As President and CEO of the UNO Research and Technology Foundation — a 501(c)3 that serves as a public-private partner with the University of New Orleans — Rebecca is charged with leading the new era of the Foundation and the management and development of its greatest asset, the newly rebranded research park — The Beach at UNO, a Sandbox for Collaboration. Working closely with the Foundation’s board of directors, staff and the university, Rebecca is implementing a plan to create an environment at The Beach that is entrepreneurial and community-driven, where people come together to solve complex social, scientific and business breakthroughs for the New Orleans and Gulf region.
Rebecca’s career has been defined by her civic and professional leadership in service to the Greater New Orleans region. Prior to joining the Research and Technology Foundation, Conwell served as the Executive Director of the New Orleans Recreation Development Foundation, and as the Senior Advisor for Economic Development for Mayor Mitch Landrieu and the City of New Orleans where she was instrumental in strengthening the city’s economic development functions, attracting new businesses, overseeing the city’s incentive offerings.
Additionally, Rebecca spent 14 years working at Tulane University, serving as Executive Director of State and Local Governmental Affairs, Chief of Staff for the University President, and Interim Executive Director of the Cowen Institute, a think tank for K-12 education in New Orleans.
Throughout her career, Rebecca has been appointed to and served on numerous local and regional boards and advisory bodies including United Way of Southeast Louisiana’s Women’s Leadership Council, Son of a Saint’s Inaugural Advisory Committee, NOLA BA’s Board of Directors, New Orleans Regional Business Park’s Board of Commissioners and Kingsley House’s Board of Directors. Additionally, Rebecca was an early mentor for the Justice & Accountability Center at Propeller, a Force for Social Innovation and has been recognized by several local publications for her leadership.
Rebecca holds a Bachelor of Business Administration in Finance from Lamar University. Additionally, she is a graduate of Leadership Louisiana and Loyola University’s Institute of Politics.