Board of Trustees
Yvette is the Executive Director of WITNESS - an international human rights organization that trains and supports people using video for human rights worldwide. Yvette envisions a citizen-driven human rights movement that effectively utilizes media and technology, and WITNESS as a human rights organization that bridges the worlds of human rights, media and technology by incorporating cutting edge innovations into traditional approaches to advocacy. Before becoming the Executive Director, Yvette served on the WITNESS Board, worked globally in start-ups (incl. the technology start-up JOOST by the founders of Skype) and established companies in media, content and new technologies (incl. MTV Networks).
She is a member of the Board of Trustees of Foundation Center, a leading authority on organized philanthropy. Yvette is a Board Member of Access, a global movement for digital freedom; Mideast Youth, a creator of powerful platforms to amplify voices of dissent; and the Public Good Projects. She is also an Advisory Board Member of Uncensored Interview, a digital platform for independent musicians.
Ana Marie Argilagos is currently a senior advisor to the Ford Foundation's Equitable Development team. Previously she created the Office for International and Philanthropic Innovation at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) where she served as its first deputy assistant secretary and also served as deputy chief of staff overseeing agency operations. Before re-joining HUD, she spent eight years as a senior program officer at the Annie E. Casey Foundation in Baltimore where she spearheaded the foundation's work in Indian Country and along the U.S.-Mexico border.
Ms. Argilagos has a great track record within both the public and nonprofit sectors — from educational programs manager at the National Association of Hispanic Journalists, to the director of the New Workplace for Women Project at the National Council of La Raza, and deputy director of AYUDA, a community-based legal clinic serving immigrants in Washington, DC. She has proven herself to be an entrepreneurial thinker with success in leading interdisciplinary teams and bridging diverse agendas for the betterment of the public. Ms. Argilagos received her B.A. in international relations from the American University and her master's degree in public administration from Harvard University.
Melissa Berman is the founding president and CEO of Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors, Inc., an innovative nonprofit philanthropy service launched by the Rockefeller family in 2002. Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors’ mission is to help donors create thoughtful, effective philanthropy throughout the world. RPA develops strategic plans, conducts research, manages foundations and trusts, structures major gifts, coordinates donor collaboratives, and provides re-granting and fiscal sponsorship services. Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors annually manages or facilitates about $200 million in giving to more than 25 countries. It has offices in New York, San Francisco, Los Angeles, and Chicago and will be opening in London by 2016.
Ms. Berman has led Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors since its inception, building it into one of the world’s leading philanthropic advisory, grantmaking, research, and project management services. Under her leadership, RPA developed and published the “Philanthropy Roadmap” series of donor guides with support from the Gates Foundation. She developed and leads RPA’s research initiative, “The Theory of the Foundation,” and is the author of three reports in that initiative.
A frequent speaker, Ms. Berman has been a guest lecturer at universities across the U.S., Europe, and Asia including Harvard, Yale, Stanford, Duke, IMD, Oxford, Sun-Yat Sen, and Beijing Normal universities. As a widely-recognized expert in philanthropy, Ms. Berman has been profiled in the New York Times and the Stanford Social Innovation Review. Her ideas and views are featured in the Economist, Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Financial Times, and the Chronicle of Philanthropy. She has been interviewed on the Today Show, NBC Nightly News, NPR, BBC Radio, CNBC-TV, and Bloomberg TV.
Previously, she served as senior vice president, research and program development at The Conference Board, a global nonprofit, independent business research organization. She oversaw all research and publications on management practices, including global corporate citizenship, governance, human resources, finance, and performance management.
Ms. Berman is a director of Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors and Foundation Center. She is an adjunct Professor at Columbia University’s Business School, where she also serves on the Advisory Board for the Tamer Center for Social Enterprise.
Ms. Berman holds a B.A. from Harvard University and a Ph.D. from Stanford University.
Dr. Gail Christopher is vice president for policy and senior advisor for the W.K. Kellogg Foundation in Battle Creek, Michigan. In this role, she serves on the president's cabinet that provides overall direction and leadership for the foundation. Since joining the foundation in 2007, Gail has served as vice president for program strategy with responsibility for multiple areas of programming, including Racial Equity; Food, Health & Well-Being; Community Engagement and Leadership; as well as place-based programming in New Orleans and New Mexico.
