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Who We Are

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Clif Harald, Principal

Clif Harald founded First Flatiron Consulting (FFC) to serve economic development organizations, consulting firms with economic development clientele, educational institutions, professional associations, and entrepreneurs.

Clif’s expertise draws on a career of achievement in economic development and in private industry. He conceived and co-founded the Boulder Economic Council, a cross-industry leadership group of business and community executives dedicated to Boulder’s economic vitality. As Executive Director of the BEC, Clif worked on corporate expansions and relocations valued in the hundreds of millions of dollars, and on the launch and growth of hundreds of startups and small businesses.  Clif also held leadership positions with the Broomfield (Colorado) Economic Development Corp., the Longmont EDC, and the Metro Denver EDC.

In the private sector, Clif was the Colorado Public Affairs Manager for Sun Microsystems, where he led a multimillion-dollar corporate social responsibility program.  He also held leadership roles in the financial services industry and with economic consulting firms.

A native of Colorado, Clif has been a part of Boulder’s evolution from a 1970’s college town to today’s regional employment center with one of the highest concentrations of jobs in the nation and one of the most productive startup ecosystems in the world.

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Deb Parsons, Prinicipal

Deb Parsons is an accomplished business professional who brings extensive marketing, partner development, and project management experience to First Flatiron Consulting. Her skills and experience were acquired from leadership positions with companies ranging from startups to global corporations. At FFC, Deb is responsible for managing client engagements. She plays an integral role in organizing and managing client relationships, including ongoing communications on project progress and deliverables.

Deb is well-versed in all forms of marketing communications, media channels, and partner alliance programs.  She applies her expertise in these and other areas to ensure that project outcomes are positioned to amplify a community’s unique attributes and enhance its image.

Deb’s background includes relationship marketing for a commercial real estate services firm, management of all marketing and communications for a Boulder speech recognition startup, and competitive positioning and product launch at StorageTek Corp. Deb was recruited by EMC Corp., a Boston IT storage company acquired by Dell, to drive revenue for its file archiving software division. She leveraged her success in that role to develop and manage a cutting-edge alliance program for EMC’s largest technology partners.

Deb has lived and worked in Boulder for four decades. She relishes the vibrant Boulder community and the unique opportunities for business, health, and recreation it provides. 

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