Boldly Go team
Sharp minds. Big hearts.
Meet our colleagues who go above and beyond to deliver results.
Nana Narmin Aliyeva
Nana is a specialist in international relations and law, speaker, former government advisor and restaurant owner. She has over 5 years of experience in international environments which were instrumental in molding a strong foundation and ideals for her career. She is determined to work towards global cooperation by means of creating reliable relationships and cultural understanding amongst the nations and individuals. Nana speaks fluent English, Azerbaijani, Russian, Turkish and a bit of French.
In 2017, Nana became the first person from Azerbaijan to be elected to run an international non-governmental organization. She became the Secretary General of ELSA – the largest young lawyers’ association in the world with the principal mission of internal governance. After completing her term in Belgium, she managed multiple government projects in Azerbaijan in youth policy implementation at the Youth Foundation. To increase youth employment in agriculture, Nana co-led a grassroots advocacy and education campaign as part of a project at the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization. Additionally, she has experience in the field of mission support and risk management working mainly in the United Kingdom.
As a Schwarzman Scholar, Nana earned her Master of Management Science in Global Affairs degree from the University of Tsinghua in Beijing, China and a Bachelor of Laws from Baku State University in Baku, Azerbaijan.
To nurture her creativity, in 2019 she opened a signature restaurant in Baku. Nana is currently working on several entrepreneurial projects and the law blog which she co-founded in 2018. She is a speaker at international conferences and a trainer on soft skills. Nana is very passionate about the topics of women’s empowerment and the effects of globalization alongside performing arts and Russian literature.
Nana is a highly adaptive advocacy & communications and project management professional with a proven record of building and developing relationships, managing projects from ‘embryo’ to delivery stages, designing educational programmes in multi-dimensional and multi-cultural contexts.
Grace strongly believes that every person irrespective of their background should have access to adequate resources in order to thrive and live a life of dignity. Her previous and current experiences which span across Business, Non-Profit and International Development has demonstrated this philosophy.
Whiles pursuing her undergraduate degree, she dedicated her time volunteering with numerous development projects including but not limited to Leap Africa (as a speaker empowering children especially girls in rural areas to stay in school), Starfish Aid (where she spent her time building libraries and teaching children in remote areas with no portable water, electricity and internet services), and the Let Girls Learn Initiative organized by IBM and Peace Corps as a mentor. In her Junior year, fueled by her personal story as a young woman from an economically disadvantaged background, Grace started the Bowney Initiative, a non-profit organization in Ghana that envisions a world where all girls have access to resources to unleash their full potential.
Prior to dedicating majority of her time at the Bowney Initiative, Grace worked as a Faculty Intern for Foundations of Design and Entrepreneurship at Ashesi University, a VP for strategic Growth and Business Development at Engboxx, a start-up Fintech firm in Ghana, and a researcher at the International Organization for Migration (IOM), Beijing office writing a discussion paper on the impact of the Belt and Road Initiative on Migration in Africa.
Through her leadership and work, she was awarded the 2015 Dalai Lama Fellowship, 2016 Bryon Fellowship, 2019 Milead Fellowship, 2019 Compassionate Leadership Fellowship, and a 2020 Empowered to Educate Fellowship. Grace holds a degree in Business Administration from Ashesi University as a MasterCard Foundation Scholar and a Msc. in Global Affairs from Tsinghua University as a Schwarzman Scholar. Grace is from Ghana.
Naaima Khan is a consultant and Owner and Principal of Create Good consulting, where she consults with organizations to help them achieve more effective, equity-centered strategy and evaluation planning.
Naaima has worked with nonprofits for 10+ years as a strategic planner/facilitator, content creator, grant program manager, evaluator and equity/inclusion leader. She holds a master’s in Public Affairs from the LBJ School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin. Naaima specializes in helping clients center equity in their strategic planning and evaluation by applying principles of antiracism, human-centered design and restorative practice. Naaima served as an advisor to St. Olaf College’s Lutheran Center for Faith, Community and Values and serves on the board of the Minnesota Evaluation Association.
She facilitates restorative justice circles to help divert community members from the court system.
- Former Executive Director, Peter Kiewit Foundation: $450m place-based private funder.
