Robby Rodriguez joined McKnight in April 2023 as a senior advisor to our Midwest Climate & Energy and Vibrant & Equitable Communities programs, offering support around strategy development, portfolio construction and management, and program implementation, with a particular focus on our Strengthening Democratic Participation work.
Robby is a philanthropy and nonprofit advisor and provides consulting services related to strategy and executive coaching. He started his career as a community organizer, working for workers’ and voting rights, youth development, corporate accountability, environmental justice, and immigrant and Indigenous rights. During his six years as the Executive Director of the Albuquerque-based SouthWest Organizing Project (SWOP), Robby helped the organization achieve key policy changes related to economic development and environmental protection at the state and local level. During this time, he co-authored a book on generational change in the nonprofit sector titled, Working Across Generations: Defining The Future of Non Profit Leadership (Jossey Bass, 2008).
Robby has also been a part of national and international social movements linked to ending racial discrimination and economic inequality. He represented the United States at the United Nations World Conference Against Racism in Durban, South Africa where he documented and testified on issues of environmental racism in the United States and abroad. He also served on the national planning committee for the United States Social Forums held in Atlanta and Detroit. For over ten years, Robby worked at two of the largest private foundations in the U.S., and was on teams responsible for stewarding nearly $200 million in philanthropic dollars to help low income communities and communities of color build power for racial and gender equity and social, environmental, and economic justice.
Robby holds a bachelor’s degree in Sociology from Cornell University and an MBA from the University of New Mexico, and serves on the boards of Greenpeace USA and New Mexico Voices for Children.