Welcoming Our New Board Members and Officers

Welcoming Our New Board Members and Officers

Welcoming our new board members and officers graphic with headshots

Philanthropy Northwest has an engaged board of directors, all of whom represent the diverse field of philanthropy in our six-state region, plus Hawai'i. As we enter a new year, we are pleased to welcome a new board member to our governing body as well as a new slate of board officers who will lead our organization into the future. 

Find out more about our new board member and our board officers below. 

New Board Member 

Warren Brown, Executive Director, College Spark Washington (WA) 

As a child, Warren experienced first-hand how Seattle’s redlining impacted his family, like so many other Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC) families. Rooted in this experience, he dedicated his career to remedying unjust policies and addressing educational equity. For nearly a quarter of a century, Warren served as college faculty and administrator seeking to address racism and systemic inequalities, most recently as the president of North Seattle College. Currently, at College Spark Washington, Warren leads a private foundation engaged in grantmaking to eliminate racism that blocks students’ postsecondary dreams. 

Warren believes in collective impact as he has served on several college foundations and nonprofit boards seeking to improve opportunities for students and families. Within collective impact, Warren believes that boards must span across various sectors, be dynamic and evolve based on centering equity within the influences from the broader society. Warren holds a doctorate degree in education and a bachelor’s degree in political science from the University of Washington, a master’s degree in nonprofit administration from Louisiana State University-Shreveport, a master’s degree in communication from Portland State University and holds a Certified Nonprofit Professional credential. 

New Board Officers 

Please join us in welcoming our new board officers. We're proud that alongside our CEO Jill Nishi, our leadership team is comprised of all women of color. 


Board Chair
Nichole June  Maher,  
Inatai Foundation (WA) 

Vice Chair of Programs
Brenda Solorzano,
Headwaters Health
Foundation (MT)

Vice Chair of Board Operations 
Lilliane Ballesteros, 
Latino Community Fund (WA) 
Toya Randall, 
Casey Family Programs (WA) 
Alex McKay, 
Rasmuson Foundation (AK) 


We also would like to acknowledge and thank our outgoing board officers as well as our outgoing board members. We are truly grateful for their commitment and continued support of our network. ​​​​​​ 


Outgoing Board Officers 

  • Aleesha Towns-Bain, Bristol Bay Native Education Foundation (AK) 
  • CC Gardner Gleser, Charlotte Martin Foundation (WA) 

Outgoing Board Members 

  • Kelly Bruggeman, formerly First Interstate Bank (MT) and Montana Community Foundation  (MT) 
  • Mark Dederer, Hohimer Wealth Management (WA) 
  • CC Gardner Gleser, Charlotte Martin Foundation (WA) 
  • Michelle Kauhane, Hawai'i Community Foundation  (HI) 
  • Mary Rutherford, Montana Community Foundation  (MT) 

Philanthropy Northwest Board Members 

Chaired by Nichole June Maher of Inatai Foundation, Philanthropy Northwest’s board consists of 18 leaders and represents our network of philanthropies of all types working in Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Washington and Wyoming plus Hawai'i. You can find the full list of our board members below. 

Lilliane Ballesteros, Latino Community Fund 
Kaberi Banerjee Murthy,  Conrad Prebys Foundation 
Diana Birkett Rakow, Alaska Airlines 
Warren Brown, College Spark Washington 
Shona Carter,  Black Future Co-op Fund 
Michelle DeWitt,  Bethel Community Services Foundation 
Mike Halligan, Dennis & Phyllis Washington Foundation 
Kris Hermanns, Seattle Foundation 
Nichole June Maher, Group Health Foundation  
Cat Martin, Vulcan LLC  
Alex  McKay, Rasmuson Foundation 
Ayyu  Qassataq,First Alaskans Institute 
Toya Randall,  Casey Family Programs 
Ernie Rasmussen, Bigfoot TeleCommunications of the Colville Tribes 
Brenda Solorzano, Headwaters Health Foundation  
Brian Tanner,  Potlatch Fund 
Aleesha Towns-Bain, Bristol Bay Native Corporation Education Foundation 
Huong Vu, Bill & Melinda  Gates Foundation