Carmen Rojas

President and CEO, Marguerite Casey Foundation

Dr. Carmen Rojas is the president and CEO of the Marguerite Casey Foundation. Prior to joining Marguerite Casey Foundation, Dr. Carmen Rojas was the Co-Founder and former CEO of The Workers Lab, an innovation lab that invests in entrepreneurs, community organizers, and government leaders to create replicable and revenue-generating solutions that improve conditions for low-wage workers. For more than 20 years, Carmen has worked with foundations, financial institutions, and nonprofits to improve the lives of working people across the United States.

Prior to building The Workers Lab, Carmen was the Acting Director of Collective Impact at Living Cities. She supported 22 of the largest foundations and financial institutions in the world to invest in improving economic opportunity for low-income people by supporting projects in the fields of economic and workforce development, energy efficiency, and asset building. From 2008 to 2011, Carmen was the Director of Strategic Programs at the Mitchell Kapor Foundation, where she oversaw the foundation’s Green Access and Civic Engagement programs. Alongside her work at the foundation, Carmen also taught in the Department of City and Regional Planning at the University of California, Berkeley. Prior to this, Carmen was the Coordinator of the San Francisco Redevelopment Agency’s Taskforce on African American Out-Migration to address African American displacement from the city.

Carmen currently sits on the boards of the Workers Benefit Fund, General Service Foundation, Blue Ridge Labs, Certification Associates, and on the Community Advisory Council for the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.

Carmen holds a Ph.D. in City and Regional Planning from the University of California, Berkeley and was a Fulbright Scholar in 2007.

Contributions

Voices from the Field

After a Year Like No Other, Three Foundation Leaders Talk About What Changed and What Comes Next

Posted on May 26, 2021 by David Callahan, James Canales, Crystal Hayling, Carmen Rojas

This article was originally published by Inside Philanthropy and is re-posted here with permission. The transcribed conversation comes from a plenary session at NCFP’s 2021 CEO Retreat.  How well philanthropy responded to the events of the past 14 months—a period of so much trauma and suffering—is a topic sure to be debated for many years to come. And, of course,… Read More

Family Foundation CEO Retreat

Posted on February 12, 2021 by Betsy Erickson, Janine Mason, Michael Smith, Tina Runyan, Mayor Eric Garcetti, Bari Katz, Rob Reich, Shaady Salehi, Carmen Rojas, Diana Scearce

The role of a family foundation CEO is unique, often bridging generations of family members, community leaders, staff, advisors, and partners. Expectations can be challenging to meet and boundaries are sometimes vague and ever-changing. Success in this role requires a cadre of specialized leadership skills, particularly in these divisive and dynamic times. This 3-day virtual retreat, designed for both new… Read More
Featured Article

Philanthropy in the Time of COVID-19

Posted on April 17, 2020 by Carmen Rojas

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Editor’s Note: This article was originally published here and is re-posted with permission. What are we going to do to shift the balance of power & resources? Over the last couple of weeks, foundations and donors have made proclamations about how this crisis will change their giving practice. Many have tried to prove how the crisis has been a turning… Read More