Canales recently celebrated his twentieth anniversary with Irvine and has served as the foundation's president since 2003. During his tenure, Canales helped the San Francisco-based foundation, which works to expand opportunity for the people of California, develop a more targeted grantmaking approach, focusing its resources on the arts, democracy, and youth. To that end, the foundation provided leadership in building the field of Linked Learning, contributed to a more effective system of governance and fiscal policy for California, and reoriented its arts programming to promote greater engagement with the arts among all Californians.
For the past fifteen years, the Barr Foundation has focused the majority of its resources locally in the areas of public education, climate change, and arts and culture. In 2010, the foundation also launched a pilot program in global giving. As president, Canales will lead a strategic planning process to explore how the foundation might grow, leverage its local work, scale good ideas, and extend its impact regionally, nationally, and internationally while retaining its commitment to the Boston area.
"I am excited about this next chapter in my professional life," said Canales. "I am honored to have been invited to join Barbara and Amos Hostetter as the third trustee of the Barr Foundation and to help shape the next chapter of the foundation’s work. The values of humility, excellence, and rigor that the Hostetters bring to the Barr Foundation align so well with my own perspectives about how philanthropy can have the greatest impact."