Richard Robbins is the founder and CEO of Upper West Strategies, a consultancy that develops strategy and programs at the intersection of government, tech and private industry with a focus on government and mission-driven clients. He consults for New York City's Department of Education on workforce readiness for IT students. He also works closely with the civic technology firm NuCivic in supporting their business development activities with leading government clients. He has extensive experience in strategy, marketing, policy and tech. He worked for nearly 10 years at AT&T in a range of positions including serving as Director, Social Innovation, where he played an instrumental role in developing the company’s overall social media strategy. He initiated and led AT&T’s groundbreaking partnership with Rock the Vote that engaged 250,000 young Americans via text messaging, and initiated AT&T's pledge not to text and drive that has been signed by nearly 9 million people. Prior to getting his MBA at Columbia Business School, he ran the American Express Gold Card Events program at Festival Marketing, where he implemented strategies to dramatically grow the program’s impact, including through pioneering use of online media. He has deep connections with senior leaders in government, corporations, start-ups, non-profits and advocacy organizations and especially in the tech start-up community in New York City, and has a long history of developing innovative strategies for leveraging technology to reach target audiences. He lives on the Upper West Side with his wife and two daughters, serves on Manhattan Community Board 7, rides his bike, plays tennis, BBQs and tweets actively at @rich1.