A Message from our Board Chair

Today, we are pleased to announce the Community Foundation’s next leader.

After a months-long national search, Central New York Community Foundation Board Chair Dan Fisher is pleased to send word that Melanie Littlejohn has been selected as the Community Foundation’s next President and CEO.

Dear Central New York community,

I am writing to share some exciting news.

Over the past eight months, the Central New York Community Foundation has undertaken a national search to find its next President and CEO. Today, we are pleased to announce the Community Foundation’s next leader.

Melanie Littlejohn has a solid track record of authentically connecting and deeply partnering with community residents in Central New York. Through her long-standing leadership role at National Grid and her endless commitment to civic engagement, philanthropy and mentorship, she has gained intimate knowledge and passion for the local community and its needs.

Melanie’s passion for Central New York and dedication to servant leadership has led her to be deeply embedded in the local philanthropic community, where she has served on more than 15 boards and committees. That includes here at the Community Foundation, where she served as board chair from 2011-2013. Her leadership skills, high level of experience working collaboratively toward cross-sector coalition building, and desire to understand people where they are will make a significant impact on the Community Foundation and the greater community.

Before we talked to any candidates, we talked to you – grassroots and nonprofit leaders, donors, government officials and the Community Foundation’s dedicated staff and board members. The conversations were honest and informed a process that drew great interest from passionate and talented candidates from all over the country.

We learned that if we are truly going to address the great challenges in front of us, we need to take bolder steps in community leadership, especially on the big issues and high-impact projects central to community transformation. We are confident Melanie is the person to lead us through this next stage of our work.

Melanie will officially join the Community Foundation on March 1, 2024. Until then, Thomas Griffith will remain interim president & CEO and we will continue our critical work for and with the people of Central New York.

In the coming months, we will be planning opportunities for you to connect with her, to give her a chance to learn from you and share her ideas. Until then, we invite you to visit today’s announcement to learn more about Melanie.

Thank you for your feedback and honest engagement throughout this process. On behalf of the search committee and the Central New York Community Foundation Board of Directors, we look forward to working with you as we continue to advance the mission of the foundation through this exciting transition.

Best wishes,

Daniel J. Fisher

Chair, Board of Directors

Central New York Community Foundation

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