Nicholas serves as the Executive Director of the Better Way Foundation. His career has encompassed leading complex strategies and building relationships to advance the mission of an organization, including 15 years across the business, philanthropy, and nonprofit sectors. Prior to the Better Way Foundation, Nicholas served as Chief of Staff for Great MN Schools—a venture philanthropy network of foundations and funders that he helped incubate at The Minneapolis Foundation to dramatically improve K-12 systems and to ensure all children attend excellent and equitable schools. At Great MN Schools, he led strategic priorities, finance and operations, budget and reserves management, communications, policy, and coalition development.
Prior experiences also include Director of New Sites & Expansion for 50CAN—there, he aligned philanthropy and communities to create state organizations to advance equity across PreK-12 systems—and Deputy Director for MinnCAN. While at MinnCAN, Nicholas was a founding Executive Committee member of MinneMinds, the successful statewide Pre-K scholarship campaign that has helped thousands of children from low-income backgrounds access high-quality early education and care. Nicholas started his career as a Senior Account Executive, Investor Relations for Padilla.
Nicholas serves on the Board of Directors for Elevating Education MN and the Friends of the Boundary Waters Action Network. He has degrees from American University—a master’s degree in Public Communication and bachelor’s degrees in Communications, Legal Institutions, Economics, and Government. Nicholas, his wife, and their three children live in Mendota Heights, Minn.; he frequents Minnesota’s Arrowhead region (where he’s from), including the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness, and is an avid runner.