Jessica Spohn Appointed Interim President; Michael Carey Appointed Interim Chief Executive Officer; Dr. Warren Simmons Appointed Board Chair
QUINCY, MA (January 25, 2023) — Today, the Nellie Mae Education Foundation (NMEF) Board of Directors is announcing that Jessica Spohn, Director of Grantmaking, will serve as interim President and Michael Carey, Vice President for Finance and Administration, will serve as interim Chief Executive Officer (CEO), effective immediately. Spohn and Carey’s appointment comes after outgoing interim President and CEO Dr. Gislaine Ngounou’s resignation became effective this month.
“As longtime members of the Foundation, Michael and Jessica possess incredible institutional knowledge as well as an array of experiences and skills that are needed in this moment. It has been an honor to work and learn with them over the past four years. I am thankful that they have agreed to step into more leadership roles to support the Foundation’s work, team, community partners, and Board during this time of transition. I wish them both the best as they embark on this new journey!” — Dr. Gislaine N. Ngounou, outgoing interim President and CEO, Nellie Mae Education Foundation.
Spohn and Carey will serve as major philanthropic thought leaders on education equity and justice in K-12 public schools throughout New England, as well as leverage sustainable strategies to support systems change within the national school system. The Board of Directors, aided by Diversified Search Group, is currently engaged in a nationwide search for a permanent president and CEO for the Foundation.
“The board has complete confidence in Jessica Spohn’s and Michael Carey’s abilities to perform their new roles as interim President and interim Chief Executive Officer respectively. Their leadership is informed by a long history of thoughtful and principled collaboration with the staff, the Board, and the community served by the Foundation. Their insights and knowledge of the organization and its role in education reform in the region will ensure that the existing work proceeds effectively while the Board completes its search for a new leader who will build on the current work. Once again, on behalf of the board I want to express my gratitude to Gislaine Ngounou for being a passionate and faithful shepherd during this challenging period.” — Dr. Warren Simmons, Board Chair, Nellie Mae Education Foundation
The Foundation is also pleased to announce the appointment of Dr. Warren Simmons as Board Chair. Dr. Simmons is a long-time member of the Foundation’s Board, serving on the Governance and Grants Policy Committees. As the former Executive Director for the Annenberg Institute for School Reform, Dr. Simmons led the field in improving outcomes and practices in urban schools. Dr. Simmons is also the founding Director of the Philadelphia Education Fund.
“It has been a great honor to serve the Nellie Mae Education Foundation as Board Chair over the last three years. I am excited for Nellie Mae to continue doing its critical work and for my esteemed colleague Dr. Warren Simmons to lead as Chair in this next stage.” — Greg Gunn, outgoing Board Chair, Nellie Mae Education Foundation
“The Foundation has been on a path to transform itself and to embody values and practices that bring about racial equity and justice in public education. Dr. Warren Simmons has been a part of that journey as a longtime member of the Board. As Chair, he is well positioned to continue to champion and build on the good work that has been happening, in partnership with colleagues, a dedicated staff, and community partners.” — Dr. Gislaine N. Ngounou, outgoing interim President and CEO, Nellie Mae Education Foundation
Please join us in welcoming Spohn, Carey, and Dr. Simmons to their new roles. We look forward to their leadership and how they will expand the philanthropic role of the Nellie Mae Education Foundation in New England.