People in the News (9/18/16): Appointments, Promotions, Obituaries

People in the News (9/18/16): Appointments, Promotions, Obituaries

The Heising-Simons Foundation in Los Altos, California, has welcomed DEVRA WANG as director of its Climate and Energy program. Wang most recently served as a program director at the Energy Foundation, where she managed the organization’s "utility of the future" and energy efficiency strategies and grantmaking, and prior to that served for more than a decade as director of the California Energy Program at the Natural Resources Defense Council.

The Office of Cooperative Research at Yale University has announced ERIKA R. SMITH as director of the Blavatnik Fund for Innovation at Yale, a new fund established with a $10 million grant from the Blavatnik Family Foundation that will support efforts to turn Yale faculty discoveries into life science treatments, drugs, and devices. Smith, who steps into the role after having served as deputy director of the Yale Entrepreneurial Institute, a department launched by OCR in 2007 to help entrepreneurs and innovators at Yale start scalable new ventures, will continue to oversee the Business of Biotech series, which offers core skills and building blocks for translating research to faculty and research staff at Yale and UConn.

The National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy has announced the promotion of JEANNE ISLER, its field director since early 2014, to the position of vice president for learning and engagement. In that role, a new one for the organization, Isler will spearhead NCRP's efforts to ensure that its members and allies are engaged with the organization as it strives to make philanthropy more responsive to those with the least wealth, power, and opportunity. Prior to joining NCRP, Isler served as director of U.S. programs at Search for Common Ground, organized nonprofit organizations in North Carolina working to assist military families involved in the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, led a restorative justice program for New Hanover County (NC) Public Schools, and worked as a faith-based community organizer in Ohio and Florida. 

The National YoungArts Foundation in Miami, Florida, has announced the appointment of JEWEL MALONE as chief operating officer. In that role, Malone will work alongside newly appointed President/CEO Carolina Garcia Jayaram to help the organization realize its vision and activate the YoungArts campus as a vital asset for artists in Miami's burgeoning arts and culture community. Malone comes to YoungArts from Chicago, where she most recently served as COO of the Chicago Children's Choir, one of the nation's largest choral music education organizations. Prior to joining CCC, she served as deputy commissioner for the City of Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events, where she was instrumental in the creation and development of the 2012 Chicago Cultural Plan, and served as vice president for corporate responsibility and global philanthropy for JPMorgan Chase, where she stewarded over $14 million in grants toward community development, education, and arts and culture programs.

The Philadelphia-based William Penn Foundation has announced that LAURA SPARKS, its executive director since 2014, will be transitioning out of her role at the foundation to serve as the first female president of the Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art in New York City. To ensure a smooth transition, Sparks will remain as executive director of the foundation until later in the fall, when SHAWN McCANEY, director of Creative Communities & National Initiatives at the foundation, will step in as interim executive director until a permanent director is named.

The ALS Association Greater New York Chapter has announced that Founding President and CEO DORINE GORDON is retiring after twenty-three years in the position and will be succeeded by JUDITH ARNER BROWN, a former chief development officer of the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of America. Gordon started the chapter in 1994 after her mother lost her battle to ALS, and under her leadership it has become the largest chapter in the country, serving more than seven hundred and fifty people living with ALS and raising more than $6 million a year.

In other news, PND notes the passing of JOHN R. “JACK” COLEMAN, the ninth president of Haverford College and, later, president of the Edna McConnell Clark Foundation, at the age of 95. A native of Canada and World War II vet, Coleman received his B.A. from the University of Toronto, an M.A. and Ph.D. in economics from the University of Chicago, and went on to teach economics and labor relations at MIT from 1949 to 1955. He then spent a decade at Carnegie Mellon University, where he became head of the economics department and served as dean of the Division of Humanities and Social Sciences, and a sabbatical year in New Delhi, India, as a consultant for the Ford Foundation. He left Carnegie Mellon in 1965 to take a full-time post with Ford in New York as a program officer in charge of social development, and then, in 1967, took the helm at Haverford, becoming the school’s first non-Quaker president. As president, Coleman made the controversial decision to end Haverford’s football program and dropped a rule that barred students with long hair and beards from playing on intercollegiate teams. In 1973, he made more news when word got out he’d taken a "secret" sabbatical, during which he went incognito to haul trash in a small town in Maryland, make sandwiches in a Boston restaurant, and dig sewer lines in Atlanta. Coleman wrote about those experiences in the 1974 book Blue Collar JournalA College President’s Sabbatical, which became the basis for a 1978 made-for-TV movie titled The Secret Life of John Chapman. During his tenure as president, Coleman also played a central role in the debate over whether Haverford should go co-ed, which it did, in 1980, after he had moved on to EMCF. "Every time I saw Jack Coleman at College events —and he attended many, and as recently as this year's Alumni Weekend — I always thanked him for making it possible for me to be a student at Haverford," said Ann Figueredo '84, vice president for institutional advancement and a member of Haverford's first fully coed graduating class. "And every time I told him that, he'd break out in a huge smile."

"Introducing Our Director of Climate and Clean Energy." Heising-Simons Foundation Blog Post 09/12/2016. "Erika R. Smith Named Director of Blavatnik Fund for Innovation at Yale." Yale University, Office of Cooperative Research Press Release 09/08/2016. "Exciting Changes at NCRP: Jeanné Isler Promoted to VP, New Offices and More!." National Committee for Repsonsive Philanthropy Blog Post 09/13/2016. "Jewel D. Malone Appointed Chief Operating Officer of the National YoungArts Foundation." National YoungArts Foundation Press Release 09/15/2016. "William Penn Foundation Executive Director Laura Sparks to Transition to Higher Ed Later in the Fall." William Penn Foundation News Release 09/14/2016. "ALS Association Greater New York Chapter Founding President and CEO Dorine Gordon to Retire After More than 2 Decades." ALS Association Greater New York Chapter Email 09/15/2016. Matt Schudel. "John R. Coleman, College President Who Walked in Others’ Shoes, Dies at 95." Washington Post 09/10/2016. "John R. Coleman 1921–2016." Haverford College News Release