Fels Racial Equity and Social Justice Speaker Conversation Series with guest Vaughn Ross

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Friday, February 10, 2023 - 6:00pm to 7:00pm
Event Information: 

Vaughn Ross, founder of Rvesta Consulting, previously served as First Deputy Chief of Staff to Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney from 2016-2021. In his time with Mayor Kenney, he retained a portfolio of departments focused on economic development, including the department of Planning and Development, the Commerce Department, and the Office of Transportation, Infrastructure, and Sustainability. On behalf of the mayor’s office, he maintained relationships with a number of external, quasi-governmental, and nonprofit partners, including the Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce, Philadelphia Industrial Development Corporation, Philadelphia Convention and Visitors Bureau: Greater Philadelphia Hotel Association, SEPTA, the Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission, and the Mayor’s Fund for Philadelphia.

Vaughn has extensive experience working with Philadelphia community-based organizations such as registered community organizations, business improvement districts, community development corporations, neighborhood violence prevention partners, and faith-based institutions.

Prior to joining municipal government, Vaughn spent five years as a fundraiser for political campaigns in and around Philadelphia. He led successful fundraising efforts, culminating in Mayor Kenney’s 2015 victory, and oversaw direct donor outreach, principal management, and financial compliance.

Vaughn serves on the board of directors of the Mayor’s Fund for Philadelphia, a city-associated nonprofit organization that serves as a financial administrator for donor-restricted grants. He administers a board-directed targeted community grant program, Germantown United CDC, his local community development corporation, and co-chairs the Philadelphia Urban Land Institute’s Technical Assistance Panel Committee. Vaughn previously served on the board of USA250, an organization dedicated to making Philadelphia the focal point of the nation’s 250th anniversary in 2026, and PHL Soccer 2026, the nonprofit bid committee that successfully secured Philadelphia’s place as a host city in the 2026 FIFA World Cup.

Vaughn is a member of the African American Chamber of Commerce – PA, NJ, DE, the Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce, and the Urban Land Institute. He has a BA in international relations from Lehigh University. 

About the series:
The Fels Racial Equity and Social Justice Series, led by Fels alum Matt Stitt, is designed to provide students with a variety of perspectives on how public policy impacts racial equity and social justice. The series will include conversations with elected officials, policymakers, and public sector leaders to examine how policy, legislation, and practice can further racial equity and social justice goals. Fels is proud to offer these important conversations to Fels students and alumni, the entire Penn community, and members of the public.


Zoom - A link will be emailed to registrants on the morning of the event.


Fels Institute of Government

The Fels Institute of Government
3814 Walnut St. 
Philadelphia, PA 19104

(215) 898-7326