Press Release

Council on Foundations Names Daniel Lee, Former Executive Director of Levi Strauss Foundation, as New Executive-in-Residence

The Council on Foundations is pleased to announce that Daniel Lee has joined the executive office as the newest member of the executive-in-residence program. An expert practitioner of strategic grantmaking, leadership development, and DEI, he currently serves as Vice President of the Board of Directors for the National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy and has also served on the boards of Grantmakers for Effective Organizations, Funders Concerned About AIDS, and the Astraea Foundation. He recently stepped down from his position as executive director of the Levi Strauss Foundation after over 10 years in the role. From 2011 to 2017, Lee served as a Council on Foundations board member and became well-versed in the Council’s mission and role in the field.

“Returning to the Council is exciting given its new momentum and magnitude in the field of philanthropy,” Lee said. “I’m keen to delve into this portfolio and see that incoming executives in the sector are equipped with the tools they need to advance equity and flourish as leaders.”

Lee’s portfolio will include a focus on leadership development — specifically programming and peer connections for CEOs who are new to their roles or to executive leadership. While at the Levi Strauss Foundation, he supported the design and implementation of Pioneers in Justice, a program that invests in nonprofit leaders of color to augment their skill sets, partnerships, and approaches to social justice. He embodies the Council’s commitment to embracing better ways of operating through his track record of encouraging excellence in both professional and personal development.

Participants in the Council’s executive-in-residence program are embedded within the Council for six- to twelve-month assignments, during which time they work with Council staff to lay the groundwork for new bodies of work. Sharon Alpert, the inaugural participant in the program and the former President and CEO of the Nathan Cummings Foundation, finished her term early in 2022.

"I am thrilled Daniel is re-joining Council leadership in this new role," said Kathleen Enright, President and CEO of the Council on Foundations. "Daniel brings deep experience and wisdom that will benefit both members as well as the Council staff and board. He is sure to create the dynamic learning and relationship-building experiences that CEOs value."

Lee received a bachelor’s degree from Princeton University, a Master of Divinity from Harvard University, and an Honorary Doctor of Sacred Theology from the Starr King School for the Ministry. He is based in San Francisco, CA.


About the Council on Foundations

The Council on Foundations exists to help philanthropy be a trusted partner in advancing the greater good. Building on our 70-year history, we are charting a course where funders earn and maintain the public's trust by advancing equity, operating with high integrity, collaborating on broadscale challenges, and serving as ethical stewards. Learn more about the Council and become a member by visiting

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