The Haynes Foundation
888 West Sixth Street, Suite 1150
Los Angeles, California 90017-2737
(213) 623-9151
(213) 623-3951

Executive Director

Raphael J. Sonenshein, Ph.D.
Executive Director
The John Randolph Haynes and Dora Haynes Foundation

Introducing Raphael J. Sonenshein, Ph.D.: Pioneering Urban Scholar and The Haynes Foundation’s First
Executive Director

The Haynes trustees are thrilled to welcome Dr. Raphael “Raphe” Sonenshein as the newly appointed Executive Director of the Haynes Foundation, marking a significant milestone in our organization’s history. Joining us in Summer 2023, Dr. Sonenshein brings with him a wealth of experience and expertise, making him the ideal leader to steer our foundation forward.

Before joining the Haynes Foundation, Dr. Sonenshein served as the Executive Director of the Pat Brown Institute for Public Affairs. He holds a B.A. in public policy from Princeton, followed by his M.A. and Ph.D. in political science from Yale University.

A trailblazing urban scholar, Dr. Sonenshein is widely recognized for his insights into Los Angeles politics and government. The author of three critically acclaimed books in this field, he has been at the forefront of groundbreaking research on racial and ethnic coalitions, big city politics and government, and charter reform. As a highly regarded and influential researcher, his work has had a transformative impact on advancing accessible governance and strengthening democracy, resonating far beyond the City of Angels. Throughout his career, Dr. Sonenshein has been actively engaged in improving governance structures and empowering urban communities. His dedication to broadening and strengthening urban democracy has earned him admiration and respect from community leaders, policy makers, philanthropic leaders, and scholars alike.

As the first Executive Director of the Haynes Foundation, Dr. Sonenshein will undoubtedly bring visionary leadership, innovative ideas, and a genuine commitment to seeking solutions to complex regional challenges and fostering positive change. His keen understanding of urban complexities and the challenges faced by our region’s diverse communities will guide our foundation in supporting vital research and initiatives that can shape a better future for all.

For inquiries, collaborations, or to connect with Dr. Sonenshein, feel free to reach out at or call 213.623.9159.