FWBP Top 100: Rose Bradshaw, Top Nonprofit CEO

Rose Bradshaw (Photo by Amber Shumake)

As CEO of the North Texas Community Foundation, Rose Bradshaw believes she has the best job in the world.

“Having this job is like hitting the lottery,” she said.

The job of this year’s Top 100 honoree for Top Nonprofit CEO combines business acumen with philanthropy to help improve lives of residents and strengthen communities across North Texas.

The foundation was launched in 1981 as a division of United Way of Tarrant County with a mission of recruiting donors to create charitable funds that support critical needs such as expanded health care resources, homelessness, education and jobs training, racial equality, emergency assistance, land conservation and the arts.

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The foundation’s success includes $520 million in assets last year, with a 2022 philanthropic investment of $29 million. Foundation funds go toward supporting charitable causes across an 11-county region in North Texas.

 “At NTCF, we have the privilege of working at the epicenter of so many who are working to strengthen our community,” Bradshaw said. “Whether it be donors, community leaders, residents or elected officials, everyone has a role to play in making sure we are strong for the long haul.”

A native of Arizona, Bradshaw has built a career centered on the intersection of business and philanthropy. After earning her bachelor’s degree at Loyola University in Chicago, she worked for a community foundation in San Francisco, followed by positions with bank foundations and other community foundations in New York City and Chicago.

Fifteen years ago, she and her husband, Kent Bradshaw, relocated to his hometown of Fort Worth, where she worked as a consultant to private family foundations while raising their young daughters.

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When she was ready to return to the workforce full-time, she wrote a letter to Nancy Jones, former president and CEO of the North Texas Community Foundation, and “told her I wanted to serve the town that I had grown to love,” Bradshaw said.

“That letter opened the door to a great mentor who helped prepare me for the best job in town,” she said.

Bradshaw served as executive vice president, working alongside Jones, from 2013-17. She succeeded Jones as president and CEO in 2018.

Although her job is a labor of love, it is not without challenges, particularly when it comes to meeting critical community needs.

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“There are no quick fixes to the biggest problems we face,” she said. “We need leaders who are willing to take bold actions, apply the necessary resources and hold all parties accountable for achieving results.”

As a chief executive, Bradshaw said she is “relentlessly focused on delivering results for clients.” She is also committed to hiring top talent and continually supporting them in their journey to success.

As for work-life balance, Bradshaw’s motto is “focus on work at work and focus on family at home.”