First Reflections

July 18, 2017

I'm humbled and honored to lead Philanthropy Northwest as its next CEO and look forward to meeting all of you in person in the coming months. I'm thankful for Audrey Haberman's leadership during this time of transition and her tireless work alongside the board to update our strategy and refine our programs to better serve our membership and the sector as a whole. 

I was drawn to Philanthropy Northwest because of its unique mission and commitment to equity. The mission and passion of our members, our staff's innovative work and the strong commitment to and feeling of community we are building geographically and as a field make this organization a standout nationally during a pivotal time for our sector. 

As we look to the future, I'm struck by Philanthropy Northwest's values of equity, engagement, integrity, accountability and learning—values that have been central in my career thus far. Most recently I served as chief of staff at the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, supporting thousands of federal employees committed to public service. Before that I served as executive director of the White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, working to increase access to federal programs and services for these underserved populations. Earlier in my career I litigated education-related civil rights cases for the U.S. Department of Justice's Civil Rights Division including desegregation cases. 

My experiences will help position us to lead in these historic times. Trust in government institutions is at an all-time low and philanthropy is increasingly called upon to play a leadership role in our communities. With your support, I'm eager to double down on that work, inviting inclusive, diverse perspectives to the table and to develop innovative collaborations to lead the difficult conversations that will ensure a brighter, more equitable tomorrow. 

Like you, I believe in the power of philanthropy to be a voice for those historically left out, to facilitate conversations that lead to action and to forge new partnerships to create lasting change in our Northwest communities that honors our past, people and cultures. I look forward to listening to your ideas and partnering with you. Email or call me anytime, and I hope to see many of you at the upcoming conference — now is the time to lead through change!