Prosper Waco welcomes new director of research and community impact

Prosper Waco is pleased to announce the hiring of Emily Hunt-Hinojosa as director of research and community impact. Hunt-Hinojosa, Ph.D., will develop and expand a framework for assessing progress toward community goals and will benchmark progress in the Prosper Waco focus areas of education, health and financial security.

Hunt-Hinojosa’s duties will also include linking theory to practice across the community by helping to create an culture of continuous quality improvement around the larger vision of flourishing that Prosper Waco seeks to promote.

“A vital precursor to collective impact is collective understanding,” Hunt-Hinojosa explained. “As a sociologist, I see much of my new role as using data to highlight the pathways and connections between problems and solutions that are not always obvious. I am thrilled to join the Prosper Waco team and look forward to telling Greater Waco’s story in a way that is honest about current social realities and hopeful about our progress toward being a community where all members can thrive.”

Hunt-Hinojosa was most recently employed as a research fellow at the Institute for Advanced Studies in Culture, where she pursued academic research on cultural conflicts arising from different perspectives on the purpose of civic education. During her Ph.D. program, she served as a research analyst at Baylor University’s Center for Community Research and Development. In this role, Hunt-Hinojosa conducted a variety of qualitative and quantitative research projects for Waco organizations, helping institutions across McLennan County use data to do good better.

Prior to graduate studies at Baylor, Hunt-Hinojosa directed a service learning program at Creighton University, where she connected college student volunteers with nonprofits around the metro Omaha region. Hunt-Hinojosa’s sociological perspective and her previous experience related to assessment and evaluation make her uniquely qualified for her new role at Prosper Waco.

Hunt-Hinojosa has a Ph.D. in sociology from Baylor University, where she specialized in community analytics. She earned a master’s in sociology from Baylor and a master’s. in higher education and student development from Taylor University. She also has a bachelor’s degree in social studies education from Taylor.

Prosper Waco is a collective impact initiative focused on addressing issues facing the Greater Waco community in education, health and financial security. As a facilitator and convener, Prosper Waco encourages collaboration among nonprofits, city and county governments, business, foundations, and churches to build on and increase the effectiveness of current efforts and to develop new strategies to bring about measurable and sustainable positive change.