A Personal Message from Our Trustees

Dear members of our community,

On behalf of the Trustees of the Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts, I want to share with you the news that Katie Allan Zobel will complete seventeen years of service and ten-year tenure as President and CEO of the Foundation at the end of September 2022 as she plans the next chapter of her impactful career. The Trustees are grateful for Katie’s many contributions to the Foundation and our community, and we send her off with our sincere thanks and best wishes.

Katie is leaving an impressive legacy and a strong organization made possible by her leadership. In these last ten years, she has orchestrated tremendous growth in the Foundation and in its impact on our community. Under Katie’s leadership, the Foundation has established programs that have increased philanthropic giving within our community (ValleyGives), that have nourished the creative sector of our community (ValleyCreates), and that have increased college access for first generation and Pell grant eligible students in our community (Western Mass Completes).  During the pandemic, Katie led the distribution of over $12M to those in our region most in need.  These are but a few examples of impact resulting from the hard work and creativity of Katie and her talented team. 

Katie’s passionate commitment to equity has resulted in changes not only in the Foundation’s internal operations but also its funding decisions and its interactions with our community.  Under Katie’s stewardship, the Foundation’s assets have grown from $103M to $250M and the staff has nearly doubled, making it possible for the Foundation to support our community at a greater scale and depth. 

As a result of Katie’s decision, the Trustees have engaged Lindauer, a leading executive search firm for the nonprofit profession, and is finalizing the formation of the search committee. We look forward to working with Lindauer in finding Katie’s successor. 

While Katie will be a tough act to follow, we are confident that the Foundation is well placed to attract outstanding candidates and a superb next leader for the Foundation and our community.  We look forward to the day when we can introduce you to Katie’s successor.  In the meantime, there will be opportunities to join the Trustees in thanking Katie for her dedication, leadership, and hard work as she remains in charge of the Foundation and continues to serve our community for the next five months. 

Paul, Trustee Chair

If you have any questions regarding the executive transition, please send an email to our team at wmass@communityfoundation.org