Robert has approximately 25 years of professional experience working in philanthropy and the nonprofit human and social services sector in various capacities. He has been affectionately referred to as a “nonprofit mechanic” by several clients he’s worked with throughout the years. He is formerly the Principal Consultant for NEX-Impact (www.nex-impact.com), a management consulting group that provides relevant and culturally competent capacity building, coaching, and technical assistance services to nonprofit organizations and helps social investors better engage and support nonprofits.
Prior to NEX-Impact, Robert was the architect and director for the California Community Foundation’s (CCF) landmark BLOOM Initiative, an initiative focused on re-directing Black male youth who have been involved with the L.A. County probation system toward improved employment and educational opportunities. Robert also managed CCF’s grantmaking focused on youth aged out of foster care, low-income older adults and adults with developmental disabilities. Before joining CCF in 2008, he was a project director for a juvenile offender re-entry program at Prototypes and served as a senior program manager for the Permanence and Safety – Model Approach to Partnerships in Parenting (PS-MAPP) training program at The Community College Foundation (TCCF).
Robert received a bachelor’s in sociology from Occidental College and a master’s in social work with a concentration in administration and management from Howard University. Robert is a board member (President/Board Chair) of the Black Cooperative Investment Fund (BCIF), a board member for HathawaySycamores Child and Family Services, serves on the Board of Advisors for Goodwill Southern California, a former program committee member for the African-American Board Leadership Institute (AABLI), a former KCET Community Advisory Board (CAB) member, and former member of Southern California Blacks in Philanthropy (SCBIP).
Robert brings various perspectives to his work: investor, “no box” critical thinker, service provider, concerned citizen, and lifelong L.A. resident. These qualities position him as a unique and compelling voice across various L.A. communities, and beyond.
“As soon as nonprofits run more like traditional business, the more successful they’ll be and the better off our communities will be. Nonprofits in general need to shift their mindset from one of seeking ‘free money’ in the form of grants to one of seeking investments that yield a social return. Because at the end of the day, nonprofits are businesses too! Investments are business transactions that require results.” - Robert Lewis
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