- Former McKinsey consultant, built and led FSG’s San Francisco office and education practice.
- Six years of on-the-ground education experience as a teacher in the South Bronx and a nonprofit director in Harlem.
Jeff Kutash started his career as a Teach For America corps member, teaching math at a public bilingual middle school in New York City. His students were all recent immigrants, and while he was teaching them math, they were teaching him the importance of hard work to overcome adversity and achieve big dreams. He left the classroom to revive the Harlem Educational Activities Fund, a dormant nonprofit serving youth in Harlem and Washington Heights. Jeff grew a small mentoring program into a college success pipeline that helped hundreds of youth finish high school, go to college, and get a degree. One of his proudest moments was when an early participant in his program finished college and became a teacher in the neighborhood she grew up in.
Between creating college prep programs and visiting students in their homes to help with college applications, Jeff married his college sweetheart, Jessica. Together, they went off to Harvard Business School — Jessica to advance her career in marketing, and Jeff to pick up a business skill set he thought was needed in the social sector. After getting his MBA, Jeff joined McKinsey & Company where he worked with financial services, tech, manufacturing, and retail clients. Helping Fortune 500 companies with their most critical business issues honed Jeff’s problem solving, communication, and client service skills, which he took with him to join The Bridgespan Group, a nonprofit consulting firm that helps funders and nonprofits create social impact.
In 2005, Jeff was recruited by The Seed Foundation to help open public college preparatory boarding schools in California. Jeff secured major pledges from donors, gained school district approvals, built broad community support, and ran legislation to fund the schools. And while the California budget crisis at the time put the project on hold, the groundwork was laid for The SEED School of Los Angeles, which will open its doors in 2022.
Jeff then joined Foundation Strategy Group (FSG), a nonprofit consulting firm focused on effective philanthropy and social impact. It was the perfect opportunity to combine his background in consulting with his entrepreneurial mindset. For the next seven years, Jeff led FSG’s San Francisco office, growing the team from two to over 30 professionals. He launched and built FSG’s national education practice, overseeing scores of consulting engagements with leading corporations, foundations, nonprofits, school districts, and government agencies. A few projects he is particularly proud of include helping reestablish New Orleans’ education system after hurricane Katrina and leading a statewide effort to reform New York’s juvenile justice system.
In 2013, Jeff and his family moved to Omaha, Nebraska where he became the CEO of the Peter Kiewit Foundation, a place-based private funder. Jeff crafted the foundation’s first strategic plan focused on education-to-career pathways, economic opportunity, and thriving and inclusive communities; transformed the foundation’s approach to grantmaking and evaluation; and retooled all operational functions. Jeff was responsible for $25-30M in annual grantmaking and led the foundation’s programmatic initiatives, community engagement, and operations. In that role, Jeff helped catalyze a $300M riverfront redevelopment, launch a regional transportation plan, and develop a statewide initiative on college success. After seven years at the foundation, Jeff left to found Boldly Go Philanthropy.
Jeff holds an MBA from Harvard Business School and a BA in Political Science from the University of Pennsylvania. He has served on the boards of the Greater Omaha Chamber, College Possible, National Center for Montessori in the Public Sector, and Great California Public Schools.
Jeff speaks around the country and writes on topics of effective philanthropy, corporate social responsibility, urban core and rural community development, effecting social change, and education. He is author of multiple papers and case studies including “Structuring Post-Secondary Scholarships to Increase Student Success,” “The School Turnaround Field Guide,” and “Practices From the Portfolio: Case Studies on Effective Education Practices.”
Jeff and Jessica are the proud parents of three awesome kids – Gabriel, Theara, and Holden. As a family, they love to travel, mountain bike, snowboard, and hike. In those rare moments when he is not working or coaching his kids’ sports teams, Jeff can be found curled up on a couch with a great book.
Patricia (Pah-tree-see-ah) Mayorga began her career in business in logistics and marketing roles before pursuing her passion to advance social justice. She led a suite of education and workforce initiatives in her hometown for the Greater Omaha Chamber including scaling an award-winning youth career exploration program. Most recently, she helped to modernize foundation operations and executive engagement for the Kiewit Companies Foundation. Under her leadership Kiewit also launched their first employee donation matching program – Kiewit Gives.
