2017 Leadership Council

The Opportunity Nation Leadership Council is a network of influential Americans leading the conversation about how to revitalize the American Dream and raise awareness about the growing opportunity gap in our country. The following are Leadership Council members through 2017.

Leadership Council Chair: Robert Denson – President, Des Moines Area Community College


A. Barry Rand – CEO, AARP

Andrea Levere – President, Corporation for Enterprise Development

Angela Glover Blackwell – Founder and CEO, PolicyLink

Anne Kress – President, Monroe Community College

Anthony Marx – President and CEO, New York Public Library

Arianna Huffington – President and Editor-in-Chief, AOL Huffington Post Media Group

Artur Davis – Attorney; Former Member, U.S. House of Representatives (2003 – 2011)

Bobbi Silten – Senior Vice President, Global Responsibility, Gap Inc.; President, Gap Foundation

Brian Gallagher – President and CEO, United Way Worldwide

Charles Kolb – President, The French-American Foundation

Christopher Graves – Global CEO, Ogilvy Public Relations Worldwide

Dan Carroll – Former Partner, TPG Capital

Dennis Van Roekel – President, National Education Association

Dr. Alicia Munnell – Peter F. Drucker Professor of Management Sciences, Boston College’s Carroll School of Management; Director, Center for Retirement Research at Boston College

Dr. Curtis L. Ivery – Chancellor, Wayne County Community College District

Dr. Diana Natalicio – President, The University of Texas at El Paso

Dr. Eduardo Padrón – President, Miami Dade College

Dr. Eugene J. Cornacchia – President, Saint Peter’s College

Dr. Fareed Zakaria – Editor-At-Large, TIME; Host of CNN’s GPS with Fareed Zakaria

Dr. Harry Williams – President, Delaware State University

Dr. Isabel Sawhill – Senior Fellow in Economic Studies, Brookings Institution; Co-Director, Center on Children and Families and the Budgeting for National Priorities Project, Brookings Institution

Dr. Jill Wakefield – Chancellor, Seattle Community Colleges

Dr. Judith Rodin – President, The Rockefeller Foundation

Dr. Kathy Krendl – President, Otterbein University

Dr. Kenneth Peacock – Chancellor, Appalachian State University

Dr. Mil Duncan – Research Director, AGree

Dr. Paula Johnson – MD, MPH, Executive Director of the Mary Horrigan Connors Center for Women’s Health and Gender Biology; Associate Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School

Dr. Rick Warren – Pastor, Saddleback Church

Dr. Robert Ross – President and CEO, The California Endowment

Dr. Ronald Ferguson – Senior Lecturer in Education and Public Policy, Harvard Graduate School of Education and the Harvard Kennedy School

Dr. Rosabeth Moss Kanter – Arbuckle Professor of Business Administration, Harvard Business School; Author

Dr. Scott Cowen – President, Tulane University

Dr. Willarda V. Edwards – MD, MBA, Managing Partner and Internist at Edwards & Stephens; 110th President, National Medical Association

Dr. Xavier de Souza Briggs – Associate Professor of Sociology and Planning, MIT Department of Urban Studies & Planning; Former Associate Director of the White House Office of Management and Budget, President Barack Obama; Former Senior Policy Official at the US Department of Housing and Urban Development, President Bill Clinton

Fr. Jonathan DeFelice, O.S.B. – President, Saint Anselm College

George Nethercutt – Founder and Chairman of the Nethercutt Foundation; Former Member of U.S. House of Representatives (1995 – 2010)

Howard H. Stevenson – Sarofim-Rock Baker Foundation Professor, Senior Associate Dean, Director of Publishing and Chair of the Harvard Business Publishing Company Board, Harvard Business School

Hubie Jones – Senior Advisor and Social Justice Entrepreneur in Residence, City Year, Inc.

Hugh Price – Senior Fellow in Economic Studies, Brookings Institution; Former John L. Weinberg/Goldman Sachs & Co. Visiting Professor, The Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs; Former President and CEO, National Urban League

Irv Katz – President and CEO, National Human Services Assembly

J. Barry Griswell – Former CEO, Community Foundation of Greater Des Moines; Former Chairman and CEO, Principal Financial Group

Jacob Harold – President and CEO, Guidestar

James Catanzaro – President, Chattanooga State Community College

James Gutierrez – Founder and Former Chairman and CEO, Progreso Financiero

Jim Wallis – President and CEO, Sojourners

Jo Ann Jenkins – Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, AARP Foundation

John Coatsworth – Provost and Professor of International and Public Affairs and History, Columbia University

Jon Schnur – Executive Chairman and Co-Founder, America Achieves

Jonathan Lavine – Co-Managing Partner, Bain Capital & Chief Investment Officer, Bain Capital Credit

Jordin Sparks – Musician, Actress, Philanthropist

Joshua Bekenstein – Managing Director, Bain Capital, LLC

Judy Vredenburgh – President and CEO, Girls Inc.

