Media Advisory

Rural Community Assistance Corporation (RCAC) named Ari Neumann as Chief Impact and Policy Officer (CIPO) in February. As CIPO Neumann will engage the Chief Executive Officer and Senior Leadership Team, lobbyists, key state and federal industry policy leaders and stakeholders to evaluate, understand proposed policy impacts, goals, strategies and values. This is a newly created position for RCAC.

Prior to being named CIPO, Neumann was RCAC’s Director of Community and Environmental Services since November 2018 after serving as Assistant Director since 2016. As Director, he led RCAC’s efforts to provide technical assistance and training on drinking water, sewer, solid waste and community-led economic development. During his tenure, the Community and Environmental team expanded RCAC offerings with a focus on environmental justice, helping communities access the unprecedented funding for infrastructure from the federal and numerous state governments, and launching one-on-one coaching services for small businesses in rural and Indigenous communities. He has extensive experience in rural communities and with small utility systems. Before joining RCAC, he held a director level position at the national Rural Community Assistance Partnership in Washington, D.C. His experience also includes environmental policy advocacy at the state and federal level.

“RCAC is thrilled to appoint Ari Neumann as our inaugural Chief Impact and Policy Officer. Ari’s wealth of experience, dedication and strategic vision make him the ideal choice to drive our mission forward. With him in the role we are positioned to deepen our impact and expand our advocacy work in rural and Indigenous communities across the West,” said Suzanne-Anarde Devenport, RCAC chief executive officer.

“I look forward to this opportunity to elevate the voice and the needs of rural and Indigenous communities throughout the West to our elected leaders and other decision-makers who influence rural policy and programs. I’m eager to translate the lessons learned through RCAC’s decades of assistance to communities into actionable strategies to improve the way programs are designed and delivered to rural and Indigenous communities,” said Neumann.

Neumann earned a Juris Doctor degree from the University of Washington School of Law and was admitted to the Washington, D.C. Bar; a Bachelor of Arts in American studies with a concentration in environmental policy from Stanford University; and has professional affiliations with the Greenlaw Environmental Law Society, the California Climate Justice Working Group and the California County Drought Advisory Group.

RCAC partners with rural and Indigenous communities to achieve their vision and well-being through technical assistance, training, financial resources, and advocacy. RCAC serves rural communities in 13 western states and western Pacific islands. Services are available to communities with populations of fewer than 50,000, other nonprofit groups, tribal organizations, farmworkers, colonias and other specific populations. RCAC staff provides direct services in program areas including affordable housing, environmental services, economic development, and lending. Learn more about RCAC here.

Media contact:
Julia Helmreich, director
Communications & Development
(916) 529-7563