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Who We Are

The Social Impact Exchange was launched by the Growth Philanthropy Network (GPN), in partnership with Duke University - Center for Strategic Philanthropy and Civil Society (CSPCS) and its Center for the Advancement of Social Entrepreneurship (CASE)

Social Impact Exchange Staff

 

About the Social Impact Exchange Staff

Alexander Rossides - President and Co-Founder

Alexander Rossides brings extensive experience as a social entrepreneur, business executive and investor to GPN. Mr. Rossides has led both nonprofit and for-profit organizations. He has experience managing the growth of organizations, raising capital, developing affiliate networks and partnerships, and developing systems and technologies that enable information and knowledge sharing. Mr. Rossides served as the CEO of Interactive Video Technologies (IVT), a company he helped found and grow into a leading provider of online video technology that was successfully sold. Prior to IVT, he served as Managing Director of Digital Evolution Venture Capital (DE), where he managed the operations of the firm, raised investment capital for portfolio companies, oversaw investments in healthcare, technology and media companies and served as a Board member in a number of DE portfolio companies. Prior to DE, Mr. Rossides served as a management consultant at Towers Perrin in the strategy and organizational effectiveness practice, where he focused on client engagements in the public, health and financial sectors.
 
In the social sector Mr. Rossides´ focus has been in the areas of civic engagement, and youth education and development. In 1990 Mr. Rossides founded and led the Corporate Community Initiative, a non-profit organization in New York City devoted to facilitating corporate volunteerism and delivering management assistance to nonprofits. In 1997 he initiated a college assistance program for students in inner-city Boston. Mr. Rossides has served in numerous volunteer and advisory positions with other nonprofits. He received his BA from Dartmouth College in 1986 and his MBA from Columbia Business School in 1996.

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Kaberi Banerjee Murthy - Deputy Vice President, Education

Kaberi Banerjee Murthy joined Growth Philanthropy Network in August 2014, bringing a dozen years of experience as a grantmaker at the local, regional and national level. Most recently she served as a Program Director at Crown Family Philanthropies, leading the Education, Arts & Culture, and Civic Affairs portfolios. Prior to that, she served as Senior Program Officer at the Picower Foundation in New York, focusing on K-12 and Out-of-School-Time, as a Philanthropic Advisor at Hemenway & Barnes in Boston, staffing Jane’s Trust and the Cox Trust, and as a Program Officer at the Lloyd A. Fry Foundation in Chicago, working on Education, Health, Community Development and Arts & Culture. She has also served as a philanthropic consult to Ford Foundation’s GrantCraft, Grant Management Associates and the Council on Foundations. Before entering philanthropy, Kaberi was an advertising executive at Leo Burnett. Kaberi graduated from Carleton College with a BA in History and Women's Studies, and received a Minnesota teaching certification for high school Social Studies. She holds a Masters of Education from Harvard University, with a focus on planning and social policy.

Kaberi is a current Board Member for the Crossroads Fund and a past National Board Member for Grantmakers in Education. She was a Leadership Greater Chicago Fellow and a Chicago Council on Global Affairs Emerging Leader. She has served on several boards including: Resource Generation, Casa Myrna and Sakhi; several advisory boards including the Carleton College’s Alumni Council and Chicago Foundation for Women; and a number of giving circles, including the Saffron Circle in Boston and the Asian Giving Circle in Chicago.

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Karen Epstein - Vice President, Finance and Administration

Karen Schub Epstein came to GPN back in 2005. She had previously worked in the private sector where she focused on operations, finance and accounting. Karen is a CPA who started her career in public accounting at Ernst and Young. She left to join Bohbot Media and Entertainment, a children’s entertainment company then contemplating an initial public offering. After guiding them through that process, Karen joined The Interpublic Group of Companies where she spent the next eight years in various roles, including CFO of an international sports and entertainment company, and Vice President of a $500 million holding company which she helped launch. During her time at Interpublic, she focused on mergers and acquisitions, investor relations, financial analysis, human resources, systems implementations, business development and strategy.

Ms. Epstein devotes considerable time to volunteer activities. She is currently the Treasurer of the Chatsworth Avenue PTA and on the Board of the Mamaroneck Schools Foundation. She was previously the Chair of the Steering Committee of the Larchmont Temple Nursery School and served on the Board of the Larchmont Newcomers Club, in addition to having chaired numerous UJA events. She graduated magna cum laude from the University of Pennsylvania with degrees in accounting and psychology, and graduated from the Executive MBA program at Columbia University with honors.

