Leigh-Ann A. Buchanan, Esq. is the founding Executive Director of Venture Café Miami. She has led the organization to exponential growth and impact to connect 50,000 innovators and establish 1000+ content partnerships with national and global organizations.
Leigh-Ann is a writer, facilitator and frequent speaker on strategies for inclusive innovation and building equitable entrepreneurial ecosystems. She has worked with Fortune 500 companies and technology leaders like Google, Facebook, Delta Airlines, P&G Ventures, AirBnB, HSBC and UBS.
Previously, she served as legal counsel to entrepreneurs, startups and multinational corporations in a wide variety of complex business litigation matters and commercial disputes.
Leigh-Ann's work in the social innovation sector focuses on the intersection of racial equity and innovation. She is the founder of the Nyah Project, an exclusive fellowship which develops purposeful youth leaders of color from underserved communities through transformative experiences abroad. As the former chair of the American Bar Association’s Coalition on Racial & Ethnic Justice, she created the ABA JusticeHack, a national series of interdisciplinary hackathons designed to address tensions points between law enforcement and communities of color.
She has been recognized as one of the Most Influential Black Business Leaders (2019); Florida Influencer (2019, 2018); one of Miami’s 50 Most Powerful and Influential Black Business Leaders (2019); Harvard Business School Young American Leader (2018); Miami Fellow (2017); Black Enterprise Magazine, Miami Tech Trailblazer (2017); Dade County Bar Association, Woman on the Rise Award (2017); Legacy Magazine, Under 40 Achiever (2017); Miami Girls Foundation (2017); Miami Dade Chamber Young Innovator of the Year (2016); Aspen Institute’s National Working Group on Inclusive Innovation (2016); American Bar Association Top 40 Young Lawyers (2016); Bethune Cookman University, 40 Under 40 (2016); Daily Business Review, Rising Star (2015); Greater Miami-Dade Chamber of Commerce, HYPE Award finalist (2014); National Bar Association Women Lawyers Division Rising Star Award (2013); and South Florida’s 40 Under 40 Black Leaders (2013).