Rochelle Haynes

Managing Director, What Works Cities

Rochelle’s multi-sector career has a common thread of focusing on policies and programs that seek to identify solutions to ending the cycle of poverty in vulnerable communities. She has had the privilege to serve individuals, families, and children through work in government, nonprofit and philanthropic sectors with an expertise in anti-poverty programs that span from birth to adulthood.

Rochelle began her career at the United Spinal Association working on legislation in the areas of affordable, accessible housing for people with disabilities. While her career in New York City government extends from affordable housing to social services where she worked to guide policies and improve operations for public benefit programs including a tenure as Chief of Staff at NYC’s Department of Homeless Services. As Chief of Staff, she secured over $20M in funding to provide additional social support services to families experiencing homelessness. After 10 years in municipal government, Rochelle joined 100 Resilient Cities -Rockefeller Foundation, where she led global operations and strategy for the City Practice Management team and was responsible for the delivery of the 100RC core program which included leveraging global partnerships and practices to ensure successful implementation. In her most recent role, she served as Vice President of the US Social Impact team at Sesame Workshop, where she developed and led the scaling strategy of the Sesame Street in Communities initiative which expanded from 3 to 13 cities and regions serving over 75,000 vulnerable kids and families with resources to foster healthy development. Rochelle also works as an independent consultant with a specialty in social impact, strategic planning, policy, and government affairs where she advises on anti-poverty and economic mobility policies, programs, and initiatives.

Rochelle earned dual Masters’ degrees in Public Affairs and Urban Planning from Princeton University as well as a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from the University at Albany. She currently resides as a Board Member of the University at Albany’s Rockefeller College of Public Affairs & Policy and as an Advisory Council Member of the School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University.