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Jennifer F. Klot - Vice President, Health

Jennifer F. Klot brings to GPN more than thirty years of experience in the non-profit, academic, philanthropic, and multilateral sectors. Previously, she was Senior Adviser at the Social Science Research Council (SSRC) where she established new cross-sector collaborations to address emerging social, economic and public health challenges. Bringing together U.S. government health research institutes, philanthropic leaders, policy shapers, and social and basic science researchers, she catalyzed new funding collaborations to improve research and public health approaches to HIV/AIDS, violence against women, and children’s health and well-being. She also provided strategic planning, research, and evaluation support to private foundations and multilateral organizations to strengthen international funding strategies in development, human rights and security sectors. Before the SSRC, she spent ten years at the United Nations working in various capacities with the United Nations Children's Fund and the UN Development Fund for Women. Before joining the UN, she was the Acting Executive Director of the Fund for Education in South Africa and, prior to this, the Regional Representative for the southern Africa office of Ashoka: Innovators for the Public. In South Africa, she also worked with PlanAct, a community development organization, and recorded and toured internationally with the African Jazz Pioneers, a South African jazz and cultural group.

Jennifer is a member of the Scientific Committee of the French National Research Agency on AIDS and Viral Hepatitis and has served on NIH scientific review committees in population science, global partnerships for social science AIDS research, and HIV prevention through reproductive health. She has co-edited five books, and authored numerous peer reviewed journal articles, as well as program and policy evaluations in the health the development sectors. She received a Master of Regional Planning from Cornell University and a BA in Political Science and Economics from Douglass College, Rutgers University.  

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Antoinette La Belle - Managing Director, Network Partnerships

Antoinette (Toni) La Belle joined Growth Philanthropy Network/Social Impact Exchange in January of 2014. She comes to GPN most recently from Civic Ventures (now known as Encore.org), where she was a Senior Fellow focusing on corporate career transition models. She was also the East Coast Director with startup responsibility for the board-approved national expansion of the Encore Fellowship Program. She spent most of her career in the private sector as an executive working in the areas of organization development, strategic business and human capital strategies, and change management initiatives. She concluded her corporate career in 2007 as a Managing Director at Lehman Brothers to enter a doctoral program at Case Western Reserve University, Weatherhead School of Management and to continue her civic engagement endeavors. Her doctoral research was a comparison study of the professional and situational influences on nonprofit leaders’ effectiveness; articles based on her research have been featured by The Bridgespan Group and BoardSource.

Her “activist” philanthropic and volunteer involvement supports initiatives and organizations helping “level the playing field” by working for social and economic justice and well being for vulnerable populations. She is a past board officer of The New York Women’s Foundation, Taproot Foundation, and The Viscardi Center and currently serves on the board of the Nonprofit Coordinating Committee of New York. In addition to her doctorate, she holds an MBA from Fordham University and a BS from Marymount College.

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Sunny Larson - Senior Director, Education

Sunny Larson joined GPN in September 2014. Prior to GPN, she spent close to a decade at The Fund for Public Schools, the nonprofit organization that raises funds and facilitates public-private partnerships on behalf of the New York City Department of Education. In her role as Managing Director, she led collaborations with stakeholders across business, philanthropy, city government, and other nonprofit and community-based organizations.  During her time at The Fund, the organization raised hundreds of millions of dollars to support strategic district-wide education initiatives and grew from fundraising for a small slate of projects to an organization with dozens of major multi-year grants and deep partnerships in the education sector.   

Sunny graduated cum laude from Yale University, with a B.A. in history and international studies, and received a Master’s degree with distinction from the University of Edinburgh, Scotland, in nationalism studies. She currently sits on the board of the Yale Club of New York City.

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David Nee - Senior Consultant, Education

David Nee grew up in a housing project in South Boston, Massachusetts, in one of the poorest urban neighborhoods in America.  Since retiring from the Graustein Memorial Fund in 2014, he has acted as a senior consultant to the Social Impact Exchange, with a primary focus on early childhood and K-12 education.

Nee became the first executive director of the William Caspar Graustein Memorial Fund in 1993.  The Memorial Fund works collaboratively to improve education for Connecticut’s children by supporting school change, informing the public debate on educational issues, and strengthening the involvement of parents and the community in education. Before coming to the Memorial Fund, Nee was executive director of the Ittleson Foundation and of the Florence V. Burden Foundation. In 1989 with Martin Greller, Nee co-authored From Baby-Boom to Baby-Bust:  How Business Can Deal With the Demographic Challenge.  The book examines organizational strategies to address the human resources crisis facing us in the public, private and nonprofit sectors.

Nee has exercised national leadership in the fields of aging, crime and justice, mental health, AIDS, and the environment.  Mr. Nee has chaired the boards of the Institute for Community Peace, the New York Regional Association of Grantmakers, and the Connecticut Council for Philanthropy.   He has also served on the boards of the Connecticut Academy for Education in Math Science and Technology, Grantmakers for Children Youth and Families, and the National Community AIDS Partnership. He founded and continues to serve on the Board of the Connecticut Center for School Change, as well as CT Nonprofits and Connecticut Voices for Children.  Nee co-chaired the Governor’s Early Childhood Research and Policy Council from 2006-2009.

Nee graduated from Harvard College, holds a master’ degree in English from Yale University, and a master’s degree in business administration from Boston University. 