Prior to joining the foundation, Dr. Christopher was vice president of the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies' Office of Health, Women and Families in Washington, DC. There, she led the Joint Center Health Policy Institute, a multi-year initiative created to engage underserved, racial, and ethnic minorities in health policy discussions. Previously, she was guest scholar in the governance studies department at the Brookings Institution in Washington, DC, and executive director of the Institute for Government Innovation at Harvard's John F. Kennedy School of Government in Cambridge, Massachusetts. She has also launched, led, and managed three public commissions. Under her sponsorship, the landmark Dellums Commission research into conditions faced by young men of color produced policy recommendations to reduce racial and ethnic health disparities.
Dr. Christopher is a nationally recognized leader in health policy, with particular expertise and experience in the issues related to social determinants of health, health disparities, and public policy issues of concern to African Americans and other minority populations. She has more than 20 years of experience in designing and managing national initiatives and nonprofit organizations. She brings extensive knowledge and experience in creating a comprehensive approach to well-being and is nationally recognized for her pioneering work to infuse holistic health and diversity concepts into public sector programs and policy discourse. Her distinguished career and contributions to public service were honored in 1996 when she was elected as a fellow of the National Academy of Public Administration. In 2007 she received the Leadership Award from the Health Brain Trust of the Congressional Black Caucus for her work in reducing racial and ethnic health disparities. In 2015, Dr. Christopher received the esteemed Grantmakers in Health's Terrance Keenan Leadership Award in Health Philanthropy.
A prolific writer and presenter, Dr. Christopher is the author or co-author of three books, a monthly column in the Federal Times, and more than 250 articles, presentations, and publications. She holds a Doctor of Naprapathy degree from the Chicago National College of Naprapathy in Illinois and completed advanced study in the interdisciplinary Ph.D. program in holistic health and clinical nutrition at the Union for Experimenting Colleges and Universities at Union Graduate School of Cincinnati, Ohio.
Colborn oversees the service delivery functions of a multi-faceted social services nonprofit that serves 25,000 people each year in the greater Philadelphia region. Operating with an annual budget of $88.5 million, JEVS Human Services has over one thousand employees working in 20 successful programs providing skills development, job readiness and career services, vocational rehabilitation, recovery services, adult and residential day services, and in-home personal assistance.
Colborn has worked in the social sector for over 30 years, with backgrounds in philanthropy, community and economic development, and workforce development and employment policy and advocacy. He has played leadership roles in organizing philanthropic networks focused on workforce development, community colleges, and mission investing.
A graduate of Oberlin College, Colborn holds a master of business administration degree from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. He has served on a variety of boards and advisory panels and currently serves as a trustee of the Foundation Center and on the boards of the Council for Adult and Experiential Learning and the SkillsUSA Foundation.
Patrick Collins is the chief information officer at the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation. He is responsible for all aspects of the foundation's technology systems and also manages a small grants portfolio pertaining to information technology.
Before joining the foundation in 2005, Mr. Collins was director of information and communication services at the University of California Office of the President. There he directed the delivery of information technology services at UC headquarters and managed $200 million in annual information technology purchases for the UC system. Earlier in his career, Mr. Collins directed two academic data centers: the California Census Research Data Center at UCLA and UC Berkeley and the National Data Archive on Child Abuse and Neglect at Cornell University. He has contributed to more than 50 scholarly publications as a data analyst, statistician, and author.
Patrick serves on numerous advisory boards and formerly served on the board of directors of NTEN. He received a bachelor of science degree from Cornell University and an M.B.A. from the Haas School of Business at UC Berkeley.
Russ Hardin is president of the Robert W. Woodruff Foundation, Joseph B. Whitehead Foundation, Lettie Pate Evans Foundation, and Lettie Pate Whitehead Foundation.
The Woodruff Foundation is an independent private foundation established by Robert W. Woodruff, longtime leader of the Coca-Cola Company. The Whitehead and Evans foundations were established by members of the family of Joseph B. Whitehead, one of the original Coca-Cola bottlers. The foundations share an office and staff, though each is governed by its own charter and self-perpetuating board.
The Woodruff, Whitehead, and Evans foundations support a broad range of charitable activity, principally in Atlanta, Georgia. Program interests include health, education, environment, human services, arts and culture, and community development. In addition, the Lettie Pate Whitehead Foundation provides scholarships for women at more than 200 colleges, schools and universities in nine Southeastern states.
Mr. Hardin joined the foundations’ staff in 1988 and became president in 2006. Previously, Mr. Hardin practiced law with the Atlanta firm of King & Spalding and was associated with the Robinson-Humphrey Company. He also taught a course at the University of Georgia’s School of Law. Mr. Hardin received his B.A. degree with high distinction from the University of Virginia in 1979, and his J.D. degree with honors from Duke University School of Law in 1982.
