Foundation Staff

Jerry Kenney

Program Officer, Education and Economic Opportunity


In the United States and across the globe, Jerry has developed solutions at the intersection of education and economic development within the academic, federal, and non-governmental sectors. Most recently, Jerry coordinated regional and national networks, led program initiatives, and created the essential guide and tools to accelerate the recovery and strengthen the resilience of the early education sector in the aftermath of disasters, including the COVID-19 pandemic. He designed and directed the nation’s largest early education recovery program following Hurricane Harvey that provided assistance to more than 700 damaged child care providers and 32,000 young children across Greater Houston. Jerry led innovative child care resilience pilot programs, leveraging technology partnerships and local peer networks to strengthen business viability, build social capital, and increase emergency preparedness in low-income communities.

Jerry specializes in program design and development, particularly launching new organizational initiatives. He played a key role in establishing the Center on Conflict and Development at Texas A&M University as well as a Sub-Saharan Africa support office for agricultural research and extension programs. Jerry has coordinated breakthrough student experiential learning opportunities, including the Iraqi scholars program, an agricultural extension exchange for South Sudanese college graduates, and a capstone field research program to the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Jerry has served as a lead representative in national-level policy and advocacy forums and conducted field research for several technical and advocacy reports. Jerry started with classroom teaching and community development as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Armenia from 2007-2009. Based in the U.S., South Sudan, and South Africa, Jerry has worked for Save the Children, Collaborative for Children, World Vision, The Samaritan Inn, and Texas A&M University. He has a Master of International Affairs from the Bush School of Government and Public Service at Texas A&M University and a bachelor’s from Austin College.