Jonathan T.M. Reckford

Chief Executive Officer, Habitat for Humanity International Jonathan was inspired by a professor in graduate school who said that the same skills that are needed in the for-profit world are essential in the nonprofit world. That idea, coupled with a mission trip working with the Dalits--people commonly called "untouchables" in India--convinced him that his life calling was to serve the poor. Experiences at companies such as Marriott, The Walt Disney Company and Best Buy each taught him valuable leadership lessons that have helped him guide Habitat for Humanity through tremendous growth. Jonathan is always quick to say that behind all the numbers of people that Habitat serves are individual stories of lives changed.

About this speaker

Jonathan T.M. Reckford is chief executive officer of Habitat for Humanity International, a global Christian housing organization that has helped more than 35 million people construct, rehabilitate or preserve their homes.


Since 2005, when he took the top leadership position, local Habitat organizations in all 50 states and in more than 70 countries have grown from serving 125,000 individuals each year to helping more than 5.9  million people last year build strength, stability and self-reliance through shelter.


Jonathan graduated from the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill where he was a Morehead Scholar. He was also the recipient of a Henry Luce Scholarship, which enabled him to do marketing work for the Seoul Olympic Organizing Committee and coach the Korean rowing team in preparation for the 1988 Olympics.


He earned his Master of Business Administration degree from the Stanford University Graduate School of Business before spending much of his career in the for-profit sector, including executive and managerial positions at Goldman Sachs, Marriott, The Walt Disney Co., and Best Buy. While serving as executive pastor at Christ Presbyterian Church near Minneapolis, Minn., he was recruited for the CEO position at Habitat.


Jonathan is the chair of Leadership 18 and is a member of the Freddie Mac Housing Advisory Council. He is also a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the Urban Steering Committee for the World Economic Forum.


Named the most influential nonprofit leader in America in 2017 by The NonProfit Times, Jonathan is the author of Our Better Angels: Seven Simple Virtues That Will Change Your Life and the World.


He and his wife, Ashley, have three children and live in Atlanta.



Contact This Speaker


Building Together: How Habitat for Humanity is Building Partnerships to Change the World

Jonathan T.M. Reckford