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Amy Cortese - . Greater New York City Area, NY, US

Amy Cortese

Journalist & Author of Locavesting

Greater New York City Area, NY, UNITED STATES

Locavesting Expert



Amy Cortese wrote the book, literally, on local investing. An award-winning journalist known for spotting trends, she coined the term "locavesting" to describe the groundswell of citizen finance and community investment she saw taking place in the wake of the financial crisis. As a speaker, Amy lays bare the failings of the global financial system, which has abandoned the Main Street economy and the nation's true job creators, and offers a glimpse at a compelling alternative taking shape, from Slow Money to crowdfunding to local stock exchanges. Using a mix of real life examples and startling statistics, Amy demonstrates how a small shift in our investments to locally-owned businesses can have an outsize impact on the economy. Locavesting is more than a call to rethink the way we invest; it is a prescription for rebuilding the economy, one community at a time.

Nobel Laureate Joseph Stiglitz calls Locavesting "an inspiring look at what local businesses can achieve." Community crowdfunding pioneer and Smallknot founder Jay Lee says: “If Michael Pollan changed the way you think about food, let Amy Cortese change the way you think about finance.”

Amy is a longtime contributor to the New York Times, as well as other publications, and was an editor at Business Week. Locavesting was published by John Wiley & Sons in June 2011, and was named a "Best Business Book of 2011." Amy has been featured in national and regional media, including MSNBC, Brian Lehrer TV, NPR's Leonard Lopate show, The Wall Street Journal, Fast Company, Salon, Reuters and other outlets.

Industry Expertise (3)


VC and Private Equity

Media - Print

Areas of Expertise (3)

Economic Development

Community Revitalization


Accomplishments (2)

Author of Locavesting (professional)


My groundbreaking book.

Cash Mob Organizer (personal)


I believe in practicing what I preach, so when I heard about the "cash mob" phenomenon, I organized the very first cash mobs in Brooklyn (and greater NYC). Our cash mobs have boosted local businesses including the Community Bookstore and By Brooklyn, brought together people from all over NYC, and raised awareness about the importance of buying local. We also garnered media coverage from the NBC Nightly News, WPIX Channel 11, the Wall Street Journal and The Atlantic Cities web site.

Education (1)

Northeastern University: Bachelor of Science

Testimonials (1)

Jay Lee, Founder, |

“If Michael Pollan changed the way you think about food, let Amy Cortese change the way you think about finance.”

Event Appearances (4)


TEDx Maui  Maui



Opening Plenary, National Main Streets Conference  Baltimore, MD



The Big Disruption  St. Louis, MO


Locavesting: Local Investing for Impact

Springboard Innovation's Re:Forum  Portland, OR


Sample Talks (1)

How Local Investing Can Rebuild the Economy

Small businesses create 2 out of every 3 jobs in the U.S. and account for half of private GDP. So why are we starving these vital enterprises? Amy looks at the massive misallocation of capital in this country and shows how just a small shift of investment dollars to small, locally owned business can have a huge impact. She brings the data to life with engaging examples of local investing from Brooklyn, NY to Port Townsend, WA.


  • Keynote
  • Moderator
  • Panelist
  • Author Appearance


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