Press Release

Urban Institute Welcomes Todd Greene as Executive Director of WorkRise

Contact:  Archana Pyati, or (202) 261-5614

WASHINGTON, DC, October 30, 2020— Todd Greene will join the Urban Institute on January 4, 2021, as institute fellow and executive director of WorkRise, a new research-to-action network on jobs, workers, and mobility focused on rebuilding a more equitable and resilient labor market. Greene will guide WorkRise’s strategic vision and direction and its research agenda, capitalizing on the diverse perspectives, sectors, and disciplines represented by members of  WorkRise’s Leadership Board, institutional partners, and staff.

Greene is currently executive director of the Atlanta University Center Consortium Inc. (AUCC), the nation’s oldest and largest consortium of historically Black colleges and universities. In this role, he leads efforts on enhancing education opportunities for students, forging impactful research, catalyzing a broad economic development agenda, and more.

Before AUCC, Greene was vice president in the research division of the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta. During his tenure, Greene led the economic and community development department, founded and led the Federal Reserve System’s Human Capital/Workforce Development Working Group, as well as oversaw the creation of the Federal Reserve Center for Workforce and Economic Opportunity.

“Inequality is a fundamental feature of work in the United States, reflecting a host of structural disadvantages and discriminatory practices. And work that leads to genuine opportunity is far too rare. In the aftermath of the pandemic, these barriers are even higher.  Recovery is not simply about rebuilding, but about reimagining a more equitable and resilient labor market that offers economic mobility for workers,” said Sarah Rosen Wartell, president of the Urban Institute. “Much of Todd’s illustrious career has been dedicated to understanding the labor market we have and building a better one, taking insights from evidence to put into practice. His experience is perfectly aligned with the goals of WorkRise and we feel so very fortunate to have him direct the collaborative.”

Hosted by Urban Institute, WorkRise is a national platform for identifying, testing, and sharing bold ideas for transforming the labor market. WorkRise funds research on promising practices, policies, and programs underway across the country as well as foundational research on labor market trends with the aim of strengthening employers, informing policymaking and practices, and providing genuine economic mobility and security for workers—especially Black workers and workers of color, women, and young people, groups that have faced systemic barriers to opportunity.

WorkRise collaborates with and builds upon the work of a diverse network of stakeholders, including leading researchers and research institutions, large and small employers, industry networks, worker advocates and labor organizers, workforce development and human services practitioners, and federal, state, and local policymakers. These partnerships allow WorkRise to give decisionmakers the evidence and solutions they need to enact and scale meaningful and durable change.

“I am inspired by WorkRise’s clear purpose to help shape a more equitable, resilient labor market. For far too long, America’s low-wage workers have faced obstacles keeping them from economic mobility and career advancement,” said Greene. “I am looking forward to building WorkRise as a powerhouse for today’s leaders so we can turn research into real action for change.”

WorkRise’s founding funders are the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the Mastercard Impact Fund administered by the Mastercard Center for Inclusive Growth. WorkRise also receives support from the Walmart Foundation, the Cognizant U.S. Foundation, The James Irvine Foundation, The Annie E. Casey Foundation, and General Motors.

The nonprofit Urban Institute is a leading research organization dedicated to developing evidence-based insights that improve people’s lives and strengthen communities. For 50 years, Urban has been the trusted source for rigorous analysis of complex social and economic issues; strategic advice to policymakers, philanthropists, and practitioners; and new, promising ideas that expand opportunities for all. Our work inspires effective decisions that advance fairness and enhance the well-being of people and places.