Mr. Hardin serves as chairman of the board of Foundation Center, and trustee of Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Company. He also serves as a director of SunTrust Bank–Atlanta/Georgia Region, and the Commerce Club in Atlanta.
Mr. Hardin and his wife Melanie have two sons, Russell and Noel, and a daughter, Elizabeth.
Neal is the Vice President of Programs at the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation, in Flint, Michigan. He has held several positions within the Foundation, most recently as director of the Flint Area grantmaking program focusing on the redevelopment of downtown Flint and workforce and economic development initiatives in the Flint area. Neal also managed the Reducing Barriers to Employment portfolio on the Pathways Out of Poverty program (now titled Pathways to Opportunity program) and has worked on several of the Foundation's Special Initiatives projects for statewide and regional economic revitalization. Neal joined the Mott Foundation in January 2000. He holds a bachelor's degree from Texas Tech University and a master's degree from Michigan State University.
Neal, his wife Amanda, and two sons reside in Grand Blanc, Michigan.
The Charles Stewart Mott Foundation was founded in Flint, Michigan, in 1926, by a General Motors pioneer and is a private philanthropy committed to supporting projects that promote a just, equitable, and sustainable society. It supports nonprofit programs throughout the United States and, on a limited geographic basis, internationally.
Deborah Hoover has served since 2007 as president and CEO of Burton D. Morgan Foundation, a private foundation based in Hudson, Ohio, with a mission to champion the entrepreneurial spirit. Ms. Hoover was instrumental in establishing the foundation's Northeast Ohio Collegiate Entrepreneurship Program, a Kauffman Campuses℠ Initiative, to spread entrepreneurship across liberal arts campuses; and in establishing NEOLaunchNET, formerly the Blackstone LaunchPad Program. Ms. Hoover spearheaded Morgan Foundation's decision to establish the Entrepreneurship Education Experiment, a research institute that advances the field of entrepreneurship education through leading edge research projects and programs. Ms. Hoover received the Northeast Ohio EY Entrepreneur of the Year Award in 2014 in the Educational Services & Nonprofit category.
Ms. Hoover served from 2013-2015 as chair of the Fund for Our Economic Future, a philanthropic collaborative created in 2004 to advance the economic competitiveness of Northeast Ohio and she continues to represent the fund on the Team NEO Board of Directors. She is chair of the Advisory Council for Foundation Center – Midwest and in April, 2014 was elected to the national board of Foundation Center. Ms. Hoover serves on the board of trustees of Western Reserve Academy and is a board member of the National Council for the Norman Rockwell Museum in Stockbridge, Massachusetts.
Ms. Hoover earned her B. A. from Williams College and a master’s in the history of art from the University of Chicago. She continued graduate studies at George Washington University National Law Center where she earned a J.D. degree and was a member of the Law Review. She is a member of the bar in the District of Columbia, New Hampshire, and Ohio. In 2004, Ms. Hoover completed the "Governing for Non-Profit Excellence Executive Education Program," and in 2010 she completed the Performance Measurement for Effective Management of Nonprofit Organizations, both held at Harvard Business School. Ms. Hoover holds an honorary doctor of humane letters from Baldwin Wallace University.
Dominick Impemba is a Certified Public Accountant with nearly 20 years of experience working with nonprofit organizations. At The Rockefeller Foundation, Mr. Impemba oversees the day-to-day accounting for the foundation and its $4.1 billion endowment, monitors and evaluates internal controls, develops organization-wide policies and procedures, reviews the organization's tax filings, and is one of the individuals responsible for the annual budget process.
Prior to joining The Rockefeller Foundation, Mr. Impemba was an audit senior manager at KPMG LLP in its nonprofit practice. Before that he was the controller at the Institute of International Education and an audit manager at Condon O'Meara McGinty and Donnelly, LLP, a public accounting firm dedicated to serving nonprofit organizations.
Mr. Impemba is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and the New York State Society of Certified Public Accountants. He holds a Bachelor of Business Administration in Accounting from Iona College in New Rochelle, NY.
As a senior director in Walmart’s eCommerce Field Operations, Sylvester has responsibility for the store pickup and dispatch operations across select regions. He also leads business development of the online grocery operation for pickup, delivery, and other innovative access points.
