Press Release

Jamie Merisotis Becomes Council on Foundations' Board Chair

The Council on Foundations today announced that Lumina Foundation President and CEO Jamie Merisotis has assumed the role of Chair of the Board of Directors. Merisotis was elected in November 2018, and began his term as Board Chair at the Council’s Leading Together 2019 conference. He succeeds Javier Soto, who has served as Chair since 2017 and will remain on the board. Merisotis previously served as Board Vice Chair for two years.

“Philanthropy plays a vital role in communities around the country and across the globe. In today’s environment, where society is more divided than ever, philanthropy unites with a purpose to serve the common good,” Merisotis said. “I am honored by the opportunity to serve as Board Chair and look forward to further advancing the Council’s important work.” 

Since 2008, Jamie Merisotis has led Lumina, an independent, private foundation that is committed to making opportunities for learning beyond high school available to all. He previously served as co-founder and president of the nonpartisan, Washington, D.C.-based Institute for Higher Education Policy, and as executive director of a bipartisan national commission on college affordability appointed by the president and congressional leaders.

“Jamie is not only a passionate advocate for our sector but also an extraordinarily seasoned board chair, and I look forward to working with him as we re-energize the Council and do more to help our members advance their missions.” said Council President and CEO Kathleen P. Enright. “Jamie succeeds Javier Soto, who has been such a steadying force during the transition. His commitment and service have been inspiring, and I thank him for his leadership.”

Merisotis joins additional Council board officers, including Tonya Allen, president and CEO of The Skillman Foundation; Kathleen McLaughlin, president of Walmart Foundation; Kenneth M. Jones, II, Vice President, Finance and Administration, of The Annie E. Casey Foundation; and R. Randall Royster, president and CEO of Albuquerque Community Foundation.  

For a full listing of the Council’s board of directors, visit


About the Council on Foundations
An active philanthropic network, the Council on Foundations (, founded in 1949, is a nonprofit leadership association of grantmaking foundations and corporations. It provides the opportunity, leadership, and tools needed by philanthropic organizations to expand, enhance and sustain their ability to advance the common good. With members from all foundation types and sizes, the Council empowers professionals in philanthropy to meet today’s toughest challenges and advances a culture of charitable giving in the U.S. and globally.

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