As Portfolio Lead, Vanessa is responsible for helping the Built for Zero team integrate equity goals and measures into all projects, co-designing and testing new equity interventions in communities using quality improvement processes, capturing and disseminating what works to improve our collective community race equity work over time by equipping the team to support Built for Zero communities in their pursuit of racially equitable homelessness response systems as measured by the Built for Zero Equitable Homeless Response System Indicators framework.
Before coming to Community Solutions, Vanessa worked as a strategy consultant assisting clients with strategic action planning, process design, organizational, programmatic and fund development, meeting design and facilitation and community relationship building. Her previous role as the chief of staff for a city council member allowed her to focus on broader policy issues to improve the quality of life for the city’s children and families, especially those who are most marginalized. Her work included leading on a comprehensive eviction prevention strategy and a balanced development approach to promote housing security and the preservation of and expanded availability of quality affordable housing. Vanessa graduated Summa Cum Laude with a Ph.D. in Educational Studies & Policy. She also hold a Master’s in Business Administration and a B.S. in Criminal Justice. She is active as a 2nd Vice President with her local NAACP chapter and on the Board of Cincinnati Promise Forward whose mission is to advocate for and empower early childhood education so that every child gets a strong start. She is the doting mother of five children, including triplets, and four granddaughters.
- LOVES: Systems thinking
- HATES: Redundancy
- SUPERPOWER: Tenacity