Vice Chair, AARP Foundation Board of Directors
David Adame, of Phoenix, Ariz., is President and Chief Executive Officer of Chicanos Por La Causa, Inc., one of the nation’s largest Hispanic community development corporations.
Since Adame was named to the top post in 2015 by unanimous vote of the CPLC Board of Directors, CPLC has experienced significant growth and expansion, impacting more than 378,000 individuals annually in Arizona, Nevada, and New Mexico.
CPLC, which was established in 1969 to address injustice in Phoenix schools, provides direct services through economic development, education, housing, and health services via its nonprofit and for-profit ventures.
Born and raised just south of downtown Phoenix, Adame is aware of the challenges still faced by Latinos and underserved communities in terms of opportunity, education and equity. Although he has been with CPLC since 2008, serving as Chief Operating Officer and Chief Financial Officer prior to becoming President and CEO, his roots at CPLC run deeper. Adame got his professional start at CPLC in 1985 upon graduation from college, serving two years as CPLC’s Director of Economic Development before moving on.
In returning to CPLC, Adame has crafted an impressive career in leadership in business, nonprofits and boards, including an extensive resume in real estate and development projects.
Adame was Vice President of Arizona Operations for McCormack Baron & Salazar from 2003 to 2008, responsible for overseeing the firm’s role in Henson Village, a HOPE VI project in Phoenix. Funded in part by a $35 million grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, the 611-unit mixed-income/mixed-financed residential development had a total development cost of $150 million.
As Senior Deputy Director of Fannie Mae’s Arizona Partnership Office from 1997 to 2003, Adame worked in tandem with the Director to implement “HouseArizona,” a five-year, $15 billion investment plan to finance affordable housing throughout the state.
Adame was Program Officer with the Phoenix Office of the Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC), from 1994 to 1997, where he managed the HOMESTART program, a for-sale affordable housing development project totaling $1 billion.
He worked at JPMorgan Chase & Co. (then called Bank One Arizona) for eight years, including as Corporate Banking Associate and later as Assistant Vice President in the Retail Business Loan Center. He was responsible for managing and underwriting residential and commercial loans, before leaving in 2004.
Adame holds a B.S. in Business from Arizona State University (ASU) and an MBA from the ASU School of Global Management. He was awarded an Honorary Doctorate in Humane Letters from the University of Arizona, and an Honorary Doctorate from Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM, or the National Autonomous University of Mexico).
Over the years, Adame has served on numerous boards, including: the Greater Phoenix Economic Council; the AARP Foundation; the National Association for Latino Community Asset Builders; the Arizona-Mexico Commission; the Maricopa Community Colleges Foundation; UnidosUS; the Community Reinvestment Fund USA; the Creighton University Presidential Health Sciences Phoenix Advisory Board; and the Arizona Housing Commission.
Recent honors include the Individual Hero of Education Award by Maricopa Community Colleges and the Maricopa Community Colleges Foundation, and the Lifetime Achievement Award by the Arizona Asian Chamber of Commerce.