The Ford Foundation today announced the appointment of Helena Hofbauer Balmori as head of its Mexico and Central America office, which is based in Mexico City.

Ms. Hofbauer Balmori, a globally renowned social justice leader, will succeed Mario Bronfman in leading the field office. She is currently the director for partnership development and innovation at the International Budget Partnership, where she has overseen grantmaking, capacity development and technical assistance for over 60 organizations in 25 countries, over the past 8 years. Currently, Ms. Hofbauer Balmori oversees the partnership’s Catalyst program in China, Egypt, India, Kenya, South Africa and Tunisia.

Respected in the field for developing evidence-based advocacy, Ms. Hofbauer Balmori was the founding director of FUNDAR, the Center for Analysis and Investigation, in Mexico. The Ford Foundation supported the creation of FUNDAR and the use of research to tackle complex social challenges in the region, such as migration and reproductive justice.

The daughter of a Mexican and an Austrian, Ms. Hofbauer Balmori is an accomplished author and renowned academic within the human rights, governance, democracy and global society sectors. She will bring her expertise to the foundation to continue the office’s five-decades-long support for the pursuit of social justice in the region.

“Helena has been a leader and a builder of strong collaborations over more than two decades. Her insight and global perspective will be an incredible resource to grantmakers and grantees both,” said Darren Walker, president of the Ford Foundation. “Helena is a perfect individual to shape the next generation of Ford’s work to expand justice and promote opportunity for all.”

The foundation’s work in Mexico and Central America aims to increase social inclusion in the region and address the issue of migration and its many effects. Ford also supports efforts to strengthen transparency and accountability in governance by engaging civil society organizations to advocate on behalf of people who are marginalized and underrepresented.

“I look forward to advancing the case for justice and inclusion throughout the region driven by visionary leadership committed to social change,“ Ms. Hofbauer Balmori said. “I am deeply honored to lead the Ford Foundation’s work and to continue the strong legacy of promoting rights and equality.”

Ms. Hofbauer Balmori earned her bachelor’s degree in international relations at El Colegio de México and her master’s in international peace studies at the University of Notre Dame. She will begin her new position on February 2, 2015. She was selected after a broad international search.

The Ford Foundation

The Ford Foundation is an independent organization working to address inequality and build a future grounded in justice. For more than 85 years, it has supported visionaries on the frontlines of social change worldwide, guided by its mission to strengthen democratic values, reduce poverty and injustice, promote international cooperation, and advance human achievement. Today, with an endowment of $16 billion, the foundation has headquarters in New York and 10 regional offices across Africa, Asia, Latin America, and the Middle East.

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