Carol Cohen

Assistant Director Community & Environmental Services |

Carol Cohen joined RCAC in 2009. As an Assistant Director in RCAC’s Community & Environmental Services Department, she leads RCAC’s Building Rural Economies (BRE) program, which encompasses focus areas that include Smart Growth, Entrepreneurial Ecosystems, and Small Business Development. Ms. Cohen supervises BRE’s regional managers and staff and ensures the program’s contract deliverables within RCAC’s 13-state service area. She oversees program development and implementation, public and private partner relationship development, team building, and leadership training. Ms. Cohen also manages Tribal community development programs, including entrepreneur training and capacity building, for Northern California Tribes.

Ms. Cohen’s experience includes leading RCAC’s Regional Environmental Team in Idaho, Nevada, and Utah. She worked directly with USDA Rural Development, the Department of Environmental Quality, and Drinking Water and Clean Water State Revolving Loan Funds, leading the team in assisting rural and Tribal communities to increase their capacity to comply with clean drinking water, wastewater systems, and solid waste regulations. Previously, Ms. Cohen provided technical assistance to Community Housing Development Organizations (CHDOs), nonprofit affordable housing providers, community organizations, state agencies, and local governments. She has trained on the HOME program, USDA RD 502 Loan Packaging, Fair Housing, and Housing Planning in rural communities, capacity building, board training, strategic planning, resource development, and succession planning. Ms. Cohen also facilitated Enterprise Green Community charettes in Colorado and Hawaii.

Cohen holds a Master’s Degree in Public Administration, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT, and a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, Whitmore School of Business and Economics, University of New Hampshire.

Session One:   
Title: Open For Business: Train the Trainer
Day/Time: Wednesday, 8/17 | 2:00 – 5:00 pm
Part I: The Power of a Network – Launched in 2021 with funding from Wells Fargo and the Siegel Family Endowment, the Open for Business Program brings together the RCAP network’s expertise in growing opportunity and small businesses in rural and tribal communities for more than 40 years. 

Join members of the Open for Business working group to learn about how this initiative is helping the RCAP network to scale its expertise in serving rural Native, minority and women-owned businesses to all regions in our network, while building our internal capacity to co-develop and co-deliver training and support across organizations for greater impact.

Part II: How TAPs can get Involved – In part II of this session, TAPs will learn how they can help connect their communities with the Open for Business resources and support. 

Session Two:
Title: World Cafe – Why Community Economic Development is So Important
Day/Time: Thursday, 8/18 | 10:00 am – 12:00 pm
Description: Pathways to Prosperity: Why CED is so important to RCAP’s Mission