This week our guest is Brian Steele, CEO and Executive Director of City Help - also known as the Phoenix Dream Center - a nonprofit organization serving several populations we’ll discuss in the show, including victims of human trafficking. Brian has been with the Dream Center since its start in 2007 and oversees campuses across the state which house 800 people every night.
We appreciate Brian’s willingness to share his story - both the highs and lows. Additionally, Brian provides some incredible insights into building organizations and employing quality control measures to both help serve the community and grow the organization more effectively.
Our guest this week is Tom Espinoza, President and CEO of Raza Development Fund (RDF). Tom has over 45 years of experience that span the breadth of the public, private sector, and nonprofit spectrum. In 1998, he co-founded RDF; and is responsible for the overall strategy, performance, and management of the fund, which has grown into the largest Latino CDFI in the country.
Prior to founding RDF, Tom worked at UnidosUS (formally the National Council of La Raza), where he led the Office of Technical Assistance and Constituency Support. Additionally, he was the President & Chief Executive Officer of Chicanos Por La Causa where he provided capacity development during its early years, established funding strategies for various social, real estate community development projects, and advocated for the Latino community.
In our conversation, Tom shares his story and provides insights on how to build a quality team, how to balance activism and development, maintaining a healthy tension within an organization, thinking big, and everything in-between.