Nicholas J. Bankston
About Councilmember Nick Bankston
Councilmember Nick Bankston is a dedicated public servant and thoughtful leader on issues facing Columbus neighborhoods. At City Council, Councilmember Bankston chairs the Economic Development, Small & Minority Business, and Technology committees. A proud graduate of East High School and The Ohio State University and a lifelong resident of Columbus, Councilmember Bankston is a champion for the people of Columbus and is determined to make an impact in his community.
Councilmember Bankston, a driving force in economic development, quickly left an enduring impact on the city’s economic development strategy with the passage of Ordinance 3221-2022 which required businesses that received tax incentives from the city to pay the jobs associated with the incentive at least $20 per hour. This pivotal change further solidified Columbus City Council's steadfast commitment to fostering widespread economic prosperity through the Job Creation Incentive Program.
Council Member Bankston also played a key role in establishing the collaboration between the Columbus Chamber of Commerce and the Columbus Urban League by issuing significant financial support for the Urban Business Connection Program, a program that provides Black businesses with free Columbus Chamber of Commerce Memberships. Seeing the program’s immense success during its pilot year, Councilmember Bankston allocated $175,000 in 2022, expanding the number of black-owned businesses served to 75. Undeterred in his commitment, Bankston further allocated $200,000 in 2023, reaching an impressive milestone of 100 businesses served.
As chair of the Small and Minority Business Committee, Council Member Bankston spearheaded the Small Business Recovery Fund, resulting in $8,410,000 in grants awarded to 1,295 small businesses fighting to survive the pandemic. Notably, 61% of these businesses were in low to moderate-income census tracts, highlighting Bankston's dedication to empowering disadvantaged communities. Impressively, 70% of the recipients were minority-owned enterprises, while 37% were woman-owned. This invaluable support generated an astounding economic and social value of $24.4 million, contributing to the growth and vitality of the businesses, their communities, and the lives of their employees.
Demonstrating his unwavering dedication to promoting diversity and inclusion, Council Member Bankston introduced an essential measure on February 6th, 2023, through resolution 0027X-2023. This innovative change to the internal city process allowed the public to readily view which ordinances on the council’s meeting agenda contain city contracts involving minority vendor participation. By improving the visibility of the city's efforts in minority vendor procurement, Bankston effectively elevated the impact and recognition of this work fostering transparency and accountability.
Councilmember Bankston is married to his beautiful and accomplished wife Habiba K. Bankston; they reside in Northeast Columbus with their son Xavier Kamal Bankston in the McCutcheon Crossing neighborhood.