People in the News (09/23/18): Appointments, Promotions, Obituaries

 People in the News (09/23/18): Appointments, Promotions, Obituaries

The trustees of the Jessie Ball duPont Fund in Jacksonville, Florida, have announced the selection of MARI KURAISHI, co-founder and president of GlobalGiving, as the fund’s next president. Under her leadership, GlobalGiving, a pioneering global crowdfunding platform founded in 2002, has supported more than $340 million in giving by more than 814,000 donors to more than 20,000 projects worldwide and was cited by Forbes as one of the “Ten Startups Changing the World.” Prior to co-founding GlobalGiving, Kuraishi led the Corporate Strategy Group at the World Bank, where she was responsible for setting corporate priorities and engendering business innovation and also was the country anchor and officer for the bank’s Russia program. Kuraishi currently chairs the boards of GuideStar USA, DataKind, and APOPO US, and is a member of the board of advisors for the Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies, Harvard University.

The Heising-Simons Foundation in Los Altos, California, has announced ANGIE JUNCK as its first ever director of human rights. Junck, whose first day in her new role will be December 3, comes to the foundation with expertise in immigration and criminal law and policy, most recently serving as the supervising attorney and director of immigrant defense programs at the Immigrant Legal Resource Center (ILRC) in San Francisco, where she was in charge of the organization’s state and federal policy agenda, incubated and led multi-issue collaboratives and campaigns, and engaged a variety of partners in work that resulted in state and local models and policies that address criminalization, incarceration, and deportation. She also served on the American Bar Association’s Immigration Commission for six years and currently serves as co-chair of the ABA’s Criminal Justice Section’s Immigration Committee and as an advisory member for a number of organizations and networks, including the California Alliance for Youth and Community Justice, the Center for Immigration and Child Welfare, and the California Coalition for Women Prisoners.

The Surdna Foundation in New York City has announced the appointment of MEKAELIA DAVIS as director of its Inclusive Economies program, effective November 12. In that role, Davis will lead a $9.2 million annual grantmaking program and oversee a $9 million program-related investment portfolio. Davis joins Surdna from Prudential Financial, where she has served as director of corporate giving since 2015. Prior to joining Prudential, she worked at the Aspen Institute, where she managed policy and program strategies aimed at reducing generational poverty and examined innovative ways to align resources across postsecondary education, workforce development, and criminal justice systems. She has also served in roles at the Annie E. Casey Foundation and Sponsors for Educational Opportunity.

The New York City-based Planned Parenthood Federation of America has announced patient advocate and emergency physician LEANA WEN as its next president — the first time in nearly fifty years that a physician will helm the organization.  Dr. Wen currently serves as the commissioner of health for the City of Baltimore and has led the Baltimore City Health Department — the oldest, continuously-operated health department in the United States — since January 2015. Known as the "Doctor for the City" in Baltimore, she oversees more than 1,000 employees with an annual budget of $130 million; two clinics that provide more than 18,000 patients with reproductive health services; and medical programs for 180 Baltimore schools. Wen was born in Shanghai, China, immigrated to the United States with her family just before her eighth birthday, and graduated summa cum laude from California State University, Los Angeles at the age of 18, earning her medical degree from Washington University School of Medicine before becoming a Rhodes Scholar. She obtained her master’s degrees at the University of Oxford and completed her residency training at Brigham & Women’s Hospital and Massachusetts General Hospital, where she was a clinical fellow at Harvard Medical School. Dr. Wen has received recognition as one of Modern Healthcare’s 50 Most Influential Physician Executives and Leaders and a Top 25 Minority Executive in Healthcare. A Fellow of the American Academy of Emergency Medicine and Academy of Medicine, she serves on the faculty at the George Washington University School of Medicine and the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. 

The New York City-based Global Impact Investing Network (GIIN) has announced the appointment of XAVIER DE SOUZA BRIGGS as its newest board member. Briggs is vice president of inclusive economies and markets at the Ford Foundation, where his role includes overseeing the foundation’s impact investing as well as programming in inclusive economic growth, the future of work, natural resources and climate change, and affordable housing. He also is responsible for overseeing the foundation’s regional teams in Asia and West Africa. Prior to his role at Ford, Briggs was a professor of sociology and urban planning at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he served as head of the Housing, Community, and Economic Development Group. An award-winning author and educator, Briggs served as associate sirector of the Office of Management and Budget in the Obama White House and as policy adviser and R&D director at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development in the Clinton administration.

Education software company LearnZillion and GlobalGiving have announced that ALIX GUERRIER, co-founder and president of LearnZillion for the past seven years, will become CEO of GlobalGiving starting November 1. Guerrier is joining GlobalGiving, the first, and largest, global crowdfunding community for nonprofits, as it is sharpening its mission to transform aid and philanthropy to accelerate community-led change worldwide. At LearnZillion, he helped build the company's robust subscription platform and curricular offerings and played a leading role in developing a strong management team. The company will continue to build out and strengthening its offerings under the leadership of co-founder and CEO ERIC WESTENDORF.

The UNM Foundation and the University of New Mexico have announced that after nine years as CEO and president of the UNM Foundation, HENRY NEMCIK has decided to retire. Nemcik has overseen the growth of the UNM endowment from $258.9 million to $454.9 million and has personally raised over $30 million in gifts for the university. Prior to joining the UNM Foundation in 2010, he served as vice president of development and alumni relations and president of the foundation at the University of Tennessee system and as associate vice president for development and campaign director at Texas A&M. He plans to remain in his current role until a new CEO is hired and the transition is complete. 

BILL BUCKNER, president and chief executive officer of the Noble Research Institute in Ardmore, Oklahoma, has announced his decision to retire at the end of the year. Buckner was selected as Noble's eighth president in 2011 and led the organization, which originally was known as the Samuel Roberts Noble Foundation, as it separated its research and education operations from its philanthropic activities. During his tenure, the Noble expanded its educational and community service efforts, dove deeper into cover crop research, established a Land Stewardship Program, and re-established soil health as a core competency. In recent years, Buckner has spearheaded the creation of the Ecosystem Services Market, an ambitious effort to incentivize farmers and ranchers to improve soil health systems through a large-scale program that would finance, generate, and sell ecosystem service credits from agricultural working lands. "When you meet Bill Buckner, you know one thing for sure: he loves agriculture. He is a passionate advocate for the sector," said Russell "Rusty" Noble, a member of the board of director's executive committee and founder Lloyd Noble's grandson. "During his time at Noble, Bill worked tirelessly to promote soil health and create innovative new solutions that could open up new opportunities for farmers and ranchers. The Noble Foundation board of directors and all the employees offer a whole-hearted thanks to Bill for all of his work."

"Fund Names Mari Kuraishi as Next President; Term Begins in 2019." Jessie Ball duPont Fund News Release 09/18/2018. "Introducing Our New Director of Human Rights." Heising-Simons Foundations News Release 09/19/2018. "Mekaelia Davis Joins the Surdna Foundation as Director, Inclusive Economies." Surdna Foundation News Release 09/21/2018. "Global Impact Investing Network Appoints Xavier de Souza Briggs as New Board Member." Global Impact Investing Network Press Release 09/18/2019. "Dr. Leana Wen to Serve as President of Planned Parenthood." Planned Parenthood Federation of America Press Release 09/12/2018. "LearnZillion Co-Founder and President to Become CEO of GlobalGiving." Cision Press Release 09/11/2018. "UNM Foundation President & CEO Henry Nemcik Announces Retirement." University of New Mexico News Release 09/13/2018. "Noble Research Institute President Sets Retirement Date." Noble Research Institute News Release 09/18/2018.