Richard Rivera

Richard Rivera has spent 30 years in education, starting off as a middle school teacher. He spent half of his career creating and leading college access and retention programs at Bank Street College of Education and Kingsborough Community College. He has spent the last 5 years working for non-profit organizations developing work-based learning programs.

Prior to joining I Have a Dream Foundation as Chief Program Office, Richard worked on two exciting challenges. For the past year and half he has been a part-time consultant with CareerWiseNYC developing a post-secondary pathway at CUNY for apprentice students to earn up to 30 college credits over the three-year program and has also helped developed and launched The Last Mile Talent Development initiative, a Cloud Computing Academy, which trains college students and recent graduates living in under-resourced communities and places them with employers.

Before he transitioned to consulting, he was a founding member at HERE TO HERE, a Bronx-based nonprofit that unites employers, educators, and community-based organizations to connect young people to family-sustaining careers and create a thriving and inclusive economy. During his time at HERE to HERE, he placed over 1,100 Bronx high school students in summer career exploration programs and internships. He also worked with the Bronx Borough President and 20 employers to create the Bronx Private Industry Council to hired over 300 summer interns. 

Prior to joining HERE TO HERE, Richard was the Associate Director of Educational Programs at Goddard Riverside Community Center. He managed a youth department of 50 staff with a budget of $4.5 million that served over 2,000 youth and oversaw the Options Institute – a leader in providing professional development on college access to NYC Department of Education and CBO staff.  

In 2007, Richard joined Kingsborough Community College as the founding Director of the Accelerated Study in Associate Programs (ASAP) a retention and graduation program where participant’s graduate rate (56%) was more than double the national average graduation rate of community colleges (23%).  

In 2000, Richard founded the Institute for Leadership Excellence and Academic Development (I-LEAD) Program at Bank Street College, a leadership and college access program. During his tenure, 98% of all students attended college and raised over $4.2 million dollars. 

Since 2002, Richard has periodically been an adjunct professor at Bank Street College (Current Issues in Urban Education), Bronx Community College (American Government) and recently at NYU School of Professional Studies (Leadership for a Changing World).  

Richard is a graduate of Syracuse University and holds a master’s degree in Urban Affairs from Hunter College and a second in Public Administration from Baruch College.