Rhonnel Sotelo

Executive Director

RS Kid PictureMy favorite childhood book that I read over (and over and over and over) was:  Sadly, I don’t have a favorite childhood book. I wasn’t much of a reader as a child and only reached 3rd grade reading proficiency in the 8th grade. Thanks to several caring high school teachers and two amazing University of California, Los Angeles English professors, I turned it around later in life. So while I don’t have any favorite childhood books to share, I offer three titles that I revisit over and over again: The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand, Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger, and Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll.

My hope for Oakland students is: The same as I have for my own daughters. That they have MANY caring adults in their lives who prepare them for the world’s opportunities, and help them find their passion and unrelentingly pursue their dreams.

Rhonnel joined the Rogers Family Foundation in April 2013 as the Foundation’s Chief Strategy Officer. Since June 2014, he has served as the Executive Director, taking on responsibility for the executive management of the Foundation’s operations and grantmaking. Rhonnel also holds principal accountability for strategy and initiative implementation, maintains key community relationships, and collaborates closely with the Foundation’s Chief Executive Officer.

Previously, Rhonnel served as the Chief Operating Officer and Vice President for Program & Operations for the Stuart Foundation where he oversaw program strategy, grants management, and operations. His 25 years of experience also includes coordinating and managing The San Francisco Foundation’s West Oakland Initiative and owning and operating Urban Works, an urban planning and design firm focused on neighborhood planning and livable communities in California and the Pacific Northwest. Rhonnel holds a Master of Arts in Urban Planning and a Bachelor of Arts in English, both from the University of California, Los Angeles. He is a member of The San Francisco Foundation’s Koshland Committee for Civic Unity and serves on the Board of Directors for the Oakland Public Education Fund. He lives in Oakland with his wife Chris and their daughter, Kate. Their older daughter Quin is a proud Oakland public school graduate and currently studies at the University of the Arts London.

Email: rsotelo@rogersfoundation.org

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