Honoree Headshot

Pedros Ramos

President and CEO
Philadelphia Foundation

Location: Philadelphia, PA
Founded: 1918
Industry: Philanthropy

Pedro A. Ramos, Esq., joined the Philadelphia Foundation in 2015, when the organization was lagging in influence, prominence and growth. It was Ramos’ mission to fix that.

Since then, Ramos has led some of the most powerful and important initiatives in Philadelphia Foundation’s century-old history. Under Ramos’ leadership, the foundation has raised more than $500 million, grown its assets by over 100% and launched large-scale initiatives and partnerships.

Those efforts include establishing The Lenfest Institute for Journalism, which invests in innovative news initiatives, new technology and new models for sustainable journalism; the launch of the PHL COVID-19 Fund, which raised and deployed more than $18 million to nonprofits serving on the front lines of the pandemic; and formation of the Regional Foundation LLC (a component of the Philadelphia Foundation), whose transfer of $100 million in charitable assets to Philadelphia Foundation will ensure that the legacy of the Wells Fargo Regional Foundation continues and grows.

“In the next three to five years, we will continue to execute on our second-century strategy to create impact through asset growth and smart grant-making and increase philanthropic investment in the region at both the Philadelphia Foundation and donor-driven levels,” the nonprofit said. “We will continue building an inherently dynamic organization that attracts and supports transformational philanthropic endeavors that will see us eclipse $1 billion under management, while leading, enabling and inviting creativity and reinvention to meet the ever-changing community needs.”

Ramos has served at the highest level of appointed government leadership in Philadelphia, including as city solicitor, managing director, the president of the Board of Education and the chairman of the School Reform Commission. He served as vice president and chief of staff to the president at the University of Pennsylvania, where his portfolio included coordinating Penn’s neighborhood initiatives and strategy. In 2016, he co-chaired the private-public review of Philadelphia’s emergency preparedness and led the design and creation of the city’s professional emergency preparedness and response organization.

Throughout his career, Ramos has served on fiduciary and advisory boards in the government, business and social sectors. He serves as board chair for CFLeads and the Philadelphia Award, the executive committee of the Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce, the Lenfest Institute for Journalism, FS Energy and Power Fund and Independence Health Group.

Prior to the Philadelphia Foundation, Ramos practiced law for nearly two decades, working as a partner in Philadelphia-based national law firms and focusing on tax-exempt entities, public-private initiatives and compliance.

Turning around the Philadelphia Foundation is an immense task. When he’s faced with a challenge on that scale, Ramos said he remembers to keep it simple.

“The biggest challenges can be broken down into solvable pieces with solutions,” he said.

“The most impactful solutions entail working across business, nonprofit and government sectors.”

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Honoree fun fact

Pedro is a former member of the Ukrainian American String Band.

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