Chief Equity Officer
Zan Gibbs is currently serving as the Chief Equity Officer for the City of San Antonio. In this position, Zan oversees citywide equity work that spans all Departments, with the goal of advancing equity in budgeting, community engagement, program and service delivery. The Office of Equity develops, implements and supports a variety of equity and inclusion initiatives, including the creation and application of key tools and trainings. In 2017 the City of San Antonio adopted its first annual budget incorporating equity budget concepts and continues to apply a Budget Equity Tool every year with every City Department.
Prior to this Zan was the Equity and Inclusion Program Manager for the Portland Bureau of Transportation in Oregon for three years, and initially came to doing equity work within the public sector after spending twenty years working on various racial and social justice initiatives in the non-profit sector. This included designing racial justice community led active transportation programs in public housing programs, leading racial justice trainings and retreats for various non-profit organizations, religious and academic institutions, and doing community organizing around displacement and gentrification issues.
At the age 21, Zan founded and then directed for twelve years, a high-risk youth resource center, which also earned Zan the Skidmore Prize in 2007 for designing and implementing innovative youth empowerment models. Zan is also a co-founder of the Portland chapter of Showing up For Racial Justice, and designed a unique model for building up white allies in the racial justice movement though core team and cohort models.
Zan has been a keynote speaker, facilitated multi-day racial justice retreats for environmental organizations from all over the country with the Center for Diversity and the Environment, delivered interrupting oppression and racial justice ally workshops with Western States Center, has a Master’s in Public Health with an emphasis on cross-cultural program design, and has used some of those skills to train community health workers in Rwanda, Africa, on utilizing smartphones to track and report on health equity data.
Zan is passionate about bicycling, backpacking, and is an avid fan of Ted Talks.