Ricky Hernandez (Tucson 2018)
1. Can you please describe your work and how public policy impacts how you manage your organization?
I currently oversee the financial operations of University of Arizona’s investment in the Alumni & Development program. I have worked in public finance for over 18 years in Arizona—in both K-12 and higher education. Because of the state’s lack of investments in higher education, the University of Arizona has an increasing reliance on the generosity of donors and private investments to support our mission as Arizona’s land grant university. My roles have always required me to be a strong steward and advocate for the resources that support my organizations’ mission to educate Arizona’s students.
2. How has the Fellows Network been useful to you?
The Fellows Network allows me to seek new opportunities for supporting not only my own work, but the work of other Fellows. Many of our Fellows are also University of Arizona alumni and their professional expertise and friendship can create new networks to do good work for Arizona.
3. What do you see as potential opportunities strengthening civic health in Arizona?
Voting, volunteering, advocating for others who can’t for themselves, and agreeing to disagree with your neighbor. Don’t discount each other’s beliefs, teach our kids that love for Arizona and America does not mean having to always agree with them, embrace each and every difference that makes us uniquely Arizona. We all have a responsibility to engage in what is happening in our communities.
If you missed a Fellows Spotlight, you can view them on the Arizona Center for Civic Leadership website now.