Jennifer Rizzo-Choi

Executive Director, International Institute of Buffalo

A recent board member of the International Institute of Buffalo and experienced nonprofit leader, Jennifer Rizzo-Choi currently serves as the International Institute of Buffalo’s executive director. She has more than a decade in law, public policy, media, refugee resettlement and immigration services, and nonprofit management. She previously served as legal director for Journey’s End in Buffalo. Drawing on her legal education and a decade of experience in journalism and media on assignments across the US and Europe, she launched the organization’s legal aid program, raising over $1 million from new grant lines, establishing a walk-in clinic, and hiring and leading a team that handled over 500 immigration legal cases each year. She then left Western New York to join Human Rights First in Washington, DC, where she developed and led a national pro-bono program to expand legal representation for immigrants around the country, working closely with the Obama White House and establishing field offices and coalitions in Texas, Louisiana, and Georgia. She then served as executive director of The Pro Bono Project in New Orleans, the state’s largest pro-bono legal services organization, where she successfully rehabilitated the organization’s brand and finances and leveraged relationships with area law firms. She left to pursue her passion for nonprofit leadership, earning an MBA at MIT’s Sloan School of Management and ultimately returning to Western New York, where she became a member of the Board of Directors of the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Western New York and joined the board at the International Institute, recently completing a five-year term.

Read More