Philip Otienoburu, Vice-Chair

Dr. Philip E. Otienoburu is the Senior VP for Community Development at Charlotte Center City Partners, where he leads efforts to enhance the city’s quality of life. In this role, he collaborates with stakeholders to drive economic impact, improve public spaces, and foster inclusivity.

Previously, Dr. Otienoburu served as the Food Systems Financing Sector Leader at Self-Help Credit Union & Ventures Fund. There, he developed a national lending strategy to support food and beverage businesses, positively impacting communities across the country.

As an associate professor at Johnson C. Smith University, Dr. Otienoburu successfully led significant initiatives, including founding the Center for Renewable Energy & Sustainability, creating the Sustainability Village sustainable urban farm, and expanding healthy food access in the Historic West End. Influenced by the late Nobel laureate Wangarĩ Maathai, founder of the Greenbelt Movement, he was privileged to support her activism while an undergrad student in Kenya.

Dr. Otienoburu holds a PhD from The Ohio State University and an MBA from UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School.