Release Date: 02-24-2021
Accomplished leader with opportunity finance, racial justice, and food systems expertise takes new role at nonprofit
PORTLAND, Ore. — February 24, 2021 — Olivia M. Rebanal joins Ecotrust this week as the organization’s first Chief Impact Officer (CIO). Rebanal brings 20 years of leadership in community development and social finance to the Portland-based nonprofit, which works from Alaska through northern California. As CIO, Rebanal will lead work across Ecotrust’s key program areas—food and agriculture, fisheries and coastal communities, forestry and ecosystem services, social finance, and green workforce development—to develop systems-scale solutions that advance economic opportunity, environmental stewardship, and racial equity.
“I have long admired the work of Ecotrust, and that admiration has increased in recent years as I observe the organization intentionally pivot to center race in its work to advance inclusion in justice at the intersections of environment, economy, and equity,” said Rebanal. “I am excited to bring my expertise in inclusive leadership and collaboration to this new role.”
Rebanal takes this leadership role at Ecotrust at a time when the organization is centering its objective to advance racial justice, to broaden economic opportunity, and to create climate solutions in this region and beyond. She will create a shared vision to achieve collective impact among Ecotrust and its many partners.
“We are working toward a climate-smart, equitable, and prosperous future for our region and beyond, and Olivia is a tremendous addition to our team,” said Jeremy Barnicle, Executive Director of Ecotrust. “Olivia’s experience and values round out our skill sets in social finance and racial equity and her approach will make her a true thought leader in our space.”
Prior to joining Ecotrust, Rebanal was Director of Inclusive Food Systems at Arlington, Va.-based Capital Impact Partners, where she developed the organization’s first racial justice strategy and designed and implemented healthy food financing initiatives, including the $30 million collaborative, Michigan Good Food Fund. She built an understanding of Ecotrust’s unique business model during service on the Ecotrust Investments board, which she joined in 2020. She was a business finance officer for Prosper Portland from 2004 to 2007, and she launched and managed small business loan funds in communities of color throughout the West Coast for the National Development Council’s Grow America Fund from 2007 to 2014. In her new role as Ecotrust CIO, Rebanal will be based in Oakland, Calif., at the southern edge of the region where Ecotrust focuses its work.
Ecotrust creates and accelerates triple-bottom-line innovations to benefit our region and inspire the world. Our work is rooted in the region from California to Alaska that holds productive lands and determined people. On the farm, at the coast, in the forest, and across our cities, we work in partnership towards an equitable, prosperous, climate-smart future. We recognize the legacy of colonialism and the deep inequities of this place, and we believe that radical, practical change is possible and necessary. Since 1991, we have created durable change and sparked ideas across the globe. Join us at ecotrust.org