Brian S, Lyght, City Startup Labs Board Member



COO, The Center for Urban Families


Brian Lyght is a business development and strategy professional with over 30 years of combined public, private and nonprofit sector experience helping organizations improve their operational performance and achieve their mission. Since 2017, Brian has served as Chief Operating Officer of the Center for Urban Families, a Baltimore, MD-based human services organization whose mission is to strengthen urban communities by helping fathers and families achieve stability and economic success. Reporting to the Founder, President & CEO, Brian manages the organization’s senior staff who oversee programs, finance and administration, human resources, and research and evaluation.  He provides a strong day-to-day leadership presence among staff who are committed to dismantling poverty and promoting equity and social justice throughout Baltimore.


Between 2013 and 2017, Brian served in dual roles at Casey Family Programs, the nation’s largest operating foundation focused on safely reducing the need for foster care and building Communities of Hope for children and families across America. As Director of Knowledge Management, Brian partnered with internal and external experts from across the country to summarize, analyze, and make accessible child welfare knowledge and innovation. As Executive-on-Loan to the U.S.  Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration, Brian contributed to the implementation of an integrated national workforce investment system that supports economic growth, provides employers with skilled workers, and supports disadvantaged youth to obtain skills and good paying jobs with career pathways.


Prior to joining Casey Family Programs, Brian served as a Senior Associate at the Annie E. Casey Foundation from 2002 to 2013, where he coordinated strategic grant making and cross-foundation collaboration to improve outcomes for systems-involved youth transitioning to adulthood. Brian also served as a Program Director for Economic Opportunity Programs at the Enterprise Foundation from 1997 to 2002. In earlier career positions – as Assistant Vice President for Corporate Community Development at CoreStates Bank, and as Special Assistant to the President of the Massachusetts Community Development Finance Corporation – Brian supported the development and expansion of small, minority-owned, and community-based businesses. Brian began his career in 1986 as an investment banker at PaineWebber where he structured tax-exempt bond financings to support the development of affordable housing.


Brian holds an MBA in Finance and Entrepreneurial Management from The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, and a BBA in Banking and Finance from Hofstra University.

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