Karan Chopra, COO at Cervest, and Rhonda Morris, CHRO at Chevron, join board as national nonprofit expands across regions and industries to unlock opportunity for the 70+ million U.S. workers Skilled Through Alternative Routes (STARs)
WASHINGTON – Today, social enterprise Opportunity@Work named two new additions to their Board of Directors. Karan Chopra, Chief Operating Officer at Cervest and Rhonda Morris, Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer at Chevron Corporation will join current board members Reid Hoffman (chair), co-founder of LinkedIn and Partner at Greylock, Anne-Marie Slaughter, CEO of New America, and Byron Auguste, CEO & Co-Founder of Opportunity@Work.
These additions come as the nonprofit continues its work on behalf of the 70+ million workers Skilled Through Alternative Routes (STARs) such as community college, partial college completion, military service, workforce training programs, skills bootcamps, and learning on the job — rather than through a bachelor’s degree. Over the last year, Opportunity@Work has released new insights on STARs, expanded its STARs talent marketplace Stellarworx into new markets, and has stood up a new facet of its work – the STARs Studio.
“As Opportunity@Work continues to grow as an organization, expanding our geographic and industry reach, it’s valuable to build out our board and tap into a diverse set of capabilities and experiences in a changing economy,” said Auguste. “Both in their own unique career journeys and leadership profiles, and their commitment to inclusion in alignment with our mission, Karan Chopra and Rhonda Morris will add new perspectives and reinforce our board’s vital strength and cohesion.”
A co-founder of Opportunity@Work, Karan Chopra is now bringing his passion for our mission to bear as a Board member. An entrepreneur and executive who has scaled high-impact ventures, Chopra is currently COO of Cervest – the Climate Intelligence company working to put climate at the core of every decision. In this role he is working to empower enterprises, governments and NGOs to adapt with climate change by providing the most comprehensive view possible of climate risk on any asset, anywhere. Previously, he co-founded, scaled and sold a leading agribusiness in West Africa and has served on the advisory and governing boards of venture-backed startups and nonprofits worldwide. Chopra was named in the 2014 list of Forbes 30 under 30 Social Entrepreneurs by Forbes magazine and selected as a New Voices Fellow at the Aspen Institute.
“We need to expand access to opportunity so that going to college or having connections are not the only pathways to a meaningful career,” says Chopra. “We can no longer be blind to the reality that our economy does not work for a majority of workers, especially for people of color. Now is the time to build a more hopeful, inclusive and prosperous future where STARs can learn and earn to their full potential – the mission on which we founded Opportunity@Work. I look forward to continuing this work as a board member.”
An industry leader in talent management, Morris is Vice President and CHRO for Chevon, a leading, integrated energy company, and brings 30 years of HR leadership experience to the Opportunity@Work board. She is responsible for shaping and driving Chevron’s people and culture strategy, including diversity and inclusion, workforce planning, and more. Morris is the first Black female corporate officer at Chevron and has received several distinguished honors and awards, including the National Diversity Institute’s Most Influential African American in Business; the San Francisco Business Times’ Most Influential Women in Bay Area Business; and Black Enterprise’s Most Powerful Women in Corporate America. In 2021, Morris was inducted as a fellow in the National Academy of Human Resources, the highest honor granted in the HR profession.
“As someone with decades of experience in human resources and talent strategy, I’ve seen first-hand the powerful contributions of workers Skilled Through Alternative Routes – STARs,” says Morris. “Two of the greatest influences in my life were STARS; my father was an auto mechanic, and my grandfather was a refinery worker who cleaned storage tanks for Exxon. Neither had a college degree, but both were able to translate their skills into stable, good-paying jobs that allowed them to support their families. I look forward to partnering with Opportunity@Work to develop new and different ways to expose the ingenuity and creative problem solving STARS can bring to the workplace – if we remove barriers blocking their path.”
As Opportunity@Work builds the innovative infrastructure needed to connect more workers who are STARs to middle-wage jobs, the organization is slated for another year of critical movement-building and catalytic partnership expansion, as well as leveraging groundbreaking research to shift perceptions on STARs. Since January, Opportunity@Work released a new research report Rise with the STARs and Spotlight on Black STARs: and was profiled in the New York Times, Marketplace, and Bloomberg.
Opportunity@Work is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization whose mission is enable at least 1 million working adults in America to translate their learning into earning – generating a $20 billion boost in annual earnings.. Opportunity@Work engages with corporate, philanthropic, and workforce partners to directly address the barriers that STARs face, recognize STARs talent and remove bachelor’s degree screens. Learn more at www.opportunityatwork.org.