It is with our deepest sympathies and condolences that ASPIRA Inc., of New Jersey share the passing of Ronald Blackburn-Moreno with our friends, family, and constituents. Mr. Blackburn-Moreno was a luminary and staunch advocate for education, youth development and supporting historically undeserved communities. He was a proud Puerto-Rican man who cherished his heritage and the rich legacy of his people.
Mr. Blackburn-Moreno is survived by his loving bride of almost 30 years, Evelyn, his daughter and sons, his grandchildren, and a great-grandchild.
He was also a mentor and friend to our Executive Director, Carlos Valentin, Jr. for almost 30 years.
Mr. Blackburn-Moreno, or "Ron" to his closest friends, was born in Jersey City, New Jersey and raised in San Juan, Puerto Rico, the eldest of three siblings. (His mother was born in Puerto Rico, his father, in New Jersey) He always credited his parents with being his source of motivation for pursuing higher education.
He attended the University of Puerto Rico, where he graduated with his Bachelor’s degree in Political Science. Next came graduate school at New York University, and then Princeton University, where he received an Masters in Politics.
Before his transition, Mr. Blackburn-Moreno served as the President and CEO of ASPIRA, the largest national Hispanic organization in the country dedicated exclusively to the education of Latino youth. As President, Mr. Blackburn-Moreno served as the national spokesperson for ASPIRA and led the association in its national public policy work, and in securing funding for its programs.
Prior to joining ASPIRA, he was the Community Outreach Director at the Quality Education for Minorities (QEM) Network and the Coordinator of Student Academic Enrichment for the College Board’s Equity 2000 program. Before that, he served as Assistant to the President of the Ana G. Mendez University System and as Director of Development of the 11-campus University of Puerto Rico, where he developed a series of national STEM consortia. He also served as adjunct faculty at Hunter College and taught Political Science at the Catholic University of Puerto Rico.
He also appeared as an expert on many television and radio programs on education and the Hispanic community, including the Lehrer New Hour, ABC News, NPR, and PBS and is a regular guest on HITN’s Destination Casa Blanca with Ray Suarez. He has extensive consulting experience in the corporate, foundation and government sectors. He has received numerous awards and recognitions, and has been selected three times as one of the 100 Most Influential Hispanics by Hispanic Business Magazine (2001, 2004, 2009).
Please click the videos to hear Mr. Blackburn-Moreno's words, wisdom and passion. Rest in peace, strength and power.
CORPORATE & NON PROFIT BOARDS PREVIOUSLY SERVED
Board and Chair of the National Hispanic Leadership Agenda (NHLA)
Chair and Treasurer of the Board of the Hispanic Association on Corporate Responsibility (HACR)
Board member of the National Puerto Rican Coalition.
Wal-Mart External Advisory Board
The Coca Cola Council on Corporate School Partnerships
The NewsCorp/Fox Entertainment Advisory Board
The Financial Services Roundtable Retirement Security Advisory Board
The Home Depot Advisory Board
The Center for Puerto Rican Studies Advisory Board at Hunter College
The President's Advisory Board on Science Engineering and Health at the Ana G. Mendez University System
The family requests that donations be made to the Ronald Blackburn-Moreno Youth Fund at the ASPIRA Association. 1220 L Street, NW, Suite 701, Washington, DC 20005. Donations can also be sent on line at aspira.org
For more information, contact: Laura Blackburn at 787-504-0165 or
Alfonso Davila, ASPIRA Association Board Chair at 787- 412-9040