Melvin J. Galloway, chief operating officer (COO), joined the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) in 2020. His distinguished career has included executive-level positions in operations, administration, policy, and programs. His management philosophy promotes the ideal of connecting operations and shared services to an organization’s mission and strategic goals, and his leadership fosters an environment of experimentation and innovation that helps organizations continually learn and evolve. Moreover, he possesses a profoundly deep commitment to embedding equity, diversity, and inclusion into business processes.
Melvin was drawn to the Foundation by its focus on ensuring that everyone has a fair and just opportunity to be as healthy as possible. He credits his mother’s lengthy career in social work at a food bank in Cincinnati—and the time he spent there in his younger years helping to provide nourishing food to people in need—with inspiring him to pursue a career in public service. He praises RWJF’s vision for a Culture of Health as a pathway to addressing the fundamental equity issues that he experienced and witnessed in his community.
As a strategic senior leader, he works to develop and implement a plan to assume oversight of Human Resources and Administration (including buildings/facilities and business/administrative services management), IT, and Finance. He is also responsible for operational crisis management and continuity of operations, including cybersecurity.
Melvin came to the Foundation with 15 years of operations, business management, and security experience. Previously, he served as the executive vice president and chief operating office for Planned Parenthood Federation of America and Planned Parenthood Action Fund. In this role, he oversaw operations, business, and security functions and was responsible for ensuring that the national organization was set up to deliver on its important strategic goals.
Prior to joining Planned Parenthood, he served as the chief operations officer for the New York State Governor’s Office of Storm Recovery, where he oversaw operations for a complex federally-funded U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) disaster recovery program. Melvin’s experience in disaster recovery also extends to his role as the assistant vice president of the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation, where he managed affordable housing, business, and infrastructure HUD-funded recovery programs following the attacks of September 11, 2001.
Earlier in his career, Melvin held the position of associate director of operations at The Rockefeller Foundation, where he served as the deputy for the chief operating officer, overseeing shared services units across U.S. and international offices.
Melvin received his Bachelor’s degree in Spanish and International Studies from Miami University of Ohio and a Master’s in Public Administration and Finance from New York University. He is a former Fulbright Scholar who worked with a variety of civil society organizations in Venezuela.
Born in Cincinnati, Ohio, Melvin now resides in Brooklyn, N.Y. He enjoys early morning fitness activities and what he calls “non aggressive hikes.”