As President and CEO of the Urban Resource Institute (URI), Nathaniel Fields is responsible for leading the organization’s long-and short-term strategy and the implementation of its vision and mission.
Informed by nearly two decades of practical work and achievement in social and human services, Nathaniel has spearheaded the transformation of the URI in size, scope and services for vulnerable populations in New York City, particularly victims of domestic violence. Since taking the helm of the organization in 2012, he has transformed it into a dynamic, multi-service agency, nearly tripling the budget and building it into the largest provider of domestic violence shelter services in the country.
Under his leadership, Nathaniel has focused on innovation, exemplified by his advancement of groundbreaking programs, such as People and Animals Living Safely (PALS), Legal Education Advocacy Program (LEAP), Working Internship Network (WIN), Abusive Partner Intervention Program (APIP), and more. To further his vision, Nathaniel is committed to a Culture of Excellence and an environment with data-driven, measurable outcomes.
Born and raised in New York, Nathaniel has firsthand knowledge of the challenges affecting New York’s most vulnerable communities, as well as the positive work being done to effect structural changes. Working directly with marginalized groups, Nathaniel saw that when investments are made in communities, they can thrive.
Nathaniel holds a bachelor’s degree in history with a focus on black and Hispanic studies and a Master of Social Work degree from Fordham University. He completed an executive leadership and certificate program in the not-for-profit sector at New York University. He also sits on the Board of the Human Services Council, and has led the New York City Coalition of Domestic Violence Residential Providers as co-chair for over ten years.
At URI, Nathaniel enjoys being part of a community of people committed to improving the lives of others. When asked to identify his vision for URI, he states, “Hope is at the cornerstone of everything we do.”
Phyllis Arnold is the General Counsel of Urban Resource Institute and has practiced law for more than 30 years. She previously served as Deputy Commissioner and General Counsel for the NYC Department of Buildings. Additionally, she taught at St. John’s and NYU Schools of Law. She has also been a litigator for the City and State of New York and has worked in the private and non-profit sectors. She holds a J.D. from the Columbia University School of Law.
Lisa Aguilera del Puerto is an attorney with almost 20 years’ experience as a New York City real estate attorney. She represented clients from around the world and often conducted closings in Spanish. Her diverse background includes working at government agencies and in media, and as general counsel for an international management consulting firm, establishing corporate policy for the company, drafting and negotiating multi-national consulting, intellectual property and employment agreements. Most recently she was a vice president at Morgan Stanley in the Global Market Risk Management Department, charged with ensuring that the department’s risk governance and oversight were compliant with regulatory guidelines and best practices. In addition to her work at URI, Lisa is on the board of a local nonprofit and an NGO in Rwanda. She is a graduate of Smith College and earned her Juris Doctor from Hofstra University School of Law. Lisa lives in Brooklyn, NY with her family and spends her free time skiing in the winter, going to the theater, reading, and traveling.