About Ian Rowe

Ian Rowe

Ian Rowe is a Resident Fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, where he focuses on upward mobility, education, family formation, and adoption. Mr. Rowe is a social entrepreneur with more than thirty years of experience founding and leading organizations in the public, private, and non-profit sectors that empower young people to effect positive change in their own lives. He is the co-founder of Vertex Partnership Academies, a new network of character-based, International Baccalaureate high schools opening in the Bronx in 2022 and Chairman of the Board of Spence Chapin, one of the nation’s premier adoption agencies.

Mr. Rowe concurrently serves as a Senior Visiting Fellow at the Woodson Center, writer for the 1776 Unites Campaign, and co-founder of the National Summer School Initiative. Mr. Rowe is the former ten-year CEO of Public Prep, a network of public charter schools educating more than 2,000 students in the South Bronx and Lower East Side of Manhattan. Before joining AEI, Mr. Rowe served as the Deputy Director of Postsecondary Success at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Senior Vice President of Strategic Partnerships & Public Affairs at MTV (where he won two Public Service Emmy Awards), and led campaigns such as Choose or Lose, Fight For Your Rights, and Get Schooled. Additionally, Mr. Rowe is the Director of Strategy & Performance Measurement at USA Freedom Corps in the White House, overseeing domestic volunteering efforts in the aftermath of 9/11.

Mr. Rowe is a proud product of the New York City public school system. He earned his B.S. in Computer Science Engineering from Cornell University and his MBA from Harvard Business School, where he was the first black Editor-in-Chief of the Harbus, the Harvard Business School newspaper. Mr. Rowe’s work has been published in outlets such as the Wall Street Journal and the Washington Examiner. He is the author of a forthcoming book tentatively entitled Agency (Templeton Press), which seeks to inspire young people of all races to build strong families and become masters of their own destiny.

Essays by Ian Rowe: