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Matt Conti

Barr Foundation Appoints Two New Trustees

Emerson College President Lee Pelton and energy expert Sue Tierney to join board of the $1.7 billion private foundation.

The Barr Foundation is pleased to announce the appointments of Dr. M. Lee Pelton and Dr. Susan Tierney to its Board of Trustees. Elected to three-year terms beginning September 2017, they will join Barr’s founding trustees, Barbara and Amos Hostetter, and president, Jim Canales.

“As Barr has grown, as its work has matured, and with ambitious new strategies for advancing a set of critical issues over the long-term, we have recognized the importance of expanding governance beyond the founding family,” said Barbara W. Hostetter, co-founder and board chair of the Barr Foundation. “We were pleased to invite Jim Canales to join us as president and trustee in 2014, and now, at a time when the challenges and urgency of progress are greater than ever, we look forward to this first step in broadening Barr’s governance, and to the considerable experience and wisdom Sue and Lee will bring to the Foundation’s work.”

"As Barr has grown, and its work has matured...we have recognized the importance of expanding governance beyond the founding family." –Barbara Hostetter
Barr Foundation Appoints Two New Trustees

“Barr will benefit significantly from Lee Pelton’s and Sue Tierney’s engagement. They bring a broad range of expertise, both in and beyond Barr’s focus areas, in addition to significant experience in leadership and governance,” said Jim Canales, Barr Foundation president and trustee. “Lee and Sue also exhibit that rare combination of exceptional professional accomplishment combined with humility and intellectual curiosity. Their values align well with Barr’s, and they will play a pivotal role as we continue our work as a regionally-focused and nationally-engaged funder, and as we deploy the largest grantmaking budget in the Foundation’s history this year.”

"Barr will benefit significantly from Lee Pelton’s and Sue Tierney’s engagement. They bring a broad range of expertise, both in and beyond Barr’s focus areas, in addition to significant experience in leadership and governance." –Jim Canales

Lee Pelton became president of Emerson College in 2011, after 13 years as president of Willamette University in Salem, Oregon. He is a well-respected thought and innovation leader, recognized, among many awards, in Boston magazine’s May 2017 Power Issue, “The 21 Most Powerful People in Boston Business,” and in its May 2014 Power Issue, “The Power of Ideas: 75 Bold Thinkers Who Are Shaping Our City and the World.” He is an internationally known speaker and writer on the value of a liberal education and the importance of leadership development, civic engagement, and diversity in higher education. He earned his bachelor’s degree at Wichita State University and his Ph.D. at Harvard University, where he taught English and American literature and later served on the Board of Overseers. After Harvard, he served as dean of the college at Colgate University and at Dartmouth College. President Pelton is chair of the Boston Arts Academy and serves on many other boards, including those of the Museum of African American History; Trinity College, Hartford; and WGBH. With Jim Canales, he co-chaired the Leadership Council of Boston Creates, the citywide cultural planning process. He is a past chair of the American Council on Education and has been active in other national higher education associations.

Sue Tierney is a senior advisor at Analysis Group, where she was managing principal from 2003 through 2014 in Boston. She is an expert on energy policy and economics, specializing in the electric and gas industries, and has consulted broadly on energy markets, as well as economic and environmental regulation and strategy. She served as commissioner of the Department of Public Utilities under Governor Dukakis, as secretary of environmental affairs under Governor Weld, and as assistant secretary for policy at the U.S. Department of Energy under President Clinton. She chairs the board of ClimateWorks, chairs the External Advisory Board of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, and is a director of the World Resources Institute and other organizations. Dr. Tierney earned a bachelor’s degree in art history from Scripps College and a master’s degree and Ph.D. in regional planning and public policy from Cornell University.

The Barr Foundation is currently governed by its two founding trustees and president. Together with Tierney and Pelton, the Foundation’s expanded board will provide strategic direction and fiscal oversight for all of Barr’s affairs.

Media Contact:

Stefan Lanfer
Director of Communications
617.854.3404
slanfer[at]barrfoundation.org  

About the Barr Foundation

The Barr Foundation’s mission is to invest in human, natural, and creative potential, serving as thoughtful stewards and catalysts. Based in Boston, Barr focuses regionally, and selectively engages nationally, working in partnership with nonprofits, foundations, the public sector, and civic and business leaders to elevate the arts, advance solutions for climate change, and connect all students to success in high school and beyond. With assets of $1.7 billion, Barr is among the largest private foundations in New England and has contributed more than $834 million to charitable causes since 1999.

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