Patricia obtained a Certificate in Corporate Social Responsibility from the University of Colorado at Boulder and a B.A. in Communication Studies from the University of Nebraska at Omaha. She is currently pursuing a Master’s in Business Administration from Southern Methodist University as a Forté Fellow in Dallas, TX where she currently resides.
Sarah lives by the motto “leave a place better than you found it.” Most recently, she was a Business Development Lead at the environmental engagement SaaS company, Temboo. She developed the go-to-market strategy for a new product and designed environmental data collection systems for community-based, government and private organizations. At Walmart eCommerce, Sarah created a new model for identity-based employee resource groups that was replicated across several US offices. Previously, Sarah was the Business Development Lead at Saathi, an Indian biodegradable sanitary pad brand. She led the brand’s product launch and managed a NGO partnership to donate 25K pads to rural women and girls. Prior to Saathi, Sarah was a Fulbright English Teaching Assistant to Bahrain where she taught research skills and English language courses. She will graduate with her MMSc in Global Affairs at Tsinghua University in summer 2021, and has a BS in Mechanical Engineering from MIT.
- Former Executive Director, Walton Family Foundation: over $600 million in grantmaking per year.
- Built and led Foundation Strategy Group (FSG) for 14 years: advisor to philanthropists around the world.
- Ten years of global development experience in Africa: on-the-ground training for impact.
Kyle Peterson joined the Peace Corps right out of college and fell in love twice – first with his wife, a fellow volunteer, and the second time with the adventure of making a difference. While in Sierra Leone with the Peace Corps, Kyle helped farmers plant over 100,000 oil palm trees, witnessed a rich culture and heritage, experienced unjust inequities, and was inspired by everyday heroes.
The experience sparked an interest in Africa, international development, and solving big problems through business-like approaches. After getting business and public policy master degrees at the University of Texas, Kyle joined Population Services International (PSI), a non-governmental organization pushing the boundaries on social marketing, a new approach to social change at the time. Kyle went to Rwanda, six months after the end of the country’s genocide, as country director to restart PSI’s program shut-down during the war. He established a family planning and HIV/AIDS prevention program. Two years later, he started PSI’s social marketing program in Zimbabwe, the epicenter for HIV in Southern Africa in the mid-1990s. Kyle launched a number of novel health programs through the private sector — including a network of HIV counseling and testing sites and insecticide treated mosquito bed nets — that averted thousands of cases of HIV/AIDS and malaria.
Interested in private sector approaches, he signed on with Monitor Consulting to learn the strategy-making ropes, moving from Zimbabwe to Boston. He was soon in Wichita managing a competitiveness study for the firm’s founder, Harvard Business Professor, Michael Porter. He went back to Rwanda and started a multi-year project advising President Kagame and the Cabinet on the country’s economic strategy.
In 2001, Michael Porter and Mark Kramer had just started a new type of consulting organization — Foundation Strategy Group (FSG) — to help philanthropists be more effective. Kyle helped to launch and lead FSG over the next 14 years. While at FSG, Kyle built the global development and health practice areas and led over 150 consulting engagements for foundations, companies, and nonprofits. He also served on FSG’s board of directors and helped with big idea pieces, such as “Catalytic Philanthropy,” “Collective Impact,” and “Shared Value.”
The Walton family was searching for a new leader of their family philanthropy and Kyle signed on as the head of the 30 year-old Walton Family Foundation, based in Bentonville, Arkansas, in 2016. In the role, he oversaw the transformation of one of the nation’s largest family foundations to support $600 million in annual grant making, across education, environment, and economic development program areas. He also supported the philanthropic projects of all Walton family members, which included establishing new charitable vehicles. He helped to create a think tank serving the Heartland and was the founding board chair for two groundbreaking charter school facility revolving loan funds. He strengthened the profile of the organization with a new mission and vision and values; led a diversity, equity, and inclusion assessment and organizational change effort; and built new collaborative relationships with other funders.
