Ford announces Irene Hirano Inouye as next board chair

NEW YORK, 28 May 2010 — The Ford Foundation announced today the election of Irene Hirano Inouye as the next chair of its Board of Trustees.

Ms. Hirano Inouye, who has served as a trustee since 2006, was elected yesterday by the full board to become the 10th board chair in the foundation's 75-year history. She succeeds Kathryn S. Fuller, who retires both as chair and a trustee after the board's September meeting.

Ms. Hirano Inouye is a nationally recognized leader in the nonprofit sector, with more than 35 years experience in nonprofit administration, community education, and public affairs. She served as the president and founding CEO of the Japanese American National Museum from 1988 to 2008, bringing it to national prominence and affiliation with the Smithsonian Institution. Ms. Hirano Inouye is the immediate past chair of the American Association of Museums, a standards-setting and best practices organization working with more than 3,000 institutions nationwide. She is also a trustee and served as chair of the Kresge Foundation from 2006 to 2008.

"Irene will bring to this role invaluable experience as a social entrepreneur, having built a large, independent, and mission-driven organization," said Luis Ubiñas, president of the Ford Foundation. "Her national reputation has been built on a record of vision, collaboration, and accomplishment, as well as an unyielding commitment to the values of collective fairness and individual opportunity that lie at the heart of Ford's mission. She will play a critical role in guiding our work to improve lives and create opportunity for people throughout the world."

Under Ms. Hirano Inouye's leadership, the Japanese American National Museum in Los Angeles grew into a national institution, opening its restored historic building in 1992 and expanding into a state-of-the-art 85,000-square-foot facility with programs in arts, culture and history in 1999. In 2005, she opened the National Center for the Preservation of Democracy, the museum's third major expansion under her leadership.

Prior to her work in the museum field, for 13 years Ms. Hirano Inouye was the Executive Director of T.H.E. Clinic, a community clinic serving diverse women and families in southwest Los Angeles. She developed specialized health programs serving African American, Hispanic and Asian American women. Her work in serving women included serving as Chair of the California Commission on the Status of Women and founding the National Asian Pacific Women's Network.

Ubiñas also saluted Fuller. "Kathryn led the board with great skill during her seven years as chair," he said. "She has been an essential partner to me over the last two years. Beyond her service as board chair, Kathryn has helped shape the foundation during 16 remarkable years as a trustee. We'll miss her tremendously."

Ms. Hirano assumes leadership of a Ford Foundation board that has seen the arrival of four new trustees in the last 24 months, including one—Cecile Richards—who leads a global social justice organization, two—Robert Kaplan and Peter Nadosy—with deep expertise in the private sector and the management of major endowments, and, in N.R. Narayana Murthy, a globally renowned entrepreneur in the high-tech sector.

Ford Foundation trustees are elected by the full board and serve six-year terms. Trustees set broad policy relating to grant making, geographic focus, investments, governance and professional standards, and they oversee internal and independent audits. The foundation's trustees hail from four continents and have extensive experience in the worlds of higher education, business, law, government and the nonprofit sector.

The full Ford Foundation board of trustees includes:

Kofi Appenteng, a leading expert in investment and development in West Africa, serving as managing director of Constant Capital Ltd., and as a partner at the West Africa Fund. Mr. Appenteng also serves as chairman of the African-American Institute, and is a board member of the International Center for Transitional Justice, Wesleyan University, and the University of Cape Town Fund. He is also a former partner at Thatcher Proffitt & Wood LLP.

Afsaneh M. Beschloss, president and chief executive of The Rock Creek Group. An authority on international and corporate finance, she is former CEO and CIO of Carlyle Asset Management Group and former treasurer and CIO of the World Bank. She serves on the investment committees of Smithsonian Institution and the United Nations, and is on the board of the Urban Institute and the World Resources Institute, among others.

Anke A. Ehrhardt, vice chair for academic affairs and professor of medical psychology in the Department of Psychiatry at Columbia University's College of Physicians and Surgeons. She also serves as director of the HIV Center for Clinical and Behavioral Studies at the New York State Psychiatric Institute.

