Paula Vasquez Alzate joined McKnight in October 2020 and is currently the program and grants associate for Vibrant & Equitable Communities with the Grants & Program Operations department. In this role, Paula supports all aspects of the grantmaking process for Vibrant & Equitable Communities grantee partners. Paula is passionate about developing internal grantmaking tools and processes that foster ongoing learning, while keeping equity at the core of her and the Foundation’s work.

During her tenure, Paula has provided administrative and operations support to the Vibrant & Equitable Communities and Arts & Culture programs, and assisted with the Lake Street Alignment project, grantmaking redesign effort, and the Ford ACT initiative. She has dedicated her career to working with underrepresented communities. Equity is at the core of her work as she strives to support systems change.

Prior to McKnight, Paula worked at The Cowles Center as an education and community engagement coordinator and at Northrop as a development intern (both organizations are McKnight grantees). She supports the dance company Black Label Movement as a board member and is a former company mover.

She holds a bachelor of fine arts degree in dance from the University of Minnesota and is currently pursuing an MBA at Carlson School of Management. Paula was born and raised in Colombia and moved to the United States in 2014. She has lived in New York City and Miami and currently resides in Minneapolis.