Rickell Howard Smith Joins Greater Cincinnati Foundation as Director of Community Strategies

Greater Cincinnati Foundation (GCF) is pleased to announce the hiring of Rickell Howard Smith, J.D., as Director of Community Strategies. Working closely with Harold Brown, GCF’s Vice President of Community Strategies, she will be responsible for developing and implementing strategies for inclusive and active community engagement, serving as a knowledge resource both internally and in the community, and overseeing alignment of GCF’s community strategies staff structure to best implement its strategic grantmaking framework.

“We are thrilled to have Rickell join GCF and our community strategies team in particular,” Brown says. “Rickell’s extensive experience working on equity issues in our community, combined with her outstanding management and leadership skills, will be a huge asset to GCF and our many donors and partners. This is a very exciting time at GCF, and we are very pleased that Rickell will be a major contributor to our efforts going forward.”

Smith brings more than 12 years of experience as a policy advocate and nonprofit director to her new role. Prior to joining GCF, she served as the Ohio Litigation and Policy Director at Children’s Law Center, Inc., where she developed policy advocacy plans to improve services to children at the local, state and national level; managed special projects providing legal support to foster and homeless youth; and litigated civil rights lawsuits focused on improving services to children ranging from healthcare and education to disability rights and racial disparities.

Additionally, Smith served as the Director of the Human Rights in Prison Litigation Project at the Ohio Justice & Policy Center and as a staff attorney at the Legal Aid Society of Southwest Ohio. She recently participated as a Leadership Fellow in a year-long leadership development program for child advocates at the Youth Justice Leadership Institute and currently serves on the boards of Planned Parenthood of Southwest Ohio and Lighthouse Community School. She is a graduate of Temple University Beasley School of Law and Howard University