Diahann Billings-Burford recently joined Time Warner Inc. as Executive Director, Corporate Responsibility. In this newly created role, Billings-Burford serves as a senior member of the Corporate Responsibility management team and has primary responsibility for the strategic direction and implementation of Time Warner Inc.’s company-wide college internship program, the programs and resources they provide to stimulate and support employee community engagement, and their community investments in New York City.
For five years as Chief Service Officer for the City of New York, Billings-Burford headed NYC Service, a division of the Mayor’s Office with the mission of tapping the power of the people to meet pressing challenges. NYC Service met the Mayor’s State of the City pledge for New York City to lead the way in answering President Obama’s nationwide call to service. The NYC Service program had three main goals: help more New Yorkers connect to service opportunities more easily, target volunteers to address the city’s greatest needs, and promote service as a core part of what it means to be a citizen of New York. NYC Service implemented 25 initiatives to meet these goals in six impact areas: strengthening communities, helping neighbors in need, education, environment, health, and emergency preparedness. Since its inception in April of 2009, NYC Service has engaged over 1.3 million New Yorkers in a wide range of volunteer activities.
Prior to this appointment, Billings-Burford served as Deputy Executive Director of External Affairs for City Year New York, a national service not-for-profit organization dedicated to engaging young people 17-24 in increasing graduation rates in some of the City’s most challenging schools. In that position, she established and maintained relationships with politicians, community leaders and stakeholders and oversaw Recruitment and Communications. Before City Year New York, she served as the Director of External Affairs (NY) for Achievement First, a charter school management organization with the mission of opening and operating high-quality, public charter schools focused on closing the achievement gap in urban areas. There, Billings-Burford lead the efforts to open 4 charter school academies in Central Brooklyn. She has served as a board member of Achievement First Charter School for the past 5 years.
Billings-Burford spent over 5 years at Prep for Prep, a New York-based leadership development organization where she served in various capacities, including Director of College Guidance and Director of Leadership Development Opportunities. She has also worked as a middle school history teacher, curriculum developer, and a corporate attorney at the firm Simpson, Thatcher and Bartlett, LLP. She graduated from Yale University in 1994 with a B.A. in Psychology and a certificate in Teacher’s Preparation, and received the Nguza Saba Award for Political and Social Leadership in the same year. She was a White House Intern in the Office of National Service in 1993, under the Clinton Administration. In 2002, she earned her J.D. from Columbia School of Law and served as a Public Service Fellow, interning at the United States Attorney Office for the Southern District of New York. Billings-Burford is also a member of the Emmanuel Baptist Church in Clinton Hill, Brooklyn and a member of the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority. She currently serves as a board member for buildOn and the New York City Housing Authority.