Kathryn Fuller, former president and chief executive of the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) between 1989 and 2005. Before joining WWF, she worked at the U.S. Department of Justice, first in the Office of Legal Counsel, then as a trial attorney in the Land and Natural Resources Division, where she helped create the Wildlife and Marine Resources Section. She has been a Ford Foundation trustee since 1994. (Ms. Fuller's term on the board concludes in September.)

Dr. Juliet V. García, president of the University of Texas at Brownsville and Texas Southmost College, a partnership that combines community college and university-level academic programs to provide affordable, accessible higher education in the border region. In 2009 she was named by Time Magazine as one of America's ten best college presidents. She serves on the board of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and is a past president of the American Council of Education.

J. Clifford Hudson, chairman and chief executive officer of Sonic Corp., where he previously served as general counsel, chief financial officer, and chief operating officer. He is a former chair of the Oklahoma City School Board, where he served between 2001 and 2008. In 1994, Mr. Hudson was appointed by President Clinton to chair the Securities Investor Protection Corporation, where he served until 2001.

Yolanda Kakabadse, president of WWF International and senior adviser of the Ecuador-based Fundación Futuro Latinoamericano, which she founded in 1993 to promote sustainable development in Latin America. Ms. Kakabadse was minister of environment for the Republic of Ecuador from 1998 to 2000, and is a past president of the World Conservation Union. She currently serves as a technical advisor to the United Nations Environment Program and its Global Environment Facility.

Robert Kaplan, professor of management practice at Harvard Business School and a senior director of The Goldman Sachs Group. He is board chair of the Jewish Theological Seminary and board chair of Project ALS. He served as interim CEO of the Harvard Management Company, the group responsible for managing Harvard's endowment, from November 2007 until June 2009.

Thurgood Marshall Jr., partner in the international law firm of Bingham McCutchen LLP in Washington, D.C., and a principal at Bingham Consulting Group. He served in the Clinton White House as assistant to the president and Secretary to the Cabinet, coordinating relations with executive branch departments from 1997 to 2001. He sits on the board of governors of the U.S. Postal Service, and the board of the National Women's Law Center.

Richard Moe, president of the National Trust for Historic Preservation. He held positions in government at the city, state and federal levels and practiced law at Davis Polk & Wardwell in Washington, D.C. before assuming the presidency of the National Trust in 1993. (Mr. Moe completes his term on the board in September.)

N.R. Narayana Murthy, chairman of the board and chief mentor of Infosys Technologies Ltd., one of the world's largest software services firms, which he co-founded in India in 1981. He is also council chairman of the Asia Business Council. Mr. Murthy also serves on the boards of several global companies, including Unilever, HSBC and NDTV. He is a member of the advisory boards and councils of several educational institutions, including The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, Cornell University, Stanford Graduate School of Business, University of Tokyo, and others.

Peter Nadosy, managing partner of East End Advisors. Until 2008, he served as president and vice chairman of Morgan Stanley Asset Management. He has served as a board member of WWF USA, as chair of the Amherst College investment committee, and since 2004 as a board member of the Harvard Management Company, where he was also interim CEO from summer 2005 to March 2006.

Cecile Richards, president of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America and the Planned Parenthood Action Fund. Earlier she served as deputy chief of staff for House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, and in 2004, founded and served as president of America Votes, a coalition of 42 national organizations working on voter registration, education and mobilization.

W. Richard West Jr., founding director and director emeritus of the Smithsonian's National Museum of the American Indian. West, a member of the Cheyenne and Arapaho tribes of Oklahoma, was previously a partner in the Washington, D.C., office of Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson and, subsequently, in the Indian-owned law firm of Gover, Stetson, Williams & West, P.C., in Albuquerque. Mr. West is on the boards of Stanford University, the Kaiser Family Foundation, and the National Parks Conservation Association.

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The Ford Foundation

The Ford Foundation is an independent, nonprofit grant-making organization. For more than 80 years it has worked with courageous people 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. With headquarters in New York, the foundation has offices in Latin America, Africa, the Middle East, and Asia.