Kyle has a BA in international studies from the American University, an MBA from the McCombs School of Business (University of Texas), and an MPA from the LBJ School of Public Affairs (University of Texas). He has served on several boards during the last decade, including Foundation Strategy Group, Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, and the Global Health Council. He is a lifetime member of the Council on Foreign Relations.
Kyle is a frequent speaker on family and institutional philanthropy, corporate social engagement, and international development. He is author of several field reports including “Ahead of the Curve: Insights for the International NGO of the Future” and “Competing by Saving Lives: How Pharmaceutical and Medical Device Companies Create Shared Value in Global Health” and articles such as “Lobbying for Good” featured in the Stanford Social Innovation Review. He contributed the chapter “Social Enterprise and Innovation in Emerging Markets” with Leslie Crutchfield in the 2016 book, Innovation in Emerging Markets.
When not working, Kyle loves to travel, hike, and mountain bike with his wife, Maury, and teenage son, Finn.
CONNECT Program Fellow
Miti Shah is a CONNECT Program Fellow through the University of Texas at Austin. She is a fifth year PhD student at the University of Texas at Austin. She is an international student from India, where she completed her Bachelors and Masters in Psychology before moving to the US to pursue a career in Social Psychology. Her research interests broadly include prosocial behavior, collective action, and language. She also consults part-time at the LBJ School of Public Affairs, working with nonprofits and philanthropic organizations to provide strategy, evaluation and insights.
The CONNECT program seeks to activate learning from data and build both capacity and interest in greater data, measurement and evaluation capacity within community organizations. The program achieves this through personalized, high-touch intake with nonprofit organizations who have data and evaluation projects, recruitment of skilled graduate students (masters and doctoral) at the University of Texas, student fellowships to recognize program participation, an online platform and matching to ensure a good fit between organization and student, and customized project support leading to high-quality, actionable deliverables.
Sara Surani has cross-sector experience working at the intersections of gender equity, health, education, environment, and poverty alleviation. Sara graduated from Harvard University with a degree in Social Studies and Global Health and recently completed her Masters in Global Affairs at Tsinghua University in China as a Schwarzman Scholar.
She is Co-founder of a health education program in South Texas called iConquer focused on educating over 20,000 young children about healthy living as well as Co-founder of a start-up called Nayaraq focused on dismantling gender equity through storytelling workshops. She has previously spearheaded mental health initiatives in Boston, designed public health programming for the Zika virus outbreak in Nicaragua, implemented programming for a tuberculosis intervention in Peru, and researched maternal and child mortality in Tanzania. She has worked with community empowerment and entrepreneurship globally, collaborating with organizations including the government of Oaxaca, Mexico. In 2018, through a Fulbright Fellowship, Sara worked with remote communities in the Amazon jungle on youth empowerment, education, and public health, and helped start the first public holistic education school in Peru.
She is currently working with the New Mexico Department of Health, leading educational training for community health workers across the state and designing strategies to make health care resources more accessible for communities most impacted by systemic racism.
Jana has grown up across a diverse set of cultures. She is a Slovenian-British-Chinese citizen and speaks three languages. She is passionate in “making a sustainable living commonplace.” She has 5+ years of experience in project management across sustainability driven initiatives. Previously, she has worked as a Partnership Manager in Unilever (industry leader in S&P DoW Jones Sustainability Index). In parallel, she has dedicated herself in not only preserving the planet for future generations but building communities where everyone belongs, feels safe, and their individual voices heard, valued, and respected.
Jana has worked with numerous NGOs including Caritas to provide access to clean water in rural areas of Tanzania, Steppingstones in Shanghai to provide access to equal education for migrant children, World Economic Forum (WEF) to promote a more circular economy in China, and Borneo government to build rural schools in remote villages. Her higher education includes a bachelor and a master’s degree in chemical engineering from Imperial College London. In summer 2021, she graduated with her second master’s MMSc in Management of Science in Global Affairs at Tsinghua University, as the fifth cohort of Schwarzman Scholars. People would say Jana is a warm, bubbly individual who loves sharing anything from a hot chocolate to a cake.
