January 06, 2017

Rockefeller Foundation Names Former USAID Chief as President

The Rockefeller Foundation

Dr. Rajiv J. Shah, president of The Rockefeller Foundation.

Rockefeller Foundation

Rajiv Shah, the former administrator of the U.S. Agency for International Development, will become president of the Rockefeller Foundation on March 1.

A current member of Rockefeller’s Board of Trustees, Mr. Shah will be the grant maker’s first Indian-American leader. He succeeds Judith Rodin, who stepped down last year after almost 12 years at the helm.

Mr. Shah previously served as undersecretary and chief scientist at the U.S. Department of Agriculture and helped to create the National Institute for Food and Agriculture. He also held several leadership roles at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, where he helped launch agricultural-development programs such as the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa, a joint venture by the Gates and Rockefeller foundations, and the International Financing Facility for Immunization, which raised more than $5 billion for childhood immunizations worldwide.

W.K. Kellogg Foundation

Tonya Williams was appointed vice president for policy, communications, and knowledge analytics.

She joined the Kellogg Foundation in December from the White House, where she was a special assistant to Vice President Joe Biden. She also served as his director of legislative affairs, acting as the primary liaison between the vice president’s office and Congress.

Previously, Ms. Williams was the chief of staff and floor assistant for Rep. G.K. Butterfield, a North Carolina Democrat, and director of intellectual-property policy for North and South America at GlaxoSmithKline.

Careers Through Culinary Arts Program

Karen Brosius was named president. She has served since 2004 as executive director of the Columbia Museum of Art in South Carolina.

Fuchsberg Jerusalem Center for Conservative Judaism

Stephen Hazan Arnoff was appointed executive director of the center, a part of United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism. He was previously chief executive of the JCC (Jewish Community Centers) Association of North America.

Holocaust Memorial Center Zekelman Family Campus

Rabbi Eli Mayerfeld will serve as CEO of the Farmington Hills, Mich., organization. Rabbi Mayerfeld founded and formerly led the Jewish Wisdom Foundation in Bloomfield Hills, Mich.

Initiative Foundation

Matt Varilek, chief operating officer for the U.S. Small Business Administration, was named chief executive of the Initiative Foundation. He will succeed Kathy Gaalswyk, who has led the organization for 30 years.

JCC Association of North America

Doron Krakow was appointed chief executive. He comes to the association from American Associates, Ben-Gurion University, where he was executive vice president.

Maryland Food Bank

Carmen Del Guercio joined the charity as CEO. He was director of private banking at M&T Bank’s Wilmington Trust.

Mental Health Association of New York City

Kimberly Williams, executive vice president for integrated policy and program services at the organization, was promoted to president. She succeeds Giselle Stolper, who has retired after almost 27 years at the helm.

Other notable appointments

Susan Fink, senior vice president and chief development officer at Philabundance, will be director of development at Soroptimist International of the Americas.

Laura Goodman, senior director of field training at Junior Achievement USA, will be the group’s vice president for volunteer engagement.

Katharine Krieger, managing director of investments at the Eli and Edythe Broad Foundation, was promoted to chief investment officer.

Meka Sales, health-care program officer at the Duke Endowment, was appointed its director of special initiatives.

Alex Shapiro, former director of institutional advancement at the Institute of American Indian Arts, was appointed director of development at the Kansas City Symphony.

Dion Santana Trahan, former director of health-care and benefits solutions at business-software company MicroPact, was appointed director of advance at the W.K. Kellogg Foundation.

Elizabeth Weatherly joined Northern Virginia Community College as its vice president for institutional advancement. She was previously vice president for advancement at the College of Coastal Georgia.

David Whalen, an adjunct professor of philanthropy and sustainable international development at Brandeis University, was named chief development officer at Perkins School for the Blind.


Christy MacLear, who has led the Robert Rauschenberg Foundation since 2010, is leaving to join auction house Sotheby’s. Sharon Ullman, the foundation’s chief operating officer, will serve as acting executive director.

Keith Todd, chief executive of the Oregon Health & Science University Foundation, has resigned for personal reasons. The foundation raised more than $1.4 billion in gifts for the university during his tenure.


Edward Able Jr., who led the American Association of Museums (now the American Alliance of Museums) for 20 years, died on December 23. He was 72.

Mandell "Bill" Berman, a Detroit real-estate developer and philanthropist, died on December 21. He was 99.

Julia Lacy, a philanthropist, died on December 31 in Culver, Ind. She was 77. Ms. Lacy was the wife of Andre Lacy, chairman of LDI, a holding company headquartered in Indianapolis. She has served on the boards of several nonprofits in the city and chaired the board of the Children’s Museum of Indianapolis, which she chaired. Last April, Ms. Lacy and her husband gave $25 million to Butler University, which renamed its School of Business for Mr. Lacy.

Send an email to

Send an email to Anais Strickland.