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Elizabeth Ramirez - Senior Manager, Network Partnerships

Elizabeth joined Social Impact Exchange in August 2014 and brings diverse experience in domestic and international philanthropy from leading corporate and operating foundations. She came to GPN from the Levi Strauss Foundation, where she managed the foundation’s signature leadership development and technology capacity building initiative, stewarded a global human rights grant portfolio, and led reporting to the board of directors and external field-building efforts. She began her career in the executive office of the United Nations Foundation, working directly with senior staff and the board of directors to advance public-private partnerships addressing critical international development issues. She subsequently served at the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunizations Fund, where she developed relationships with untapped constituencies to broaden awareness and developed new fundraising mechanisms in partnership with for-profit corporations. 

Elizabeth is personally dedicated to leadership development in the social sector, and has served on the advisory boards or steering committees of Atlas Service Corps, Emerging Practitioners in Philanthropy’s Bay Area and Washington, DC chapters, and Full Circle Fund’s Rising Leaders. She graduated magna cum laude from George Washington University’s Elliott School of International Affairs. Elizabeth is a dual citizen of the U.S. and Brazil and lives in New York.

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Tamara Schweitzer Raben - Communications Consultant

Tamara Schweitzer Raben joined the GPN staff in December 2011 as the Knowledge Management Associate, and currently works remotely from Los Angeles as the Exchange's Communications Consultant. She started in the nonprofit sector after a career in journalism, and she brings several years of experience writing about the social impact space for leading online and print publications. Prior to GPN, Tamara was the executive editor of Socialbrite.org, a website that provides nonprofits with the resources to make better use of social media to advance their missions and become more effective organizations.

Tamara brings to GPN a deep knowledge of the private sector; she started her career as a staff reporter for Inc. Magazine, where she covered entrepreneurship and small business for both the magazine and website. Tamara has also worked with start-ups and social ventures as an independent communications strategist, helping organizations craft communications campaigns and conducting media outreach to increase their visibility in the field. 

Tamara received a Master’s degree from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism, and a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of Michigan.

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Anne Sherman - Vice President, Nonprofit Strategy

Anne Sherman is Vice President, Nonprofit Strategy at Growth Philanthropy Network. Before GPN, she was Director of Strategy at TCC Group, a consultancy that assists nonprofits, foundations, and corporate community involvement programs. Prior to TCC Group, she was community initiatives manager at Minneapolis Way To Grow, a citywide school-readiness initiative. Sherman holds a master’s degree in public affairs from the University of Minnesota Hubert H. Humphrey Institute for Public Affairs. Her volunteer work includes serving as chair of the governing body of the Center for Family Life in Sunset Park, Brooklyn, and as a member of the board of SCO Family of Services. She also serves on the selection committee of the New York Community Trust-New York Magazine Nonprofit Excellence Awards. Sherman is the co-author of Building Nonprofit Capacity: A Guide to Managing Change Through Organizational Lifecycles, published in 2011 by Jossey-Bass

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Robert Sherman - Vice President, Education

Robert F. Sherman Ph.D. provides expertise  in the areas of education reform, youth development and leadership, and civic engagement. His particular interest is in bringing isolated yet related perspectives and favored strategies into productive alignment for greater impact. Prior to his engagement with the Exchange, Sherman was Director of the Initiative for Social and Emotional Learning at the NoVo Foundation. 

Prior to NoVo, Sherman served as Executive Director of the Action Center to End World Hunger, a division of Mercy Corps. While at Mercy Corps, he also developed and supervised the agency’s Global Citizen Corps, a youth activist and service program.  

Before joining Mercy Corps, Sherman spent 15 years at the Surdna Foundation, where he founded and directed the national Effective Citizenry program, an initiative designed to support organizations helping young people participate meaningfully in shaping civic and community life. The Effective Citizenry program funded youth organizing, youth media, policy development, service-learning and a range of youth development strategies which promote individual growth and youth-led social change. 

Prior to Surdna, Sherman served in New York City government for 8 years: as Executive Director of the Increase the Peace Volunteer Corps, a city-wide, grassroots race relations initiative of the Mayor’s office in New York City; and as Director of the Community Relations Institute, a think tank studying neighborhood-based responses to racial tension housed at the New York City Commission on Human Rights. 

Sherman holds a Ph.D. in clinical psychology from the Institute of Advanced Psychological Studies at Adelphi University, and a BA from Haverford College.

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Monica Ward - Senior Manager, Nonprofit Strategy

Monica Ward joined GPN in August of 2012 as the Nonprofit Initiatives Manager. Prior to GPN she was the Deputy Director of the YouthBuild Newark Intermediary Initiative, where she managed the organization's replication efforts in New Jersey, as well as assisted with their strategic growth plan. Before YouthBuild, Ms. Ward spent over 12 years in the nonprofit sector working for national nonprofits and intermediaries, such as the Corporation for Supportive Housing and the Council of State Governments on a range of social issues including mental health, substance abuse, criminal justice and housing. Ms. Ward holds a Master's in Public Policy from The Johns Hopkins University and a B.A in Public Policy from Duke University.

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