Carlos Lejnieks is Chief Executive Officer of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Essex, Hudson and Union counties and past chair of Big Brothers Big Sisters of New Jersey. Carlos has helped strengthen and expand the agency in his 15-year tenure. Under his leadership, BBBS received numerous awards, including a formal recognition by President Barack Obama. In 2018, he rang the Closing Bell at the New York Stock Exchange in honor of his 10th anniversary at BBBS.
Carlos harnessed his grassroots experience to advise on state and federal policy related to youth and family support, including service on the New Jersey Governor’s Council to advocate for families most impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Carlos also served on President Obama’s Regional Finance Committee and on Governor Chris Christie, Governor Phil Murphy, and Newark Mayor Cory Booker’s transition teams.
Earlier in his career, Carlos served as a school administrator in Newark and held positions at Goldman Sachs and CN Communications. A purpose-driven volunteer, Carlos is a co-founder and trustee of Democracy Prep Public Schools based in Harlem, N.Y. He is chair of the Jersey City Medical Center board of trustees, a board member at New Jersey City University (NJCU), board of regents member of Saint Peter’s University, a recipient of the Aspen Foundation’s emerging leaders fellowship, and winner of the 2018 American Express Leadership Academy Alumni Award.
A former collegiate wrestler, Carlos is active with his alma mater serving as a trustee of Brown University. He became president-elect of the Brown Alumni Association in 2019 and is Brown’s first person of Latinx heritage to serve in this role. Carlos holds a bachelor’s degree from Brown University, a Master of Science degree from the London School of Economics, and an Honorary Doctorate from Saint Peter’s University. In 2014, he was given the inaugural Presidential Medallion from NJCU for his service to the community.