Preceding his current assignment, Sylvester served as the Walmart W. Africa Executive for two years, based in Nigeria. Beyond operations, he was responsible for contributing to the strategic growth direction, and led the company’s business development efforts in W. Africa. Previously he had numerous experiences in various departments within the Fresh Grocery merchandising unit of Walmart U.S., including managing a $600 million portfolio within Dairy.
Prior to Walmart, Sylvester had a long career with the international development organization, Enactus, where he was international president and founding head of their Office for Strategic Initiatives. While serving a three-year term as president of Enactus’ 36-country International Affiliate Division, Sylvester led a network of over 40,000 individuals to increase the overall division revenue by 50 percent, institutional customers by 28 percent, consumers by 60 percent, and country performance index by 10 percent, all despite a 20 percent country reduction as a result of global network consolidation.
Prior to joining Enactus he held the position of marketing specialist with United Parcel Service’s (UPS) business development division in North Florida; before which he was their human resources recruiter, hiring employees for the company’s second largest hub. He’s been a partner and vice president of marketing for Pineapple Records and Café in Jacksonville, Florida, and has more than 20 years of sales and marketing experience with various Fortune 500 companies and his own entrepreneurial ventures.
Sylvester graduated from the University of North Florida with bachelors of business administration in both marketing and management and pursued an M.B.A. at Webster University. He has a command of four languages, including French — for which he holds an Advanced Level Certificate (GCE). A frequent participant, keynote speaker, and/or panelist at the Corporate Council on Africa’s US-Africa Business Summits, World Economic Forum’s Africa Economic Summits, UBS’ Philanthropy Forums, Russia’s Gaidar (Economic) Forums, among others, he remains well informed about key international issues.
Sylvester received the Constituency for Africa’s African Pioneer award in 2012 and his Alma Mata, UNF, honored him in 2007 and 2009 with the Outstanding Alumnus of the Year and Prime Osborne Distinguished Business Leader awards, respectively.
Susan Kish is a senior executive with extensive experience in building successful businesses, products, services and teams. She has worked across multiple global industries e.g., financial services, media, and clean energy and is a relentless advocate of digital and data literacy. A seasoned entrepreneur, Susan has been successful in bringing new ideas and businesses to life inside large corporations and banks as well as in start-up environments. Susan leverages a wealth of knowledge of strategy, marketing and digital media, as well as product and business development expertise.
Most recently at Bloomberg LP, Susan headed up a cross-platform team and set of initiatives to drive strategy, innovation, and integration across the media, data, and analytical platforms. Innovations to come out of this venture include the birth of “The Year Ahead,” a data-driven media franchise and the incubation of Bloomberg’s award winning data visualization team.
Susan previously led market development at New Energy Finance, which was acquired by Bloomberg. In this role, Susan initiated the Bloomberg Future of Energy Summit in 2008 — one of the world’s most successful energy conferences — which she continues to moderate for Bloomberg today.
Prior to Bloomberg, Susan was an entrepreneur, founding First Tuesday Zurich in 1999. The business think tank connected start-ups and investors, convened and supported thought leader networks in private banking, emerging technologies, and sustainable energy. After First Tuesday Zurich was acquired in 2006 by the professional online network XING, she established XING’s consulting and advisory business.
Susan started her career as a banker at UBS and Chase. At UBS she built credit businesses in the commodity, brokerage and municipal finance sectors before moving from New York to Zurich as Global Functional Head of Structured Finance, and member of the Global Credit Risk Committee.
Susan is a trustee and independent director on several boards including Foundation Center, InsideClimate News, and One Month, an online learning platform.
Susan is currently the senior advisor to the chief marketing officer, IWM at Credit Suisse, and the executive-in-residence at Excel Venture Management in Boston. Susan recently joined the faculty at the Pratt Institute’s Design Management Graduate Program as a professor of international business.
Susan graduated from Harvard-Radcliffe College in the history of science, Magna cum Laude, and lives outside of Boston with her family.
Earl Lewis became the sixth president of the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation in March 2013. Under his guidance, the foundation has reaffirmed its commitment to the humanities, the arts, and higher education by emphasizing the importance of continuity and change.
A noted social historian, Mr. Lewis has held faculty appointments at the University of California at Berkeley (1984–89), and the University of Michigan (1989–2004). He has championed the importance of diversifying the academy, enhancing graduate education, re-visioning the liberal arts, exploring the role of digital tools for learning, and connecting universities to their communities.
