Sarah Bobrow-Williams

Faculty, Goddard Graduate Institute
Residency Site: Plainfield VT



Sarah Bobrow-Williams began at Goddard in 2008 as faculty for the Sustainable Business and Communities MA and helped to establish the MA in Social Innovation and Sustainability. In addition to Goddard she has served as the Asset and Finance Development Director for the Southern Rural Black Women’s Initiative for Economic and Social Justice administered by the Children’s Defense Fund Southern Regional Office for the past 14 years. Her career has included working for the New Mexico Community Foundation/Ganados del Valle in northern NM; the Penn Center in the South Carolina Sea Islands; the Southern Rural Development Initiative on grassroots cultural, environmental and economic sustainability initiatives and for the Association for Enterprise Opportunity and the Samuel Rubin Foundation providing practitioner development services and financial support. At home Sarah contributes to local community initiatives and operates a planning firm with her husband Franklin Williams targeting community based nonprofits, municipal and county governments and for-profit, non-profit and academic partnerships. For over 20 years Sarah has served on Tuskegee University’s annual Professional Agricultural Workers Conference Advisory Board, a consortium of representatives from Historically Black Land Grant Institutions and state, federal, private and community based partners.


MA in Community and Regional Planning, University of New Mexico
BA in Politics and English, New York University

Certificate Economic Development Finance, National Development Council
Youth Development Certificate, Georgia Southern University

Areas of Expertise

Racial, social and environmental justice; community economic development; alternative economies; business development and finance; cooperative development/worker ownership; community and regional planning; sustainable rural and agricultural development; food security; movement building, grassroots organizing and activism; cultural ecology; nonprofit administration; organizational development; leadership development; social innovation and sustainability; systems thinking.

Personal Statement

My broad professional and personal goal is to build vibrant, just and sustainable communities and economies. My work in the world focuses on developing local capacity, networks and partnerships that facilitate equitable access to resources and opportunity for economically marginalized communities and residents and creating the infrastructure for sustained economic and social progress. The exchange and relationships I have with Goddard students and faculty reinvigorates my work with new ideas and inspiration and challenges me to think and dream in new ways.