Carmen Rojas knows the reality of the American dream. Her parents both
immigrated to San Francisco from South America in the late 1960’s and
slowly worked their way up the ladder. Working her way through school to
earn her PhD and being a longtime social justice advocate, she also knows
the rarity of the American dream, and how difficult conditions can be for
low-wage workers. Over the past 15 years, Rojas has dedicated herself to
advocate for worker’s rights. She has championed a wide range of social
justice issues including community development and racial inclusion.
Today, Carmen is the founder and CEO of The Workers Lab, an accelerator
with an end goal of improving conditions for low-wage workers. Under her
leadership, The Workers Lab has funded entrepreneurs, community
organizers, and technologists who are creating replicable and
revenue-generating solutions that improve conditions for workers in
Before joining The Workers Lab, Carmen was the Acting Director of Collective
Impact at Living Cities. There she enabled 22 of the largest foundations and
financial institutions in the world to work on improving economic opportunity
for low-income people through projects in the fields of economic & workforce
development, energy efficiency, and asset building.
Earlier in her career, Carmen was the Director of Strategic Programs at the
Mitchell Kapor Foundation, worked with the San Francisco Redevelopment
Agency’s Taskforce on African American Out-Migration, and worked with the
Social Equity Caucus, a program of Urban Habitat. Carmen holds a Ph.D. in
City and Regional Planning from the University of California, Berkeley and
was a Fulbright Scholar in 2007.