Rachel Gordon Vivas
Rachel Gordon Vivas
Rachel has over 10 years of experience providing both strategy and management consulting services to non-profits, foundations and public sector entities. In a variety of cross-sector roles, she has developed a toolkit of best practices and data-driven techniques to closely collaborate with partner organizations and drive social impact.
Rachel began her career advising academic institutions on how to increase operational efficiencies, reduce costs and mitigate risk through data analysis, business process redesign and stakeholder interviews. She then transitioned to providing project management support to local governments, including planning, executing and implementing long-term initiatives, as well as advising on performance improvement strategies to enhance their daily operations. More recently, Rachel works with social change organizations to develop high-impact strategies and operational approaches centered on racial equity.
Outside of consulting, Rachel has managed research and evaluation projects to support data-driven decision-making regarding resource allocation and real estate investment in support of community development activities. She has led focus groups with community members and conducted demographic analyses to assess education, health and housing needs and develop models to measure long-term outcomes in their areas. She also served as a Mayoral Fellow focusing on government efficiency, policy analysis and enhancements to city-wide initiatives related to economic development, education, public safety and sustainability for the City of Chicago.
Rachel earned her BA from the University of Michigan in Organizational Studies and Political Science as well as her MPP from the Harris School of Public Policy at the University of Chicago. She also currently serves as an Associate Board Member for City Year Detroit and a mentor to its corps members.
Meet our advisors whose networks, knowledge, and expertise help us raise our game.
Julie Fisher Cummings
Trustee, Max M. & Marjorie S. Fisher Foundation
Julie is a philanthropic leader who was born in Detroit and is dedicated to giving back to the communities where she has lived. She recently returned to school and received a graduate degree in Social Policy from Columbia University in New York. Currently, she is teaching a graduate course on Child Policy at the University of Miami in Florida. Julie is dedicated to serving her local and national community. Nationally, she is a Presidential appointee and board member of the Corporation for National and Community Service. She has served on numerous boards, including Children’s Hospital of Michigan, Community Foundation for Southeastern Michigan, the United Way of Southeastern Michigan and the Mailman School of Public Health at Columbia University.
As a native of Michigan, she assumed the mantle of leadership for a number of key organizations, including the Detroit Arts Commission, and the Michigan Community Service Commission. Passionate about advancing the field of philanthropy, she helped create programming and retreats for family philanthropy in her tenure on the board of the Council of Michigan Foundations. Most recently, she joined the board of the National Center for Family Philanthropy.
For the last five years, Julie has served as the managing trustee of her family’s foundation, whose other members include her mother and four siblings. The Max M. & Marjorie S. Fisher Foundation supports work that strengthens families and communities in need. In Detroit, the Foundation concentrates its efforts in the Jewish community and on early childhood development in the Brightmoor neighborhood. The Foundation is also committed to fostering AIDS awareness and to supporting the major cultural institutions on which the rebirth of this city depends.
Executive Director, Georgetown University’s Business for Impact Initiative
Leslie is an author, educator, social change expert and Executive Director of Business for Impact at Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business. Business for Impact’s core value is that companies can be a powerful force for good in the world, and the center delivers world-class education, student experience, and cross-sector collaborations for people, planet and profit.
Leslie’s latest book is How Change Happens: Why Some Movements Succeed While Others Don’t, noted in The New York Review of Books as a blueprint for groups inspired to take action on today’s major causes. Leslie also co-authored the bestselling Forces for Good: The Six Practices of High-Impact Nonprofits – recognized by The Economist on its Best Books of the Year list – and Do More than Give. She teaches corporate social responsibility in Georgetown’s MBA program and nonprofit leadership on LinkedIn Learning.
Leslie previously was managing director at Ashoka, the global venture fund for social entrepreneurs, and co-founded a national nonprofit social enterprise in her 20s. Leslie has contributed to Fortune, Forbes, The Chronicle of Philanthropy, and Stanford Social Innovation Review, and has appeared on programs such as ABC, FOX, NPR and PBS. She has volunteered on SEED Foundation and Kiva’s boards and with Crossroads Africa. She holds an MBA and BA from Harvard, and resides in the Washington, D.C. region.
