Was a senior member of the Living Cities team, Arlene assumed a complex portfolio of responsibilities as the Director of Partnerships and External Affairs. In this position overlooked Living Cities’ knowledge and evaluation work, lead the organization’s external relationships, communications and public relations, and support Living Cities members to better align their programmatic investments for greater social impact.
Before joining Living Cities, Arlene Rodriguez directed the Environment program for The San Francisco Foundation for eight years. The program aims to promote environmentally sustainable practices by addressing urban and natural environmental issues that focus on climate change, equitable growth and development, transit and transportation policy, the reduction of toxins, and advancing environmental health and justice for the San Francisco Bay Area. In addition, Arlene was also the Director of the Foundation’s Organizational Sustainability and Leadership Development programs providing oversight to various foundation-led initiatives building community leadership and organizational resilience with nonprofits across the Bay Area.
Ms. Rodriguez has extensive experience in organizational development, program planning, community development, and the environmental field. She served as senior program officer for the environment at the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, was the director of community programs and founding director of the Crissy Field Environmental Center with Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy, and served as Urban Program Director for the Western Region of The Trust for Public Land. She currently serves on the board of directors for numerous organizations: she is a trustee, and served as past president for the Board of the Funders Network for Smart Growth and Livable Communities; and also serves on the boards of The Health and Environmental Funders Network; and Courtney Foundation. In the past, Ms. Rodriguez served on the boards of the San Francisco Education Fund and the Marine Mammal Center, and acted as a commissioner for the City and County of San Francisco Department on the Environment. Ms. Rodriguez has a Bachelors of Science in Electrical Engineering from the University of Illinois. She also holds a Bachelors of Science in Landscape Horticulture and completed a training Masters’ level training in Landscape Architecture, with a minor in Urban Planning, at North Carolina State University.