Linda Lopez

Linda Lopez Portrait
Dean’s Advisory Board Member
CEO, Impact Strategies

As a social impact strategist and philanthropic, Linda Lopez has worked at the highest levels of government and in academia. Dr. Lopez advises a number of clients in her role as CEO of Impact Strategies, a consulting firm providing policy, strategy and advise to foundation executives, non-profit organizations, and government on best practices to invest resources to advance economic opportunity for marginalized communities, mitigate the impacts of climate change, and refugee resettlement.  

Most recently Dr. Lopez served as a senior advisor to a global foundation on a $36 million investment for COVID-19 relief and distribution of cash assistance in 25 cities to invest in local profit organizations assisting families and children, essential workers, and unemployed workers.  Dr. Lopez is currently advising Casey Family Programs on an unprecedented initiative examining the impact of social determinants of health on Latino families and children and their overall well-being. She was formerly the Chief of the Office of Immigrant Affairs for Los Angeles Mayor, Eric Garcetti, where she led policy, and designed programs to serve immigrants and refugees in the City of LA. She co-led the establishment of a $10 million fund, the LA Justice Fund, with the philanthropic sector to provide grants to 17 legal and social services organizations to expand legal services for victims of domestic violence, refugees, unaccompanied minors, and youth.  

Prior to joining government, she was the Associate Dean for Diversity and Strategic Initiatives at the University of Southern California’s Dornsife College of Letters, Arts, and Sciences managing programs on first generation college pathways, faculty recruitment, and retention. She has also worked as a senior executive, at the National Science Foundation, where she oversaw a portfolio of programs and grants focused on undergraduate research, advancing women in academia, and K-12 education to university opportunities. She is a former professor of law of public policy  at the University of Southern California and Chapman University.

Dr. Lopez has provided policy expertise in a variety of media outlets and publications. She is passionate about serving others to create economic and educational opportunities to underserved groups.  Through her human rights work, she is developing a new model for refugee resettlement in the US by building a university coalition to sponsor Afghan and Ukranian refugees. She is the winner of the Coalition Against Slavery and Trafficking’s Citizen Award and has been invited to become a BMW Foundation’s Herbert Quandt Global Responsible leader for her work on human rights. She has been an Aspen Institute Socrates fellow, Abshire Inamori fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies and serves on the Advisory Board of the Pacific Council’s on International Policy’s Mexico Advisory Board. She also serves on the following non-profit board of directors: California Hospital, Dignity Health; Coalition Against Slavery and Trafficking; and the Eastern Los Angeles Regional Center.  

Dr. Lopez is the daughter of immigrant parents from Ecuador. She currently resides in the Los Angeles area with her family. She received her PhD in Law and Policy and Master’s degree from the University of Southern California and her undergraduate degree from California Polytechnic University of Pomona.