President, Quantum Foundation
Eric Kelly has a Bachelor of Science degree in Communications from Florida State University and a Masters of Nonprofit Management from Florida Atlantic University. He has completed a combined 36-hours of Masters Coursework in Biblical Studies at Moody Bible Institute and Southeastern Theological Seminary.
He is the President of Quantum Foundation—a West Palm Beach-based health corporation that manages a $150 million investment fund. As President, Eric is responsible for formulating the strategy to deploy a multi-million dollar grant portfolio of funding to qualified organizations in Palm Beach County to improve health outcomes. Eric is a community leader who works across the business, not-for-profit, and public sectors to ensure community improvement initiatives are sustainable and offer systemic solutions. Eric often challenges the historical philanthropic assumption of “doing charity” in an effort to create effective drivers for equitable change.
Eric is a member of the Board of Directors of Florida Philanthropic Network, Southeastern Council of Foundations, Economic Council of Palm Beach County, and the Business Development Board of Palm Beach County. Eric Kelly lives in West Palm Beach with his wife, Kirra and four children: Madison, Mason, Miles, Malachi and family dog, Meadow.
Senior Advisor, Warburg Pincus
David B. Krieger is based in Houston, joined Warburg Pincus in 2000 and, as a senior partner of the firm, primarily focused on energy investments. In 2020, Mr. Krieger transitioned into a Senior Advisor role with Warburg Pincus. Previously, he worked at McKinsey & Company in Atlanta and throughout Europe. Mr. Krieger is a director of several energy and energy technology companies.
He also serves as a Trustee of the Kaufman Center for the Performing Arts, the Houston Symphony, and the University Of Texas Health System. Mr. Krieger received a B.S. in economics summa cum laude from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, an M.S. with high honors from the Georgia Institute of Technology and an M.B.A. with distinction from Harvard Business School.
Chair, Cynthia and George MItchell Foundation
Katherine Lorenz is Chair of the Board of the Cynthia and George Mitchell Foundation (www.cgmf.org), a grantmaking foundation focusing on environmental sustainability in Texas, and Senior Advisor at the National Center for Family Philanthropy (www.ncfp.org). She is the Leader of the Next Gen of the Giving Pledge, and Forbes named Ms. Lorenz “Ones to Watch,” an up-and-coming face in philanthropy in 2012. Previously, she served as Deputy Director for the Institute for Philanthropy (www.instituteforphilanthropy.org), whose mission is to increase effective philanthropy in the UK and internationally.
Prior to that, Ms. Lorenz lived in Oaxaca, Mexico for nearly six years where she co-founded Puente a la Salud Comunitaria (www.puentemexico.org), a non-profit organization working to advance food sovereignty in rural Oaxaca through the integration of amaranth into the diet. She continues to be involved with Puente’s work as an active board member. Before founding Puente, she spent two summers living in rural villages in Latin America with the volunteer program Amigos de las Américas and later served on their Program Committee and as a trustee of the Foundation for Amigos de las Americas.
Additionally, she currently serves on the Boards of Directors of the Environmental Defense Fund, The Philanthropy Workshop (Vice-Chair), and the Endowment for Regional Sustainability Science, and formerly was a Fellow and later Board Chair at the National Center for Family Philanthropy, a Board Member of Exponent Philanthropy, Resource Generation, the Amaranth Institute, and a member of the National Academies’ Roundtable of Science and Technology for Sustainability. Ms. Lorenz is a member of the Global Philanthropists Circle of the Synergos Institute and serves on the Leadership Council of the Greater Houston Community Foundation and the national advisory committee of USC’s Irene Hirano Inouye Philanthropic Leadership Fund. Ms. Lorenz holds a B.A. in Economics and Spanish from Davidson College.
Senior Counsel, Philanthropy and Impact Investments at Builders Vision
Lisa Montez is the general counsel at the Walton Family Foundation. In this role, Lisa guides the foundation’s use of philanthropic tools to maximize social impact and provide advice on a wide range of legal matters, including compliance with the laws and regulations applicable to private foundations, formulation of governance and compliance policies, advising program staff with respect to grantmaking, and other general corporate and transactional matters.
