People in the News (2/4/18): Appointments, Promotions, Obituaries

People in the News (2/4/18): Appointments, Promotions, Obituaries

The Nathan Cummings Foundation in New York City has announced that BOB BANCROFT is joining the foundation as vice president of finance. For the past decade, Bancroft has worked for the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation, most recently as director of finance and tax. Prior to his decade at JKCF, Bancroft, a certified public accountant, owned and operated a successful small business in Boston and also served as controller for a wholesale distributor.

The Philadelphia-based William Penn Foundation has announced the appointment of HILARY RHODES as its new director of evaluation and learning. Rhodes previously worked for the Wallace Foundation in New York City, where she served as a senior research and evaluation officer and led its efforts to fill key knowledge gaps and generate evidence of what was working with respect to learning and enrichment opportunities for disadvantaged children and youth. Prior to joining Wallace, Rhodes worked at Abt Associates, Inc., where she led a multidisciplinary team of eight researchers and directed the national evaluation of NASA's Summer of Innovation Project, a program targeting middle school students. 

The directors of the Iowa West Foundation in Council Bluffs have announced the reelection of three board members to new three-year terms on the board. They are RICK CROWL, KATE CUTLER, and TARA SLEVIN.

The Carnegie Endowment for International Peace have announced the addition of JONATHAN OPPENHEIMER, a South African businessman and philanthropist, to its board. Oppenheimer began his career at NM Rothschild & Sons before moving to Anglo American and subsequently De Beers, where he held a number of senior management roles in Southern Africa and London over two decades. He founded Oppenheimer Partners in 2016 and remains actively involved in the family's other commercial and not-for-profit activities, including the Brenthurst Foundation, a Johannesburg-based economic development think tank, and Tswalu Kalahari, South Africa's largest private game reserve.

Nonprofit philanthropic consulting services Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors has elected MICHAEL QUATTRONE, RYAN ROCKEFELLER, and ROBIN STRAWBRIDGE to its board of directors. RPA also named WENDY O'NEILL, chair of the Asian Cultural Council, as its new chair and PETER ROCKEFELLER, a managing director at Brock Capital, as vice chair. All five are members of the Rockefeller family.

Agustín Arteaga, the Eugene McDermott Director of the Dallas Museum of Art (DMA), has announced the promotion of TAMARA WOOTTON FORSYTH to the position of deputy director. In that role, Wootton Forsyth, a seventeen-year veteran of the museum, will oversee the departments that support the intellectual and creative content generated by DMA staff, as well as the facility and infrastructures that sustain it, and will work with Arteaga and senior staff to strengthen the museum's position both as an international leader in scholarly research, interpretation, and stewardship of its collection and as a pioneer in public engagement.

The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation in New York City has announced that ELLA BAFF will step down in March from her position as senior program officer for arts and cultural heritage to focus on new opportunities. Baff joined the foundation in 2015 to lead the newly formed Arts and Cultural Heritage program, which encompass art history, conservation, preservation, museums, the performing arts, and public media. She also initiated and expanded grantmaking across the arts and in support of innovative cross-sector collaboration, including a recent initiative aimed at elevating national recognition and support for jazz, with grants to National Public Radio, Jazz at Lincoln Center, and Earshot Jazz Seattle. Baff plans to continue her work in philanthropy and in program development for cultural and heritage organizations in the visual, performing arts, and public media, and will continue to advise the foundation on the development of the jazz initiative. 

