Rich Baum

President & Ceo

Rich Baum has deep experience leading large, complex organizations in the educational, nonprofit, and government sectors, including the largest private university in the United States and the state government of New York.

Rich most recently served as Chief of Staff to the President of New York University, a position he held for the past 11 years across two university presidents. He managed day-to-day and longer-term decision-making, as well as implementation of major University initiatives and policies; served as a primary link between the President and University senior staff; and coordinated University responses to major institutional challenges. Rich also oversaw several NYU offices, including the Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion; the Office of Government Relations; the Office of Sustainability; and the Office of Equal Opportunity; which implements non-discrimination and harassment policies.

Previously, as Chief Operating Officer at the New York Academy of Sciences, one of the nation’s premier scientific academies, Rich oversaw staff, programs, and operations. In this role, he initiated and raised funds for several innovative programs including the creation of the Institute for Nutrition Science in collaboration with World Health Organization, as well as major new programming in partnership with the City of New York, focusing on science education.

Rich served in New York State government for nearly a decade, in the Governor’s and Attorney General’s Office. As Secretary to the Governor (the governor’s senior-most aide), he was a primary advisor to the Governor as well as a link between the Governor and senior staff of the executive branch. Before that, Rich was Chief of Staff in the New York State Attorney General’s Office, where he served as a key advisor to the Attorney General on strategy and decision-making. In this role, Rich also oversaw the agency’s daily operations – including supervising administration, communications, and intergovernmental affairs – and served as the Attorney General’s primary liaison with advocacy groups, elected officials, unions, business representatives, and the community.

Rich ran two successful statewide political campaigns, the first of which was a razor-thin major upset, while the second resulted in the largest gubernatorial margin of victory in New York state history.

Born in Middletown, New York, Rich began his public service career in his hometown when he was elected as the youngest member at that point in the history of the Orange County Legislature. He was selected by his peers in that body to be the Democratic minority leader from 1994-97. During that time Rich also worked on his family’s dairy farm. 

Rich earned his B.A. degree in history from Cornell University, where he received a Telluride Scholarship for academic excellence. An avid hiker and constant reader, Rich lives in New York City with his wife and their two sons.