Prior to joining the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, Mr. Lewis served as provost and executive vice president for Academic Affairs and the Asa Griggs Candler Professor of History and African American Studies at Emory University. As provost, Lewis led academic affairs and academic priority setting for the university.
He is the author and co-editor of seven books, including The African American Urban Experience: Perspectives from the Colonial Period to the Present (with Joe William Trotter and Tera W. Hunter, Palgrave Macmillan, 2004); Defending Diversity: Affirmative Action at the University of Michigan (with Jeffrey S. Lehman and Patricia Gurin, University of Michigan Press, 2004); Love on Trial: An American Scandal in Black and White (with Heidi Ardizzone, WW Norton, 2001); the award-winning To Make Our World Anew: A History of African Americans (with Robin D.G. Kelley, Oxford University Press, 2000); In Their Own Interests: Race, Class and Power in 20th Century Norfolk (University of California Press, 1991); as well as the 11-volume The Young Oxford History of African Americans (with Robin D.G. Kelley, Oxford University Press, 1995–1997); and the award-winning book series American Crossroads (University of California Press).
A native of Tidewater, Virginia, Mr. Lewis earned an undergraduate degree in history and psychology from Concordia College in Moorhead, Minnesota, and a Ph.D. in history from the University of Minnesota. He has been a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences since 2008.
In 2015, Mr. Lewis was awarded an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters from Rutgers University-Newark and an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters from Dartmouth College; he also received an honorary Doctor of Humanities from Concordia College in 2002; Outstanding Achievement Award from the University of Minnesota in 2001; and the Harold R. Johnson Diversity Service Award from the University of Michigan in 1999.
Patrick McCarthy is the president and CEO of the Annie E. Casey Foundation, a private philanthropy dedicated to helping build better futures for disadvantaged children in the United States. He is a trustee of the Casey Foundation and the Baltimore Community Foundation, chairman of the board of the Jim Casey Youth Opportunities Initiative, an executive committee member for both Living Cities and the East Baltimore Development Initiative, and a trustee on the board of Bryn Mawr College.
Prior to his becoming president and CEO, McCarthy was the Casey Foundation's senior vice president. In that capacity, he oversaw the foundation's work in the areas of health, reproductive health, mental health, substance abuse, juvenile justice, education, early childhood, youth development, child welfare and income security, as well as the foundation's Strategic Consulting Group and the direct service agency, Casey Family Services.
He was the initiative manager for the foundation's Mental Health Initiative for Urban Children, promoting neighborhood-based strategies for improving the emotional well-being of kids and families.
Prior to joining the Casey Foundation, McCarthy was senior program officer at the Center for Assessment and Policy Development, where he worked with foundations, states, and cities on system reform and strategic planning. He served as the director of the Division of Youth Rehabilitative Services; director of the Division of Program Support; administrator of Case Management for the Delaware Department of Services for Children, Youth and Their Families; and director of the Delaware Family Preservation Project. He taught child and family practice, research methods, and statistics at the graduate schools of social work of Bryn Mawr College and the University of Southern California and has experience as a family therapist and administrator in programs for emotionally disturbed youth and drug addicted adults.
McCarthy has a Ph.D. in Social Policy from the Bryn Mawr College Graduate School of Social Work and Social Research and an honorary Doctor of Laws degree from Montclair State University.
Valdemar de Oliveira Neto ("Maneto") is impact business director of Fundación AVINA, a foundation created by Swiss entrepreneur Stephan Schmidheiny to contribute to sustainable development in Latin America. AVINA promotes sustainable development initiatives by encouraging productive alliances between civil society and business leaders and by fostering convergence around action agendas for social change. Maneto previously served as policy director of the organization. Maneto also serves as CEO of World Transforming Technologies.
Before joining AVINA in 2003, Maneto was founding executive director of Instituto Ethos, a pioneering business membership association which promotes corporate social responsibility in Brazil. Elected as an Ashoka Fellow in 1986, Maneto went on to serve as its vice-president from 1994 to 1998 and was responsible for launching Ashoka's Global Fellowship Program for social entrepreneurs. He began his career as a lawyer and was co-founder of the Centro de Cultura Luis Freire, a pioneering organization that defended human rights and provided legal assistance during Brazil's military dictatorship.
Maneto is presently a board member of GIFE, the leading association of Brazilian grantmakers, and serves as a member of the Stakeholder Advisory Panel on General Electric's Corporate Citizenship Report.
Maneto earned a law degree from Universidade Federal de Pernambuco, Brazil, in 1982.
