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40 Under 40 Featuring Ruben Gonzalez

Given his background in nonprofit programming, as the director of finance for New York Edge, Ruben Gonzalez says he has made it his mission to bridge the gap between the sector’s finance and programming departments.

“There’s always this disconnection … one doesn’t understand what the other does and I think that’s extremely crucial to actually grasp what are each other’s responsibilities to better be efficient,” Gonzalez says.

Before switching to the financial side of the nonprofit sector, Gonzalez spent 10 years in nonprofit programming. During his career, he has served as a case-plan manager with the New York Urban League and as a Learning to Work program director with Harlem Renaissance High School. He also provided parenting workshops and school-aged workshops at the New York City Mission Society.

When Gonzalez joined New York Edge, he started as a program manager overseeing seven to eight after-school programs before transferring to the finance department as a budget compliance supervisor, overseeing $33 million in government contract funding.

Recalling his own childhood in the Bronx, Gonzalez says he owes his success to programs like those provided by New York Edge, pointing to the influence of the organization’s Champions Club, which provides a wide range of enrichment opportunities.

“It’s always been a passion of mine to work in the communities that I was raised in,” Gonzalez says.

In the future, Gonzalez says his goal is to build reserves and endowments for the organization to be less reliant on contract funding. [see the full article here]