Newsmakers | May-June 2016

earl martin phalenEarl Martin Phalen has joined the Ewing Marion Kauffmann Foundation’s board of trustees. Phalen is a nationally recognized education leader known for founding Building Educated Leaders for Life (BELL), Summer Advantage USA and the Phalen Leadership Academies. After a childhood in the foster system, Phalen was exposed to the desperate need for better educational and social services for disadvantaged youth. As a young adult, he participated in the Lutheran Volunteer Corps as assistant coordinator of a homeless shelter and went on to intern for Ted Kennedy working on human rights issues. He first began his career in education while a student at Harvard Law School. Phalen rose quickly, founding BELL, a successful after-school and summer education program provider, before leaving Harvard. Having previously earned a bachelor’s degree in political science from Yale University, he went on to finish his law degree at Harvard. Truly a self-made man, Phalen has been recognized for his services for disadvantaged youth numerous times. He was awarded the President’s Service Award by Bill Clinton in 1997, the Black Entertainment Television National Hero Award as well as the Fast Company’s Social Capitalist Award on three different occasions. “Earl brings a lifelong commitment to education and a track record of successful leadership and innovation to guide our work in this field,” said Janice Kreamer, chairman of Kauffman’s Board of Trustees. “His experiences and insights align with Ewing Kauffman’s desire to help individuals attain economic independence by advancing education and entrepreneurship. We are fortunate to have him join our team.”


Dave_HilliardDave Hilliard, longtime president and CEO of Wyman, recently announced his retirement. Hilliard has headed the St. Louis-based nonprofit for over 50 years, shaping how the organization strived towards its mission of helping and empowering disadvantaged teens and enabling them to live successful lives. Under Hilliard, Wyman transitioned from being a direct program and services provider to a national youth development program developer and partnership builder. Mr. Hilliard first began his time with Wyman as a summer camp counselor in 1965. He went on to join the professional staff by 1972 and became president by 1975. During Hilliard’s long tenure, Wyman has been recognized as one of the “100 Top Non-Profits in America Creating Social Impact” by the Social Impact Exchange and has consistently earned the highest quality ratings from Charity Navigator, the United Way of Greater St. Louis and the Council on Accreditation. “During his time with the organization, Dave has never wavered in his belief that all young people, regardless of their circumstance, can succeed,” said Keat Wilkens, Chairman of the Board. “Dave has established Wyman as a learning organization that continuously measures and improves its work to most effectively serve youth from under-resourced environments.” A successor to such an established leader is always a difficult decision, so Wyman’s board has employed a national search firm to identify who will be the new president and CEO.


aaron seybertThe Kresge Foundation recently announced the appointment of Aaron Seybert as a social investment officer. Seybert joins Kresge from JPMorgan Chase’s Community Development Banking group, where he served as executive director. During his time with JPMorgan Chase, he was the lead banker on numerous social impact projects, including Detroit’s M-1 Rail, the Saenger Theatre in New Orleans and the Salvation Army Kroc Center in Chicago. Most recently, Seybert worked as part of the team to develop and execute JPMorgan Chase’s $100 million investment in Detroit, overseeing $50 million investments into two local community development financial institutions (CDFI). A Michigan native, Seybert obtained two bachelor’s degrees in accounting and corporate finance from Central Michigan University and a juris doctorate from the Michigan State University College of Law. After his extensive education, he went on to get a job as assistant vice president for community development at a low-income housing tax credit syndicator and CDFI in Michigan. He served in Michigan’s legislative sphere as well, co-authoring two bills that protected the tax status of affordable housing developments. In his new role at Kresge, Aaron Seybert will lead the foundation’s social investment work throughout Michigan in collaboration with its Detroit Program and its American Cities Practice program. “Aaron comes to Kresge with deep, highly varied expertise in transactions that support low-income housing and transit-focused investments,” said Kimberlee R. Cornett, managing director of Kresge’s Social Investment Practice. “Aaron’s mandate is to understand where the investments of capital and capacity need to be made to promote a more robust pipeline of these projects in urban areas including Detroit. It’s a challenging portfolio – and one for which he’s exceedingly well-equipped.”


Amy Margerum Berg is leaving her positions as executive vice president for development and operations and corporate secretary at the Aspen Institute to accept a position as president of the Better Angels Society, a nonprofit which supports educational program development in the legacy of documentarian Ken Burns. Ms. Berg spent 16 years at the Aspen Institute in which she acted as a vital leader during a period of intense growth for the organization as it quintupled its budget and more than doubled its number of employees. She was invaluable as the head of a growing and robust community outreach program and spearheaded the opening of the institute to local disadvantaged youth in Aspen, Colorado. She also oversaw renovations to the institute’s campus and helped plan new construction to allow the hosting of large scale public events for the community. Before her long stint at the Aspen Institute, Berg served as Aspen city manager and CEO as well as planning director for the city of Aspen and Pitkin County. She also briefly spent time in California where she worked as director of long range planning for the County of Santa Barbara. “Amy exemplifies the kind of smart leadership and commitment to service that the Aspen Institute is known for,” said president and CEO Walter Isaacson. “Her tremendous contributions as a key member of our senior management team, on so many fronts, are sure to leave a lasting imprint.” Amy Margerum Berg joined the Better Angels Society as its president effective April 2016.


The Forum of Regional Associations of Grantmakers has appointed Maggie Gunther Osborn as its chief strategy officer. The position is a newly created one in which Osborn will lead the Forum’s efforts to identify and implement collaborative projects between philanthropy-serving organizations on the regional and national levels. Ms. Osborn is currently the president of the Connecticut Council of Philanthropy where she has helped support the state’s philanthropic sector since early 2013. Her experience in philanthropy also includes time as vice president of the Florida Philanthropic Network and as director of the Conn Memorial Foundation. Having spent much of her life in Florida, Osborne was also vice president of the Community Foundation of Tampa Bay, chief development officer of the Florida Aquarium, director of development of Alpha House of Tampa and campaign division director for United Way of Hillsborough County. Osborne is a graduate of Notre Dame of Maryland University where she was a Morrissy Scholar. She also earned a masters degree in leadership and philanthropy from Antioch University. Osborne’s educational background and extensive experience in philanthropy make her a good fit for her role coordinating with the Forum of Regional Associations of Grantmakers’ 33 regional philanthropy associations and more than 5,500 participating organizations. Maggie Gunther Osborn’s appointment is effective Aug. 1, 2016.


Dr. Stacy Carlson is the next president and CEO of Florida Philanthropic Network (FPN). Carlson is the current vice president and program director of college and career readiness at Helios Education Foundation and has nearly ten years of experience in foundation development and capacity building. She has served in numerous leadership positions, including as chair of the Florida Education Foundation Board, chair of FPN’s Education Funders Affinity Group, co-chair of the National Collaborative for Student Success and co-chair of the Grantmakers for Education Annual National Conference. Carlson’s doctorate degree is in educational leadership which she obtained from the University of Florida. She also holds a master of education from Harvard University and a bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of South Florida. “FPN was founded on the belief that innovative leadership and a unified voice are essential to successful philanthropic endeavors,” said Florida Blue Foundation Vice President and FPN Board Chair Susan Towler. “Stacy’s proven leadership paired with her extensive policy background will help FPN build upon these beliefs as we move into our next phase.” Dr. Stacy Carlson assumed the responsibilities of her new position on Apr. 11, 2016.


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