The Jessie Ball duPont Fund in Jacksonville, Florida, has announced that SHERRY MAGILL, its president for the last twenty-five years, will retire at the end of June. Magill joined the fund in 1991, hired as a program officer responsible for managing the fund's grantmaking to educational institutions. In 1993, the trustees asked her to serve as executive director and, in 2000, named her president. Over the years, she helped shift the fund from organization-focused philanthropy to community-focused philanthropy in the five communities where duPont invested most heavily; emphasized the importance of grantees' organizational capacity; invested in the infrastructure of the independent sector, including the Florida Philanthropic Network, the Nonprofit Center of Northeast Florida, the Partnership for Nonprofit Excellence in Richmond, Virginia, and the Delaware Grantmakers Association (now Philanthropy Delaware). She also served on the board of the Council on Foundations for nine years, the last three as chair, and led the fund through a landmark court case in 2003 that allowed it to expand the number of its trustees from four to seven, enabling broader geographic representation, professional expertise, and diversity in its governance. "Hiring Sherry Magill was one of the most important decisions made by the second-generation of the Jessie Ball duPont trustees," said trustee emeritus Jean Ludlow, who was among those who hired Magill. "She brought to the Fund intellect, experience and a deep devotion to Mrs. duPont's desire to continue the work of the institutions she supported. Sherry's vision has stretched our capacity and impact by guiding our work in new and more creative directions." The trustees have engaged executive search consultant Sally Sterling to lead a national search for Magill's successor, with a goal of having a new president named by early 2019. MARY KRESS LITTLEPAGE, who has served as a consultant to the fund since 1999, will serve as interim president beginning July 1.

PND also notes the passing of JON HUNTSMAN, SR., a billionaire chemical industrialist and one of the world's most generous philanthropists, at the age 80. Born in Idaho in 1937, Huntsman grew up poor in a two-room house without plumbing. "Throughout my life," he wrote in his 2015 autobiography, Barefoot to Billionaire, "I have hustled to outrun the shadow of poverty." Huntsman attend the University of Pennsylvania Wharton School and then served as a gunnery officer aboard the USS Calvert. He married his high school sweetheart, Karen Haight, in 1959, and it was through her family, the Salt Lake City Tribune reports, that he got a job in a California plant where he tried to master a new product — polystyrene. In 1970, Huntsman and brother Blaine Jr. launched their own polystyrene company, Huntsman Container, which took off after it won a contract to create the clamshell for McDonald's Big Mac. Shortly thereafter, he joined the Nixon administration as the president's staff secretary but left before the Watergate scandal broke. In the 1980s, Huntsman started borrowing millions of dollars to buy polystyrene plants and by 1990 was worth $450 million; six years later, his net worth was $2.5 billion. Huntsman, a Mormon, always was charitable, but the first gift that drew major attention came in 1987, when he gave $5 million to the University of Utah. Diagnosed with prostate cancer (the disease that claimed his father's life), Huntsman, who signed the Giving Pledge in 2010, donated or committed $580 million to the Huntsman Cancer Institute on the University of Utah campus and more than $1.8 billion overall to charity (not counting his tithing to the Mormon Church), making him one of roughly two-dozen people on the planet to give away more than $1 billion during his lifetime. "The people I particularly dislike," he told the Salt Lake City Tribune some years ago, "are those who say, 'I'm going to leave it in my will'. What they're really saying is, 'If I could live forever, I wouldn't give any of it away'." Huntsman is survived by his wife and eight of his nine children — Jon Jr., Peter, Christena, David, Paul, James, Jennifer and Mark. (Daughter Kathleen Ann Huntsman suffered from drug addiction and eating disorders and died in 2010.)

"Bob Bancroft Joins the Nathan Cummings Foundation as Vice President, Finance." Nathan Cummings Foundation News Release 02/01/2018. "William Penn Foundation Announces Hilary Rhodes as New Director of Evaluation and Learning." William Penn Foundation News Release 01/29/2018. "Iowa West Re-Elects Board Members, Appoints Officers." Iowa West Foundation News Release 01/18/2018. "Jonathan Oppenheimer Joins the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace Board of Trustees." Carnegie Endowment for International Peace 02/01/2018. "Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors Elects New Board Chair, Vice Chair and Three Members to Its Board of Directors." Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors News Release 01/31/2018. "Dallas Museum of Art Promotes Tamara Wootton Forsyth to Deputy Director." Dallas Museum of Art Press Release 02/01/2018. "Ella Baff to Leave Foundation." Andrew W. Mellon News Release 01/24/2018. "Jessie Ball duPont Fund President Sherry Magill to Step Down." Jessie Ball duPont Fund 02/02/2018. Matt Canham. "Utah Billionaire Philanthropist Jon Huntsman Dies at 80." Salt Lake City Tribune 02/01/2018.