Clotilde Perez-Bode Dedecker is president and CEO of the Community Foundation for Greater Buffalo, an organization dedicated to connecting people, ideas, and resources to improve lives in Western New York.
As the chief executive officer at the Community Foundation, Clotilde has led a focused growth and impact strategy. Under her leadership the Community Foundation has facilitated numerous public/private sector collaborations focused on systemics change. These efforts have addressed issues such as school readiness, post-secondary attainment, lead-poisoning prevention, organizational development for arts organizations, and environmental stewardship. Most recently, Clotilde oversaw the Community Foundation’s effort to launch the Say Yes to Buffalo education initiative and the Greater Buffalo Racial Equity Roundtable.
Other service highlights include a White House appointment to the President’s Council on Service and Civic Participation, U.S. Committee co-chair of the United Nations International Year of the Volunteer, and president of the Association of Junior Leagues International. Clotilde has served on numerous boards. Current service includes CFLeads, Foundation Center, FSG, and the Global Fund for Community Foundations.
Clotilde’s work has been recognized by many including the Points of Light Foundation, the Governor’s Award for Service, the President’s Award for Service, and Buffalo News Citizen of The Year. She holds a master’s degree in education from the State University of New York at Buffalo and is a naturalized U.S. citizen, native of Cuba.
She speaks frequently on philanthropy, community impact, and nonprofit governance.
Bradford K. Smith joined Foundation Center as its president on October 1, 2008. Previously, Mr. Smith was president of the Oak Foundation in Geneva, Switzerland, a major family foundation with programs and grant activities in 41 countries in North America, Europe, Africa, Latin America, and South Asia. Prior to joining the Oak Foundation he developed and led the Ford Foundation's Peace and Social Justice Program, the foundation's largest program area. During his 10-year tenure as vice president, he distributed hundreds of millions of dollars to organizations working on issues of human rights, international cooperation, governance, and civil society in the U.S. and around the world.
Mr. Smith has devoted his entire career to the philanthropic and nonprofit sectors. He first joined the Ford Foundation as a program officer in its Brazil office before being promoted to representative. Prior to that, he directed the Brazil program of the Inter-American Foundation. At the start of his career, he worked for the YMCA of the USA, both in Costa Rica and New York, where he became manager for world development at its Center for International Management Studies.
Mr. Smith serves on the board of directors of the Tinker Foundation and the advisory board of the United Nations Trust Fund for Human Security. He holds an M.A. in economics from the New School for Social Research in New York and a B.A. in anthropology and ethnomusicology from the University of Michigan.
For the majority of her career, Marieke van Schaik has been with social enterprises that combine passion and professionalism in working for a better world. Working for the Dutch Charity Lotteries since 2000, Marieke has been able to make a significant contribution to its growth — developing and implementing a strategic vision on how best to spend the charity funds as well as dealing with the demands of an ever-growing and increasingly influential company.
The Dutch Charity Lotteries (Dutch Postcode Lottery, BankGiro Lottery, and Friends Lottery) give 50 percent of every ticket sold to good causes in the fields of nature conservation, poverty eradication, human rights and social cohesion, cultural heritage in the Netherlands, and health and welfare in the Netherlands.
Since 2009, Marieke has served as one of the three managing directors of the Dutch Charity Lotteries, and since 2013, she has chaired the team. Marieke's direct portfolio includes public affairs, charities, media, customer service, and human resources. She obtained a degree in international relations from the University of Amsterdam and then worked as a project manager at the DOEN Foundation before joining the newly set up charity department of the Dutch Charity Lotteries in 2000. After holding various positions in the department, she became head of the team in 2006 managing relations with hundreds of organizations receiving or wishing to receive lottery funding; implementing the application, monitoring, and evaluation processes; and organizing communications and events on charity issues.
Marieke co-initiated, conceptualized, and organized the first Postcode Lottery Green Challenge competition in 2007 and is still a jury member. The Green Challenge is the largest annual worldwide competition for the best green business plan and awards €500,000. In 2009, Marieke was closely involved in introducing the Dream Fund, which challenges organizations that receive €1 million or more from the Dutch Postcode Lottery to apply for their dream project: high risk initiatives with a potentially high impact. Examples include "A Breakthrough in the Fight Against AIDS," the HIV/AIDS treatment as prevention project in Swaziland, and the "Rhino Protection Program" in South Africa.
Marieke lives in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, with her husband Matthew Whitehead and three sons.