People in the News (7/05/15): Appointments and Promotions

People in the News (7/05/15): Appointments and Promotions

The has announced the appointment of HENRY S. BIENEN as interim president. Bienen, president emeritus of Northwestern University, previously served as the James S. McDonnell Distinguished University Professor and dean of the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University, where he started as an assistant professor in 1966. In addition, Bienen serves on the board of the Chicago Council on Global Affairs and is a member of Mayor Rahm Emanuel's economic development and planning committee. "While our board conducts a national search for a new president, Henry Bienen's experience leading Northwestern University with its excellence in teaching and scholarly study of literature and poetry will provide a smooth transition for the Poetry Foundation," said Richard Kiphart, board chair. "Further, [his] strong connection to Chicago and its cultural institutions makes him uniquely suited to this important role."

The has announced the elections of JOHN A. GIBBONS III and LAURA EMERSON to its board. Both are grandchildren of Elmer Rasmuson, in whose memory the foundation was established in 1955. Gibbons is founder and managing partner of Swanson River Capital Management LLC. Prior to that, he worked for eleven years at Trust Company of the West and was an equity analyst at Odin Partners, Merrill Lynch, and Bear, Stearns. Gibbons began his career at BayBanks, Inc. Emerson, a native of Anchorage, has worked in a range of jobs, including janitorial, retail, banking, and currently serves on the board of the Anchorage Museum.

The Flint-based has announced the election of SHANNON EASTER WHITE to its board. White, founder of design solution firm FUNchitecture, launched her career at PDA Architecture (now inForm studio) and then worked for ten years with THA Architects Engineers. She serves on the boards of several nonprofit sector organizations, including the Food Bank of Eastern Michigan, the American Institute of Architects, and the Flint Institute of Arts, and will become board chair of the Community Foundation of Greater Flint in early 2016. 

has announced the appointment of PAUL DeBASIO as executive vice president, investor relations, in which role he will be responsible for global customer relationship management. Prior to his appointment, DeBasio served as vice president of network engagement performance, overseeing United Way Worldwide's relationships with local United Ways in the United States, and before that worked at local United Ways in New England and for the U.S. Fund for UNICEF of New England Chapter. "I have been connected to United Way since I was a teenager," DeBasio said. "My family has supported United Way both financially and as volunteers. I hope to create and amplify the same meaningful experience for donors and companies to help them give back to their communities."

The has announced the appointment of DONNA PALMER as chief development officer and KATIE MERRELL as vice president of people. Palmer has more than twenty-five years' experience in nonprofit management and development at several organizations, including the American Diabetes Association, Compassion International, and St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, and began her career as an attorney. Merrell, who will be in charge of human resources, the LIVESTRONG Leaders program, and volunteer and intern relations at the foundation, previously worked at Susan G. Komen, internet marketing business Peranet, and Micrografx, a leader in the process management field.

The has announced the promotion of COLLEEN McDONAGH to the role of executive director. McDonagh previously was associate producer of ASCAP's Centennial Awards program, where she implemented new initiatives such as Creativity in the Classroom, Children Will Listen, Songwriters: The Next Generation at the Kennedy Center, the Young Jazz Composers Awards, and the Fresh Air Fund Summer Guitar Camp. Prior to joining the foundation, McDonough was assistant executive director for special projects at the Women's Sports Foundation, director of educational affairs at the Public Relations Society of America, executive director of the Public Relations Student Society of America, and an assistant dean and adjunct instructor at Pace University. She will succeed KAREN SHERRY, who recently retired after seventeen years in the role.

has announced the appointment of DAVID J. SKORTON as secretary, its top executive position. Skorton, a cardiologist by training, is the first medical doctor to lead the Smithsonian. Most recently, he served as president of Cornell University and as president of the University of Iowa (2003-06), where he was a faculty member for twenty-six years. Skorton succeeds WAYNE CLOUGH, who retired in December 2014. ALBERT HORVATH, the Smithsonian's CFO and undersecretary for finance and administration, served as the organization's acting secretary for the first six months of this year.

In other news, the  has announced the appointment of NATALIE ELWELL as its first senior gender advisor, responsible for instituting a consistent gender perspective across WRI's programs and within the organization. Previously, Elwell worked at USAID to build capacity and advance women's empowerment and gender equality across that agency's environmental and climate change activities and served as a gender advisor for World Neighbors, where she worked with field teams in eighteen countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America.

"." Poetry Foundation Press Release 07/02/2015. "." Rasmuson Foundation Press Release 07/01/2015. "." Ruth Mott Foundation Press Release 07/02/2015. "." United Way Worldwide Press Release 07/01/2015. "." Smithsonian Institution Press Release 06/30/2015. "." ASCAP Foundation Press Release 06/30/2015. "." LIVESTRONG Foundation Press Release 06/29/2015. "." World Resources Institute Press Release 06/29/2015.