December 10, 2018

Welcoming our new president, Rini Banerjee

Rini Banerjee
Accomplished foundation leader Rini Banerjee brings decades of experience working to advance social justice and a commitment to transform philanthropic practice. © Sarah Tew Photography

The Jessie Smith Noyes Foundation is pleased to announce that Rini Banerjee will join the Foundation as its fourth president and first woman to lead the foundation. Banerjee’s appointment concludes an extensive nationwide search that began last summer. She will assume the position January 1, 2019.

“Rini has the track record, extensive experience, and deep commitment to social justice that we were looking for in our next president,” said Steven Godeke, Chair of the Board. “Her understanding of movement building through a racial and gender lens makes her a powerful voice for change. Rini is the right person at the right time for Noyes as we seek to build the power of people directly affected by injustice.”

Banerjee brings more than twenty years of experience in social justice philanthropy. As the first executive director of the Foundation for a Just Society, she led the organization from its startup phase to its growth into one of the top global funders committed to advancing the rights of women, girls, and LGBTQI people. Throughout her career, she has worked to encourage collaboration, build trust and relationships with movement leaders, and organize the philanthropic community to increase giving for social justice issues. She also brings extensive leadership and programmatic experience from her work at the Overbrook Foundation and the New York Women’s Foundation.

“We are on an exciting journey that is built on the strength of our past and is full of opportunity for the future. I am confident in Rini’s ability to fulfill the family’s legacy and commitment to equity and justice for generations to come,” said Jenifer Getz, family board member.

“I am very excited to join the Jessie Smith Noyes Foundation as its next president,” said Rini. “I look forward to building upon the foundation’s track record of integrating social justice grantmaking and mission-aligned investing strategies in ways that are accountable to those on the frontlines who work toward a creating just, equitable and sustainable world.“

Rini is a trustee of the Mertz Gilmore Foundation and Board member of Funders for Reproductive Equity, and has co-created or served on the boards of the NYC-based Asian Women’s Giving Circle, Philanthropy Advancing Women’s Human Rights, the Groundswell Fund, and the South Asian Youth Action (SAYA!). She was a past Board Chair of Asian Americans/Pacific Islanders in Philanthropy (AAPIP). She is also a Rockwood Leadership Institute National Leading from the Inside Out (LIO) Fellow and RSF Integrated Capital Fellow. She holds a master’s degree in international affairs from Columbia University and a BSc in finance from NYU’s Stern School of Business.

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