José García is a program officer on the Inclusive Economies team. Prior to joining Ford, he served as program officer for Strong Local Economies at the Surdna Foundation, where he led the design and implementation of a $4 million grant-making portfolio to spur business development and acceleration while focusing on quality job and wealth creation. His portfolio focused on double and triple bottom line local businesses and organizations assisting the growth of people of color, women, and immigrant-owned businesses. Additionally, he sourced and monitored program-related investment (PRI) deals that fit the foundation’s program strategy.
Before his time at Surdna, he was a policy fellow at the National Council of La Raza’s Wealth Building Policy Project. During his tenure, he coauthored the book Foreclosure to Fair Lending: Advocacy, Organizing, Occupy, and the Pursuit of Equitable Credit and the policy report Making the Mortgage Market Work for America’s Families. Shortly before that, he deviated from his career path to assist his family’s small business during a period of transition—and was able to see firsthand how economic policies affect mom and pop shops.
Earlier in his career, José served as associate director for the Economic Opportunity Program at Demos, where he authored dozens of reports on household debt and coauthored the book Up to Our Eyeballs: How Shady Lenders and Failed Economic Policies are Drowning Americans in Debt.