Lawrence Cohen

Lawrence Cohen

President, FIRST

Lawrence Cohen is the president of the global nonprofit FIRST®, a robotics community that prepares young people for the future. Cohen is building on both extensive management and technology leadership experience and a passion for advancing STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) to help young people gain the skills they need to thrive through the mission of FIRST. He is dedicated to scaling FIRST programs to make hands-on learning opportunities available to even more students around the world – especially in underserved and underrepresented communities.

Cohen joined FIRST in 2019 after more than 30 years in various leadership roles driving business transformations, primarily in the areas of information technology and operations. Cohen was most recently Partner and Global Head of Operations and Technology at AllianceBernstein (AB), an asset management and research firm in New York. During his 13 years at AB, Cohen also held the roles of Executive VP, Global Head of Technology and Chief Technology Officer. Prior to AB, he led in executive management capacities at Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs and UBS.

Cohen, who holds a degree in Engineering and Applied Sciences from Harvard University, has a long history of both giving back to his local community and advancing global causes. He served for nearly a decade on the Board of Directors and Executive Advisory Board for FIRST program delivery partner NYC FIRST. He also serves as a mentor at Columbia University for the Master’s Program in Technology Management and as Past Chair of the Board of Directors for Bridges to Prosperity, an organization dedicated to eradicating poverty caused by rural isolation.