Henry L. Fernandez coordinates USA Funds® efforts that reach state-government policymakers, Hispanic Members of Congress, and other stakeholder groups. From 2004-2008, he was responsible for the $ 16.6 million that USA Funds invests annually in philanthropic programs that advance its nonprofit mission to help Americans prepare for, gain access to and successfully complete higher education. These initiatives include USA Funds’ national scholarship program, support to other scholarship-providing organizations, outreach programs such as USA Funds Unlock the Future® for middle-school students and their families, and other endeavors that help families scale barriers to higher education.
Fernandez has more than 25 years of experience in education. Prior to becoming USA Funds’ Executive Director, scholarships, outreach and philanthropy in 2004, he was a program director for Lumina Foundation for Education. His previous experience also includes work in corporate philanthropy and service as director of the Peace Corps Fellows Program, as well as work as program administrator for New York’s Teachers College, Columbia University. Earlier in his career, he served as an elementary-school principal and teacher. Fernandez received a doctoral degree in education and three master’s degrees from Teachers College, Columbia University. He completed his undergraduate studies at Queens College of the City University of New York. Fernandez has served on a number of boards, including those for the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials Educational Fund, Grantmakers for Education, Advocates for Youth and Metropolitan School District of Lawrence Township, Ind.