June 21, 2020

Episode 22: Luis Ubinas - Investor, Advisor, Corporate Board Member

Episode 22: Luis Ubinas - Investor, Advisor, Corporate Board Member

Today’s guest is Luis Ubinas. Luis is someone who’s been driven by a strong sense of responsibility from an early age. He grew up in the projects of the South Bronx in the 1970s, arguably the most dangerous neighborhood in the United States at the ...


Today’s guest is Luis Ubinas. Luis is someone who’s been driven by a strong sense of responsibility from an early age. He grew up in the projects of the South Bronx in the 1970s, arguably the most dangerous neighborhood in the United States at the time. With the amazing support of others, including individuals and the government, Luis was not only able to survive that upbringing but also thrive in the years that follow. After graduating from Harvard in 1985, Luis went on to work at McKinsey and eventually become Senior Partner, where he developed and led the West Coast Media and Entertainment Practice. Following McKinsey, he became President of the Ford Foundation for 6 years and led a major restructuring of the organization during the Great Recession. Now, he’s a Board Member of numerous large corporations including Electronic Arts, Boston Private, and Mercer. Even with all of this professional success, Luis has always made it a point to look back on his past and make sure that others can have the same opportunities he has had. In this interview, we discuss Luis’ upbringing in South Bronx, how that upbringing shaped him, his work as President of the Ford Foundation, and the impact art and technology can have in driving social change.

Timestamps

00:05:31 How the environment he grew up in was a blessing

00:11:43 Why a high proportion of immigrants leads to lower criminality

00:14:27 How he navigated out of the South Bronx

00:17:03 Looking back on your past

00:21:40 Finding purpose

00:29:28 Impact of his time at McKinsey

00:31:55 Advice for people early in their careers

00:33:45 His sense of responsibility as a driving force

00:35:25 Understanding the goodness of what you've done

00:39:37 Taking the Ford Foundation job

00:40:58 Restructuring the Ford Foundation

00:48:02 Making real change happen

00:54:00 Art's large role in his life

00:59:06 Art as a vehicle for social change

01:01:16 Technology driving social change

01:05:54 Economic growth and social inclusion

01:08:27 Income inequality

01:11:00 Opportunities for social change during the pandemic