NEO Philanthropy announced today that Rutledge Simmons will join the organization as Vice President and General Counsel. Simmons is a nationally renowned nonprofit executive who has served for nearly two decades at NeighborWorks America, a large national nonprofit and an essential collaborator with state and federal agencies on affordable housing and consumer protection initiatives.
Simmons most recently served as NeighborWorks America’s executive vice president, general counsel and secretary, where he played a critical role in corporate policy development, board governance, and advising on legal matters, including intellectual property, acquisitions, investments, litigation and employee matters. Simmons helped oversee the engagement of more than 300 staff working with over 240 non-profits across the country through its six district offices.
Simmons joins NEO Philanthropy as the organization celebrates its 40th anniversary as an innovative, staff-intensive philanthropic organization with a track record of making an outsized impact in the pursuit of social justice through collaborative funds, such as the Four Freedoms Fund and the State Infrastructure Fund. In addition, NEO provides operational expertise and long-term leadership development in the building of sustainable, healthy, and impactful social change projects.
“We are thrilled to welcome Rutledge to NEO and I look forward to working with him to advance transformative movements for justice drawing upon his deep experience in making change happen,” said Michele Lord, NEO Philanthropy President.
Simmons holds a B.A. in American History from Harvard University and a J.D. from Columbia University. In addition, Simmons has extensive board service as a former board member of ROC USA, FACETS and Project Place. Simmons also served as Chair of the National Park Foundation’s African American Experience Fund and as a Member of American Bar Association (ABA) Commission on Homelessness and Poverty, and Chair of the ABA Business Law Section’s Committee on Community Economic Development.
“It is an honor and a privilege to join NEO and to work with extraordinary leaders across the country seeking to further social justice,” said Rutledge Simmons.