Kat Graham – Actress on the CW’s The Vampire Diaries, Singer

Kimberly Kelleher – Board of Directors, Say Media; Former President, Say Media

Lisa Nicole Wilkerson – Broadway Actress

Luis Ubiñas – Former President, Ford Foundation

Major General Albert Zapanta (Ret.) – President and CEO, U.S. Mexico Chamber of Commerce

Marguerite W. Kondracke – Senior Advisor, America’s Promise Alliance

Margy Waller – Senior Fellow, Topos Partnership; Former White House Senior Advisor on Working Families, President Bill Clinton

Mark Rodgers – Principal, The Clapham Group; Managing Director, Wedgwood Circle

Mark Wildman – Vice President, Group Publisher of The Parenting Group

Max Stier – President and CEO, Partnership for Public Service

Meredith DeWitt – Principal, Meredith J. DeWitt Consulting

Michael E. Porter – Bishop William Lawrence University Professor, Harvard Business School

Michael J. Gerson – Journalist, Washington Post; Former Chief Speechwriter, Senior Advisor and Member of the White House Iraq Group, President George W. Bush

Michael Lynton – CEO, Sony Entertainment, Chairman; CEO, Sony Pictures Entertainment

Michael Miles – Advisory Director, Berkshire Partners; Former President and COO, Staples, Inc.

Michael R. Eisenson – Co-Founder, Managing Director and CEO, Charlesbank Capital Partners, LLC

Michelle Nunn – Currently running for the U.S. Senate to represent the State of Georgia; Former CEO, Points of Light

Mickey Edwards – Former Member, U.S. House of Representatives (1977 – 1993)

Naila Bolus – President and CEO, Jumpstart

Neera Tanden – President, Center for American Progress

Nick Cannon – Actor, Comedian, Musician, Writer and Executive Producer

Noel Castellanos – CEO, Christian Community Development Association

Patrick McCarthy – President and CEO, The Annie E. Casey Foundation

Paul Grogan – President and CEO, The Boston Foundation

Rick Stengel – Under Secretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs, President Barack Obama; Former Managing Editor, TIME

Robert Atchinson – Co-Founder, Adage Capital Management, L.P.

Robert Reich – Chancellor’s Professor of Public Policy, University of California, Berkeley

Roger Brown – President, Berklee College of Music

Romanita Hairston – Vice President, U.S. Programs, World Vision

Ron Haskins – Co-Director, Brookings Center on Children and Families and Budgeting for National Priorities Project; Former White House Senior Advisor for Welfare Policy, President George W. Bush

Russell Simmons – CEO, RUSH Communications

Salam Al-Marayati – Executive Director, Muslim Public Affairs Council

Stanley Litow – Vice President, Corporate Citizenship & Corporate Affairs; President, IBM International Foundation

Stuart Thorn – President and CEO, Southwire

The Honorable Deval L. Patrick – Governor, Commonwealth of Massachusetts

The Honorable Harris Wofford – Former U.S. Senator, Pennsylvania

The Honorable John Bridgeland – CEO, Civic Enterprises; Former Assistant to the President and Director of White House Domestic Policy Council and USA Freedom Council, President George W. Bush

The Honorable John J. Dilulio, Jr. – Frederic Fox Leadership Professor, University of Pennsylvania; Faculty Director & Co-Chair of the Director’s Advisory Group, Robert A. Fox Leadership Program; Former Director of the White House Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives, President George W. Bush

The Honorable Melody Barnes – CEO, Melody Barnes Solutions, LLC; Former Assistant to the President and Director of White House Domestic Policy Council, President Barack Obama

The Honorable Michael Bloomberg (Co-Chair) – 108th Mayor, New York City

The Honorable Ted Strickland – Former Governor of Ohio

The Honorable Tony Hall – Executive Director, The Alliance to End Hunger; Former U.S. Ambassador, United Nations Agencies for Food and Agriculture; Former U.S. Congressman, Ohio

The Rev. Dr. Serene Jones – President, Union Theological Seminary

The Reverend Luis Cortés, Jr. – President, Esperanza

Tiffany Dufu – Chief Leadership Officer, Levo League; Former President, The White House Project

Wayne Ford – Iowa State Representative, 65th District

will.i.am – Musician/Producer, Entrepreneur, Philanthropist

Woody Hunt – Chairman and CEO, Hunt Companies, Inc.


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