Prior to joining the foundation, Lisa spent 10 years at the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, most recently serving as its deputy general counsel and assistant secretary. In that role, she assisted the general counsel and secretary in providing advice and counsel on compliance with nonprofit tax laws and regulations, corporate and board governance matters, and grants and impact investments in nonprofit and for-profit U.S. and non-U.S. organizations. Lisa also coordinated the foundation’s pro bono counsel network.
In addition to her experience at MacArthur, Lisa has spent time at the McCormick Foundation and the Chicago office of Chapman and Cutler, where she practiced public finance law focused on bond financing and securitization of tax-exempt status.
Lisa is a graduate of Rice University and the University of Texas School of Law.
Former Executive Director, Hyams Foundation
Jocelyn Sargent is a political scientist and institutional change agent with over two decades of experience advancing democracy and social justice agendas.
A co-founder of the Center for Social Inclusion, now a component of Race Forward, she has spent the bulk of her career devoted to social equity, civil society, leadership development, and promoting social justice through the empowerment of marginalized communities. While at the Open Society Foundation and then later at the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, she designed philanthropic and government programs to advance economic and social equity. Most recently, Ms. Sargent, the former Executive Director of the Hyams Foundation, was recognized for her outstanding sectoral leadership on issues of racial equity and social justice in 2017 by the Boston Business Journal and in 2018 by the Boston Magazine.
As a researcher, Ms. Sargent has developed and directed large-scale impact evaluations of major philanthropic programs of the Ford Foundation, Charles Stewart Mott Foundation, and Rockefeller Foundation, as well as various local community foundations. She has designed research strategies that informed the philanthropic sector’s support for strengthening community organizing and grassroots advocacy for social justice. By virtue of her humble extended family roots in the US South, Ms. Sargent possesses a deep personal passion for a fair and just society. She has taught university courses, written reports, and presented conference papers pertaining to racial and economic justice; health inequities; social networks; and public policy targeting low-income populations and communities of color.
President, The Institute for Citizens & Scholars
Raj Vinnakota is president of The Institute for Citizens & Scholars. The Institute prepares leaders and engages networks of people and organizations to meet urgent education challenges. The overarching goal is to shape an informed, productively engaged, and hopeful citizenry.
Raj is former executive vice president at the Aspen Institute where he launched the Youth & Engagement Programs division to work directly with young people ages 14 to 24 in urban and rural communities nationwide. Prior to joining the Aspen Institute, Raj was the co-founder and CEO of The SEED Foundation, a non-profit managing the nation’s first network of public, college-preparatory boarding schools for underserved children. For his work at The SEED Foundation, Raj and his business partner Eric Adler have been named Washingtonian of the Year by Washingtonian magazine, are recipients of the Manhattan Institute’s Social Entrepreneurship Award, and are recipients of Oprah Winfrey’s “Use Your Life” Award.
Raj attended Princeton University, from which he received a degree in Molecular Biology, as well as certificate of studies from the Woodrow Wilson School of Public Policy. Raj’s first job after college was as a management consultant with Mercer Management Consulting. Raj is a board director for a public company, Colfax Corporation (NYSE: CFX). He is a former trustee and executive committee member for Princeton University. In 2009, he received the Woodrow Wilson Award, the highest honor that Princeton bestows on an undergraduate alumnus.
Raj is an Echoing Green fellow and an Ashoka fellow. He is married and has one daughter and one cat. He loves basketball, working out and learning from his daughter.
Trustee, Philanthropic Leader, Author
Jeff Walker is Chairman of New Profit, a social change investment fund and is Vice Chair in the WHO/CHAP Venture focused on front line health. He also currently serves on the boards of the African Philanthropy Forum, Just Capital, UVA Center for Contemplative Sciences (where he is chair), Giving Tuesday, the Aspen Management Partnership for Health and the University of Virginia’s Undergraduate Business School, where he was President for ten years. He is a partner in Bridge Builders investment fund for Mindful Wellness. Jeff was on the board of the University of Virginia, Chairman of The Council of Foundations at University of Virginia (UVA), served on the Berklee College of Music Board, the Harvard Business School Dean’s Board of Advisors and was on the Visiting Committee and is on the Advisory Boards of MIT Media Lab and the Harvard School of Public Health. He has been on numerous other for-profit and non-profit boards.
