Todd Greene to Chair Heldrich Center National Advisory Board

Todd Greene, Executive Director of WorkRise and Institute Fellow at the Urban Institute, has agreed to chair the Heldrich Center’s National Advisory Board, succeeding Laurence M. Downes.

Prior to joining the Urban Institute, Todd was the Executive Director of the Atlanta University Center Consortium (AUCC), the world’s oldest and largest consortium of historically Black colleges and universities. Before leading AUCC, Todd was Vice President of the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta where he led the economic and community development department. He also founded and led the Federal Reserve System’s Human Capital and Workforce Department Working Group. Todd has also been a member of the general faculty at the Georgia Institute of Technology. He earned his undergraduate degree from Harvard University and Master’s degrees from Washington University and Georgia State University.

Todd, who joined the center’s National Advisory Board in 2020, has worked closely with the Heldrich Center for nearly a decade. During his tenure at the Federal Reserve Bank, he collaborated with the Heldrich Center on two major initiatives, Transforming U.S. Workforce Development Policies for the 21st Century and Investing in America’s Workforce: Improving Outcomes for Workers and Employers. Those initiatives produced major national conferences, two edited books, and numerous research publications and webinars.

“Larry has been a strong leader and I am grateful to follow the example he set as chair,” said Mr. Greene. “For decades, the exceptional work of the Heldrich Center has had a meaningful impact on important workforce development and related policies and programs across the nation. Given the current challenges and opportunities we face in developing a more equitable labor market, the evidence and insights produced by the center have never been more important. As the incoming chair of the Heldrich Center’s National Advisory Board, I look forward to working with my fellow board members in supporting the center’s continued success.”

Carl Van Horn, Ph.D., Distinguished Professor and Director of the Heldrich Center, said, “My colleagues and I are thrilled that Todd will chair the Heldrich Center’s National Advisory Board. A highly accomplished and widely respected national leader in workforce and economic development, Todd knows what is required to translate evidence-based research into effective policy and practice. We share his commitment to building a more equitable labor market that provides economic mobility for groups that face systemic barriers, including Black workers, people of color, and women.”

Laurence Downes, who has served on the center’s National Advisory Board since 2004, succeeded founding board chair John J. Heldrich in 2014. Mr. Downes is retired Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer of New Jersey Resources and its principal subsidiary, New Jersey Natural Gas. His many public service positions include chairing the New Jersey Commission on Higher Education, the Drumthwacket Foundation, and the New Jersey Economic Development Authority.

“It has been a sincere honor for me to be part of the Heldrich team over the past 17 years,” Mr. Downes said. “In addition to their fine work in the area of research, the dedicated efforts of the women and men of the Heldrich Center have made a substantial difference in the lives of many people. I’m grateful to Carl for the opportunity he has given me and am confident that Todd will be a strong leader of the board.”

Dr. Van Horn commented, “The faculty and staff of the Heldrich Center are immensely grateful to Larry for his unwavering dedication and support of the center. His leadership and vision helped the center to raise significant funding for its research projects and technical assistance programs, including the New Start Career Network. As chair, Larry worked closely with the board and center staff to craft a strategic plan that builds on the center’s accomplishments and positions it to continue to be a leader in workforce development research in New Jersey and the United States.”