November 16, 2022
It is an honor to write this letter as the new Chief Executive Officer of the Sacramento Region Community Foundation — your community foundation. I step into the role with immense admiration and gratitude for the chief executive of the last decade, Linda Beech Cutler. Because of her leadership, the commitment of our team, and the generosity of partners like you over the past 40 years, the Foundation is well-positioned for a bright, bold future.
Over the last few months, our Board of Directors and staff have carefully and critically considered the Foundation’s role in the capital area and developed a new Strategic Plan that charges us to grow the philanthropic resources available to the Sacramento region, enhance our leadership activities, and ensure all our efforts are rooted in — and advance — diversity, equity, and inclusion.
In doing so, we’ll position the Foundation to most effectively carry out ambitious work that responds to our region’s greatest needs and creates an enduring source of philanthropic funding to make major and meaningful investments in perpetuity. By their nature, these investments will be in the strength of our local nonprofit sector and those who benefit from it — which, after all, is everyone in our community.
Truly, community is at the heart of all we do. We believe the best efforts to achieve a just and vibrant Sacramento region will start with listening, and as we move forward, we must ensure that those whose voices have been unheard in the past are included alongside those who’ve helped advance our work for years. In the year ahead, under the leadership of our Chief Impact & Strategy Officer, Niva Flor, we’ll conduct a comprehensive community engagement process to better understand our region’s most pressing needs and priorities. This will include community conversations, listening and learning sessions, and other ways we’ll connect with you to, together, define the Foundation’s areas of focus into the future.
Reflecting our aspirations for this work are new vision, mission, and value statements, which I’m proud to share:
As we look ahead, I'd like to acknowledge Jim McCallum, our Chief Financial Officer. Since he joined the Foundation 17 years ago, Jim has helped countless people achieve their philanthropic goals. He is one of the kindest, most mission-focused professionals I’ve worked alongside, so it is bittersweet that he’ll retire at the end of the year. Jim will be succeeded by Edward Harris, who has been our Senior Director of Finance for the past two years and who brings over 25 years of experience in finance and accounting to the role, including work with Sonoma County Community Foundation, Silicon Valley Community Foundation, and more than ten years at the East Bay Community Foundation — so we remain in excellent hands!
I close this letter with special thanks to those members of our Board of Directors who volunteered countless hours over the past year to articulate the next phase of our work: Elaine Abelaye-Mateo, Karen Baker, Kathy McKim, Cassandra Walker Pye, Kate Stille, Martin Steiner, Renee Taylor, and Steven Weiss.
I also offer thanks to you, our partners in the community. This is an exciting time for the Foundation and a pivotal time in our region. As I’ve said more than once recently, while there’s much that’s “new” at the Foundation, one thing will never change: our commitment to helping people, like you, make a difference.
Kerry Wood, CFRE
Chief Executive Officer
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