Previously, Jeff was Executive-in-Residence at Harvard Business School, focusing on social enterprises and collaboration, and a Lecturer at the Kennedy School. At Harvard, he helped to develop a course in exponential fundraising for nonprofits. He served as the Chairman of Millennium Promise, partnering with the United Nations and Columbia University, an incubator to eliminate extreme poverty, and was the Chairman of the Thomas Jefferson Foundation (Monticello), where he is as an Emeritus Trustee. Jeff Co-Founded and was Chairman of Npower, an organization that provides shared technology services to nonprofits.
Jeff co-authored the book, “The Generosity Network”, about new approaches to gather resources to address causes each of us are passionate about. He also received the John C. Whitehead Award for Social Enterprise from the Harvard Business School Club of New York City. He is currently teaching, researching and writing on the issue of systems entrepreneurship and systems change.
For twenty five years Jeff was CEO and Co-Founder of CCMP Capital, the $12 billion successor to JPMorgan Partners, JPMorgan Chase & Co’s global private equity, Vice Chairman of JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Chairman of the JPMorgan Chase Foundation. He has an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School and a B.S. from the University of Virginia, is a Certified Management Accountant and a Certified Public Accountant. He received the John Whitehead award for philanthropy from the NYC HBS Club.
Executive Director, The Burke Foundation
As Executive Director, Atiya leads the Burke Foundation’s efforts to invest in the most promising and transformative programs and policies that foster the health, well-being, and resilience of children and families in New Jersey. She oversees the development and execution of its strategies to pursue targeted initiatives and partnerships focused on healthy pregnancies and births, healthy parent-child relationships, and high-quality early learning and care.
Before joining the Burke Foundation, Atiya was Executive Director at JP Morgan’s Philanthropy Center advising charitable trusts and family foundations on strategy, impact, and legacy for five years. At JP Morgan, she supported the development and launch of the Global Health Investment Fund, a $100 million social impact fund to advance the development of new drugs, vaccines and diagnostics, in partnership with the Gates Foundation. From 2001-2011, she led the Pfizer Foundation’s global health portfolio and spearheaded flagship programs, including Pfizer Global Health Fellows and Mobilize Against Malaria.
Atiya is interested in breaking silos and building coalitions, centered around community voices, to make systems change and build a cycle of opportunity across generations. She is passionate about collaborating with leaders across sectors to tackle the social problems facing underserved children and their families, and firmly believes that effective partnerships can unlock the potential of communities and create meaningful, lasting change.
Atiya graduated with degrees in biology and public policy from Brown University and has a Masters in Public Health in epidemiology from Columbia University. She serves as trustee with the Council of New Jersey Grantmakers. She lives in Princeton with her husband and two sons.
Executive Director, Cambridge Judge Business School Centre for Strategic Philanthropy
Clare Woodcraft has over 25 years of experience working in the field of socio-economic development and philanthropy in emerging markets.
She is the former CEO of Emirates Foundation, the national foundation of the UAE, where she led the organization’s transition from traditional grant-making to the model of Venture Philanthropy. During her time as CEO, she was elected as the Chair of the Arab Foundations Forum, a regional network of foundations where she helped to promote the model of strategic philanthropy.
Earlier she served as the Deputy Director of Shell Foundation, a leader in the philanthropic sector whose business model entails building scalable social enterprises to address global development challenges, otherwise known as enterprise-based philanthropy. Prior to this she was the Regional Director of Communications for Royal Dutch Shell in the Middle East and North Africa overseeing the company’s social investment and its transition into a more strategic focused portfolio in 14 countries. Earlier, Woodcraft headed Visa International’s public affairs arm in emerging markets working closely with governments in over 90 markets, to deploy social investment for public good with a focus on financial systems and electronic payments. Previously she worked as the Finance Editor of Middle East Economic Survey, a specialized energy journal reporting on socio-economic development related to oil economies.
She writes and speaks extensively on the paradigm shift in the philanthropic sector and is a vocal champion of Venture Philanthropy. Woodcraft is a fluent Arabic and French speaker with a BA in Modern Languages and a MSc in Development from LSE.
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