dedicated to supporting Dallas’ smart cities strategy. While at the DIA, she has collated a network of over three dozen member organisations and over 20 departments within the City of Dallas. DIA’s Smart Cities Living Lab is the fastest-to-market smart cities initiative in the country.
As the Chief Executive Officer at InnoCity Partners, which she joined in 2019, she was responsible for counselling organisations across the public and private sector to design, build and execute smart city programs. She also offered executive leadership to bring expertise in strategy, coalition-building, innovation in process improvement, citizen engagement, and took projects from concept to implementation.
Jennifer co-founded the North Texas Innovation Alliance, a 501c3 public-private partnership which is the largest such initiative in the U.S., in 2020, with the mission of creating the most connected, smart and resilient region in the country. Currently the NTXIA is focused on cross-jurisdictional issues in financial models, connectivity, mobility, sustainability, data and economic development.
Jennifer shared her views on “COVID-19 and smart city initiatives” in Zprymenow, and on “moving from smart cities to smart regions” in Smart Community Podcast.
Jennifer has been involved in many public-private partnership that were dedicated to support the design and execution of a smart cities plan.
In a recent interview with Dinis Guarda, she said:
“Through my work during all these years, I noticed that technology and development can work in synergy for the betterment of society. Over the past few years, these concepts have really started to converge around into integrated strategies to improve our case studies. That became my great interest personally. I wished I could do this everyday and be a part of the movement.”
To realise this, she has been striving to establish inter-organisational consortiums to build cohesive, aligned, and human-centered smart cities across the US.
She is actively involved with numerous civic organizations, currently serving as past-President of the Mayor’s Star Council, Board President of the Suicide & Crisis Center of North Texas, Board member of Better Block, Board Treasurer of the West End Association, and an Ambassador for the Dallas Entrepreneur Center (DEC), among others.
Recognition and Awards
- Meet the NTXIA | NTXIA
- Jennifer Sanders, NTXIA, And Brandon Branham, Peachtree Corners, Discuss Smart Cities In The Latest Episode Of The Dinis Guarda YouTube Podcast Series | intelligentHQ
- North Texas Civic and Private Organizations Unite for Innovative Collaboration | State Tech Magazine
- North Texas Innovation Alliance to foster collaborative regional growth | SmartcitiesDive
- Smart Community Podcast: The Intersection of Economic Development, People and Technology | NTXIA
- UTDesign Capstone:HOW THIS TEAM IS CHAMPIONING A SAFER DALLAS THROUGH TECHNOLOGY | NTXIA
- Celebrating the Launch of the North Texas Innovation Alliance (NTXIA): Digi.City | NTXIA
- North Texas Innovation Alliance Consortium Launches to Create the Most Connected, Smart and Resilient Region in the Country | NTXIA
- North Texas Innovation Alliance to foster collaborative regional growth: Smart Cities Dive | NTXIA
- Cisco Grants Office: August Funding Updates | NTXIA
- Dallas’ FIFA World Cup 2026 Tech Roundtable Takes the Long View, With a Smart City Focus | Dallas Innovates
- Peachtree Corners and North Texas Innovation Alliance Announce Cross-Regional Partnership to Advance Smart Cities Across the United States | NTXIA
- StateTech Magazine: North Texas Civic and Private Organizations Unite for Innovative Collaboration | NTXIA
- A PARTNERSHIP FOR THE FUTURE OF DALLAS | Dallas Innovation Alliance
- Peachtree Corners and North Texas Innovation Alliance Announce Cross-Regional Partnership to Advance Smart Cities Across the United States | PRNewswire
- Smart Community Podcast E170 Moving from Smart Cities to Smart Regions, with Jennifer Sanders | My Smart Community YouTube
- The North Texas Innovation Alliance’s mission is to create the most connected, smart, and resilient region in the country | NTXIA
- Zpryme Now: Covid-19 and Smart City Initiatives | zpryme