David A. Jackson Named New Executive Director
The Board of Directors of the Mary Reynolds Babcock Foundation is pleased to announce that David A. Jackson is stepping into the role of Executive Director at the Foundation beginning in November, 2012.
Jackson is currently CEO of the Center for Working Families, Inc. in Atlanta, Georgia, where he leads the organization’s efforts to help ensure economic success and self-sufficiency for Atlanta’s hard working families and their children. Jackson has been a Fannie Mae Foundation Fellow at the Harvard University Kennedy School of Government, a member of the New York City Leadership Institute, and an Annie E. Casey Children and Family Fellow.
On his approach to working with Babcock grantees, Jackson says he is excited to learn from them and continue the Foundation’s focus on collaboration, “One of the things that excites me most about the Mary Reynolds Babcock Foundation is that it does not shy away from the hard work and the long amount of time it takes to successfully create collaborative partnerships and results.”
Jackson sees his leadership as a way to deepen impact in service to the Foundation’s mission of helping to move people and places out of poverty, acknowledging the unique challenges faced by Southern communities, “We have the highest poverty and income disparity rates in the country. I don’t feel like that story is being fully told or understood. We will continue to focus on action and outcomes that lead to accomplishing our mission,” adding, “At the end of the day, the grantees are our experts on how systems aren’t working for low-wealth people in the South and what change is possible.”
Jackson’s hire marks the end of the 19 year tenure of Gayle Williams as the Foundation’s Executive Director. Williams’s leadership shaped the current strategic direction of the Foundation and crafted values that will endure as part of her legacy. Williams will be retiring but staying involved in philanthropy as a consultant, working on projects of interest. Williams is enthusiastic about the new Director and sees Jackson’s leadership as an opportunity for growth, “David brings continuity with the Babcock Foundation’s enduring values and its respectful, collaborative approach to philanthropy. At the same time, he brings broad experience and fresh perspectives to lead the Foundation into new opportunities for impact with partners.”
All other senior program staff at the Babcock Foundation will be staying in place, ensuring a seamless transition and stability in the Foundation’s grantmaking and approach.
Watch the MRBF blog in coming weeks to hear more from Gayle and David.