Board Roles

Board Roles

Public Welfare Foundation

Washington, DC   |   November 18, 2020

Public Welfare Foundation

The Public Welfare Foundation supports efforts to advance justice and opportunity for people in need. These efforts honor the Foundation’s core values of racial equity, economic well-being, and fundamental fairness for all. Since its founding in 1947 by Charles Edward Marsh, the Foundation has distributed more than $570 million in grants to more than 4,800 organizations. With current assets of more than $500 million, Public Welfare Foundation looks for strategic points where its funds can make a significant difference to advance an alternative vision of justice through criminal justice and youth justice reforms that result in transformative change.

The Public Welfare Foundation seeks to catalyze an approach to justice in the United States that is community-led, restorative, and racially just by supporting the creation and implementation of an alternative vision of justice that is rooted in communities. To bolster grantees’ staying power, the Foundation often gives multi-year and general support grants. In its program areas, the Foundation clusters grants under targeted strategies to achieve longer term goals that can be sustained over time.

Currently, the Public Welfare Foundation’s work focuses in the following key jurisdictions:

  • Colorado
  • Michigan
  • Georgia
  • Milwaukee, WI
  • Jackson, MS
  • Oklahoma
  • Louisiana
  • Washington, DC

For more information on the Public Welfare Foundation, please visit its website.


Candice C. Jones joined the Public Welfare Foundation in Washington, DC as its President and CEO in 2017. Previously, she served as Senior Advisor at Chicago CRED, an organization that focuses on gun violence in Chicago, and as Director of the Illinois Department of Juvenile Justice. Earlier work includes time as a Program Officer with the MacArthur Foundation and as a White House Fellow.

Board of Directors

The Public Welfare Foundation’s Board of Directors is comprised of a stellar group of leaders from a diverse set of professional and personal experiences. Aligned in their commitment to the core values of the Foundation, this group brings insight from careers in academia, financial services, law, and more.

Cliff Sloan serves as the Board Chair and Candice Jones serves as an Ex-officio Member of the Board.

The Opportunity

The Public Welfare Foundation is looking to bring on two new Board members in 2021 and is actively seeking interest from leaders who are excited to invest their insight.

Terms, Committees, and Time Commitment

The privilege of Board leadership comes with high expectations of time, engagement, and participation.

  • Trustees are volunteers who can serve up to three consecutive three-year terms for a total of nine years and may be eligible for re-election after being off the Board for at least one year.
  • There are three full Board meetings every year, which generally take place in-person in Washington, DC (although will take place virtually until normal travel resumes). These meetings focus on fiduciary oversight, as well as strategic review and approval for select grants. Board dinners, which take place the night before full-day Board meetings, often include grantee or issue area expert presentations or engagement.
  • Board Members are expected to commit to attendance at all Board meetings, including travel time and approximately four hours of preparation time before meetings.
  • Included in Board responsibilities are Committee work, which generally takes place in regular one-hour conference/video calls with about one hour of preparation in advance.
  • Each Trustee must serve on one or more of the following committees: Audit, Finance, or Governance.
  • Directors are reimbursed for reasonable expenses related to Board service and each receives $2,000 in compensation per Board meeting. Each Director also has the opportunity to request up to $20,000 per year in discretionary grants to qualified organizations. (There is no financial obligation on the part of Board Members.)
  • Conflict of interest and whistleblower policies apply to all Board and staff members. There are explicit disclosure rules regarding any connections to grant seekers or grant recipients of the Foundation, and Directors must recuse themselves from voting on any proposed grants where they have an actual or perceived conflict of interest.
Board Member Profile

Each member of the Public Welfare Foundation’s Board of Directors shares an approach that is collegial, engaged, and committed. While working on complex and serious issues, they value robust dialogue and critical thinking, all while maintaining a sense of humor and collegiality that allows for each person to contribute in a meaningful way. The Board of Directors seek to engage Board Members who can offer the following additional professional and personal qualities, skills, and characteristics:

Proximity to the Public Welfare Foundation’s Mission and Work

  • Deep interest in applying innovative solutions to justice and creating opportunity for people in need, either from personal or professional experiences, with ability to inform the thinking and oversight of the Foundation
  • Experience contributing to public narratives around race and crime
  • Priority on candidates who have been directly impacted by or experienced with the criminal justice system
  • Experience with successful policy change or systems change in the public arena

Diversity of Thought and Experience

  • Willingness to share and offer perspectives that are not currently represented (or under-represented) on the Board of Directors, whether through lived experience, geography, professional background, race/ethnicity, gender identity/sexual orientation, age, or other areas of identity
  • Appreciation for thought-provoking dialogue and exchange about issues related to the intersection of race and community leadership, particularly around criminal justice and youth justice

Leadership and Governance

  • Interest in serving as a resource and thought-partner to the Foundation’s President & CEO, staff, and fellow Board Members through commitment of time and intellect
  • Preparation to contribute to Foundation and Board activities with business or nonprofit leadership acumen
  • Experience with (or willingness to learn) the practice of philanthropy
Selection Process

Koya Leadership Partners, the executive search firm that specializes in mission-driven search, has been exclusively retained for this engagement. To make recommendations, please email [email protected] and to express your interest, please submit a current resume or professional bio to All nominations, inquiries, and discussions will be considered strictly confidential.

About Koya Leadership Partners

Koya Leadership Partners, a part of the Diversified Search Group, is a leading executive search and strategic advising firm dedicated to connecting exceptionally talented people with mission-driven clients. Our founding philosophy—The Right Person in the Right Place Can Change the World—guides our work as we partner with nonprofits & NGOs, institutions of higher education, responsible businesses, and social enterprises in local communities and around the world.

For more information about Koya Leadership Partners, visit


Koya Leadership Partners, the executive search firm that specializes in mission-driven search, has been exclusively retained for this engagement. To make recommendations or to express your interest please email [email protected]. All nominations, inquiries, and discussions will be considered strictly confidential.