Laura Burgos
Director, Investment Practice Group

If I had to describe myself in four words, it would be: “Always curious, never comfortable.”

In my role as Director in VPP’s Investment Practice Group, I bring nearly 20 years of experience in the K12 education and leadership space, with a portfolio that spans public, private and nonprofit education agencies. As a former school administrator and nonprofit leader, I have led change efforts in various regions across the country which has allowed me to develop a deep understanding of educational inequities, barriers to systemic change, and how to respond to contextual challenges through partnership and collaboration.

When I decided that it was time to explore the next step in my career, I focused on researching foundations that work across sectors to achieve measurable change – I remain very much interested in collective impact strategies that are community-driven and designed and implemented with a racial justice lens. VPP caught my attention because of its emphasis on building the capacity of investment partners and co-creating solutions to identified barriers.

Prior to joining the VPP team, I managed a portfolio of school districts across the country, supporting district transformation efforts as part of the UVA Partnership for Leaders in Education. In May 2018, I was awarded a Doctor of Education Leadership (Ed.L.D.) by the Harvard Graduate School of Education, an experience that culminated with a leadership residency at the University of Washington Center for Educational Leadership. During my residency I examined the ways in which a university-based, nonprofit entity could remain relevant and financially solvent in a changing education landscape. My experience leading this strategic effort, along with the recommendations and findings that emerged, can be found in my published Capstone, “The Road to Strategic Renewal. Navigating the Distance Between Mission, Strategy and Impact at the Center for Educational Leadership.”

When I came to VPP, I was excited to work alongside a team that was locally focused, possessed deep expertise, and that was headed by a strong team of African-American and Latinx leaders. VPP’s approach to philanthropy and the impact it has is really unique in the social sector.

When I’m not at work, I love staying active – including hiking, biking, and spending time at the gym. A creative spirit, I enjoy poetry writing and crafting spoken word narratives that capture my lived experiences.

I also enjoy traveling, impromptu road trips and exploring new landscapes.