The Arizona We Want
Darcy Renfro joined the Center for the Future of Arizona as its inaugural Director of The Arizona We Want March 2014. Since 2008, she served as the founding Director of the Arizona STEM Network at Science Foundation Arizona. Ms. Renfro led the statewide Network to advance, align, integrate, and embed Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) principles and practices benchmarked to international standards at all levels of Arizona’s education system.
Previously, Ms. Renfro served as the Policy Advisor to Governor Janet Napolitano for economic development and higher education. As an advisor to the Governor, she was responsible for shaping policies important to Arizona’s current and future economic vitality. This work included initiatives focused on innovation, job creation, and diversification of Arizona’s economic base through better linkage of higher education and industry, with an emphasis on accelerating the core research and technology competencies to increase Arizona’s global competitiveness.
Ms. Renfro served as the Governor’s primary contact for science, technology and education alignment, including the development of Science Foundation Arizona and the Governor’s P-20 Council, linking education policy and practice from early grades through employment. She was a lead policy advisor to Governor Napolitano during her term as Chair of the National Governors Association where she spearheaded an initiative to increase states’ innovation capacity called “Innovation America.”
Ms. Renfro also served as Assistant Deputy Director for Workforce Development at the Arizona Department of Commerce focusing on the link between economic development, education, and employment statewide.
Prior to joining Commerce in 2003, Ms. Renfro practiced law in the areas of governmental relations, utility regulation, and general litigation with the Phoenix office of Fennemore Craig. She also worked on staff for Senators Dennis DeConcini (AZ) and Howard Metzenbaum (OH) in Washington D.C.
Ms. Renfro is a native of Tucson and received both her undergraduate and juris doctorate degrees from the University of Arizona.