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Craig Drinkard appointed Co-Executive Officer


On behalf of the trustees of Victoria Foundation, it gives me great pleasure to announce that starting January 1st Craig Drinkard will serve as Co-Executive Officer alongside Irene Cooper-Basch, who introduced this concept to the attention of trustees. This co-leadership model is virtually non-existent in the private foundation sector where 92% of leaders are white, but we believe it aligns well with our strategic planning efforts of the past year and our emerging values to center community and to shift our grantmaking towards racial, social, and economic justice. We believe the quality of decisions will improve with two strong and complementary leaders thinking through issues collectively with staff. Born and raised in Newark, New Jersey, Craig has worked at Victoria Foundation for 15 years, starting out as a Program Officer and receiving several promotions, most recently to serve as Deputy Director.

Many of you know Craig and are well aware of the strengths he brings to this new role—a remarkably skilled and judicious communicator, lived experiences growing up in Newark with deep relationships among community leaders and local residents, an empathic leader and coach, strong connections to the New Jersey and national philanthropic sector—to name just a few. It is virtually impossible to walk down any Newark street with Craig (prior to the pandemic) and not wait while he hugs and greets yet another friend.

As staff and trustees continue our strategic planning journey through June 2021, we intend to look and reconsider internal and external traditional practices, including shifting the use of our resources and tools to work side-by-side Black and Brown Newark leaders and residents for the change they want to see. This new paradigm of moving forward with co-leaders exemplifies this commitment.

Please join me in welcoming Craig in the new year as Victoria's Co-Executive Officer.

Be Safe,

Frank Alvarez

VF Board President

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Tuesday, 16 April 2024

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Victoria Foundation
550 Broad St
Suite 1402
Newark, NJ 07102


Ph. 973-792-9200
Fax 973-792-1300
e-mail info@victoriafoundation.org