Richard F. McKeon

Program Director, Education

Richard F. McKeon is the Program Director of the Helmsley Charitable Trust’s Education Program, which focuses on national work in education at both the K-12 and higher education levels. In this capacity, he leads a team that seeks to increase the number of American students who succeed in college or careers and can compete in the global, 21st century marketplace. The work includes: advocacy support for college- and career-ready standards for every K-12 student; support for teachers to help them transform their practice to help students meet the new, higher standards; and in higher education, to improve the persistence to graduation of Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) majors, particularly for under-represented students, through support for the improvement of introductory STEM courses and related wrap-around supports.

Prior to his current role, he oversaw the Trust’s programs in education and conservation and a portfolio of health and medical research grants. Before joining the Trust, Rich was a director at Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors (RPA) where he led grantmaking programs for clients funding in education, youth development, healthcare and conservation. He also provided high-level philanthropic advisory and strategic planning services to Fortune 500 companies and foundations. Prior to RPA, Rich was vice president and community relations manager at Fleet/Bank of America where he led grantmaking programs for NYC and Westchester County in the areas of education, community and economic development, youth development and arts and culture. Prior to his work in philanthropy, Rich spent 10 years in bank management positions with Chase and Fleet.

Rich co-chairs the Collaborative for Student Success, which supports higher K-12 academic standards and high-quality student assessments, and he is an active member of Grantmakers for Education. Rich also serves on the board of Youth Represent, an organization that provides free legal services to disadvantaged youth in NYC. Rich received his B.A. from Fairfield University, his MBA from Fordham University and also attended Harvard University’s Education Grantmakers’ Institute.