The Board of the Fund for the City of New York announced today that its long-time President, Mary McCormick, will step down on September 1st. She will be succeeded by Lisette Nieves, a social entrepreneur who has built and led organizations in New York City and nationally.
Maggie Boepple, the Chair of the Fund's board said, "On behalf of the Board, I want to thank Mary for her years of leadership to the Fund. She is quiet, brilliant, determined and, with an exceptional team, has been at the forefront of both innovating as well as responding to the challenges of the City, never forgetting the Fund's core mission is to improve the quality of life for all New Yorkers."
During her tenure, the Fund's budget has grown to $100 million dollars, its Cash Flow Loan Program has lent over $1.3 billion dollars in interest-free bridge financing to the city's nonprofits and it has almost 1,000 employees, many of whom are part of the Fund's acclaimed Partner Project Program.
Among its initiatives have been Parenthood Plus, E-Community Connect, the NYC Managers Exchange Program with Japan, the LaGuardia Fellows Program, School Building Scorecard, Sterling Forest Strategic Planning Initiative, The MDR Tuberculosis Response, Performing Arts Recovery Program, METRIX, Strategic Planning for Government and Nonprofits, Sloan Public Service Awards, Sloan Awards for Excellence in Teaching Science and Math in NYC High Schools, and the Community Planning Fellows.
McCormick said, "I leave the Fund with a sense of accomplishment and a deep appreciation for the dedication and talent of so many people in city government and nonprofits organizations we have collaborated with who make up the invisible, unrecognized backbone of this city to whom we are all in debt. But I also leave with a sense of how far we have yet to go to realize our vision of what this world class city can and should be for all its residents. The city is fortunate indeed to welcome Lisette Nieves as the Fund's new leader."
Mary will be succeeded by Lisette Nieves, who is currently the Director of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies at NYU Steinhardt where she co-founded the Doctorate in Leadership and Innovation and has published on workforce and career pathways. A social entrepreneur and public service leader, Lisette is also a life-long resident of New York. She states, "I thank Mary for her leadership in building an institution that has and will continue to make a positive impact on this great city. I look forward to continuing and expanding the important work of the Fund."
Mary McCormick has long been recognized as a social entrepreneur, particularly skilled at adapting emerging technologies for the benefit of government, nonprofit agencies, communities and families. Included among the many boards she has served on are YouthBuild USA, the White House Project, the National Center on State Courts, Robin Hood Foundation and the Mayor's Fund to Advance New York City. She was named by Mayor Michael Bloomberg to chair his Transition Committee on Social Services, served as a member of the Mayor's Committee on Appointments and was later appointed to the 2006 New York City Charter Revision Commission. Mayor Edward Koch appointed Ms. McCormick to the New York City Youth Board and the Commission on Four–Year Old Education. Ms. McCormick co-founded the Food Bank for New York City and served on the boards of Bargemusic, Elisa Monte Dance, and the Advisory Board of Ensemble Studio Theater. She received the Luther Gulick Award for Outstanding Leadership in Public Affairs, the first national New Leadership Skills Award and an inaugural Civic Fame Award from New York Law School. In 2001, Fast Company magazine recognized Ms. McCormick for her pioneering use of technology to improve communities. She is an honors graduate of Harvard College and holds an M.A. from New York University and an M.B.A. and Ph.D. from Columbia University.
Lisette Nieves is currently the Director of Educational Leadership and full Clinical Professor of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies at NYU Steinhardt. Lisette holds a B.A. from Brooklyn College, a B.A./M.A. from the University of Oxford, an M.P.A. from the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton University and a doctorate with distinction in Higher Education Management at the University of Pennsylvania. She is a Truman Scholar, Rhodes Scholar, and an Aspen Pahara Fellow. For over 25 years, Lisette has served in a variety of government, nonprofit and academic leadership positions. Lisette founded Lingo Ventures which is focused on growth, talent recruitment/retention, and change management. Lisette served as the Belle Zeller Distinguished Visiting Professor in Public Policy at the City University of New York at Brooklyn College. She most recently served as an Obama appointee on the White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for Hispanics, where she co-chaired the higher education subcommittee. Lisette was the founding Executive Director of Year Up NY, an innovative workforce development program, wherein the span of five years she grew the organization from a $250,000 seed grant to a $6 million operation with over 20 corporate partnerships. Her interest in workforce and education led to her dissertation on the relationship between student work and school roles, for which she received the 2016 Dissertation of the Year Award by the NCSD – AACC. Her board affiliations include serving as the Board Chair at Guttman Community College Foundation, Stand for Children, Edwin Gould Foundation, NewSchools Venture Fund, and serving as Vice-Chair of Fund for the City of New York. Her areas of interest include community colleges, college pathways, workforce and education partnerships.
The Fund for the City of New York was established by the Ford Foundation in 1968 with the mandate to improve the quality of life for all New Yorkers. The Fund achieves this mission by being responsive to the issues of New York City and opportunities to improve the performance of its government and nonprofits. All of the Fund's accomplishments are the result of creative partnerships with foundations, government agencies, community-based organizations, the private sector and universities in New York.