Zoila Ligia Jennings

Impact Investment Lead

Zoila Jennings joined the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation in 2021, bringing her career focus on social justice and poverty alleviation—through targeted community financing—to her work as an impact investments officer.

Previously, Zoila served as senior relationship manager with U.S. Bank, the fifth largest commercial bank in the United States, as part of its Community Development Corporation. In this role she sourced, structured, and underwrote loans and equity investments to Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs). She also developed and executed investment initiatives to help address racial inequities, including a $25 million fund to support women of color microbusiness owners and the first CDFI-issued racial equity bond for targeted investments in underserved communities of color.

Prior to joining U.S. Bank, Zoila spent 10 years at JPMorgan Chase, New York, rotating in various roles including vice president for Community Development-New Markets Tax Credits, where she used tax equity to structure community development transactions. As a credit underwriter she managed a credit portfolio that included lending—from small working capital lines to large syndicated tax-exempt debt obligations—to nonprofit hospitals, higher education institutions, and social services agencies.

In other roles, she founded a consulting firm that specializes in credit underwriting, loan structuring, and financial due diligence for loans and investments that benefit low-income communities.

Zoila holds an MBA from Kellogg School of Management, and a BS in Business Economics with a concentration in Catholic Studies from Fordham University. Born in the Dominican Republic, she was raised in Queens, N.Y., and now lives in South Orange, N.J., with her husband, Justin, and their two girls, Adalisa and Carolynn. When she is not diffusing her children’s arguments over who gets the last ice pop or who can pick the show to watch, she enjoys reading fantasy novels.

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