Jessica Dalesandro Mindnich, Ph.D.
Director, Strategic Learning and Evaluation
Why do you do what you do?
As a descendant of migrant farm workers, I grew up with a deep awareness of and appreciation for the hopes and dreams my family had for me. Despite growing up with a father who spent my life in and out of prison and being raised by a single mom who sometimes needed to work two or three jobs to make ends meet, I grew up believing in opportunity. I also grew up with a keen awareness that access to opportunity was not equal. Because of this, I have committed my academic and professional life to creating opportunities for others.
What drew you to the foundation?
Working here at this time in our country’s history is truly a privilege. The courageousness and humility with which the foundation is advancing racial equity makes me so proud to work here. I am inspired every day by my colleagues, our grantee and community partners, board members and donors. I take great solace in being part of the change I want to see.
How would you describe your role?
I am responsible for staff learning and skill building, the development of an accountability framework, and building out our data and evaluation infrastructure so that we are empowered to make a measurable difference in advancing racial equity and economic inclusion within the Bay Area.
Are you active in any volunteer activities?
I regularly volunteer within my community, most typically within my local school district but I have also volunteered with my local soccer and rotary club. One of my most memorable experiences was volunteering as a social media reporter for a Black Girls Codes event.