About

Executive Team

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PRESIDENT & CEO

Jamie Merisotis

Jamie Merisotis is president and CEO of Lumina Foundation, the nation's largest private foundation committed solely to enrolling and graduating more students from college.

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VICE PRESIDENT OF STRATEGIC IMPACT

Courtney Brown, Ph.D.

Courtney Brown, Ph.D, is the Vice President of Strategic Impact at Lumina Foundation, the nation’s largest private foundation focused specifically on increasing Americans’ postsecondary success. In this role she oversees the Foundation’s efforts in the areas of strategic planning, impact, and learning. She also leads Lumina’s international engagement efforts. Brown works to ensure Lumina uses data and research to inform and continuously apply lessons to work across the Foundation and stays focused on the impact of its work on Goal 2025.

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VICE PRESIDENT, SENIOR ADVISOR TO CEO

Samuel Cargile, Ph.D.

Samuel Cargile, Ph.D. joined Lumina Foundation in 2001. He oversees strategy officers and the Foundation's grant making. He also provides leadership for the Foundation's largest initiative, Achieving the Dream: Community Colleges Count.

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CHIEF STRATEGY OFFICER AND SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT

Danette Howard, Ph.D.

Danette Gerald Howard, Ph.D. is Lumina's chief strategy officer and senior vice president. Howard oversees several of Lumina’s key strategies including work in both state and federal policy and the Foundation’s growing national convening function. She also leads the Foundation’s efforts to mobilize and engage employers, metropolitan areas, higher education institutions and other key actors with a stake in postsecondary attainment.

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VICE PRESIDENT OF FINANCE AND INVESTMENTS & CFO

J. David Maas

J. David Maas has been a financial executive for more than 25 years, holding key positions in for-profit and non-profit businesses. Before joining Lumina Foundation in 2000, he served as senior vice president and treasurer of USA Group.

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VICE PRESIDENT OF STRATEGY DEVELOPMENT

Dewayne Matthews, Ph.D.

Dewayne Matthews, Ph.D. is vice president of strategy development of Lumina Foundation. Matthews has served in a variety of higher education leadership roles, including Senior Adviser to the President and Vice President of the Education Commission of the States (ECS), Director of Programs and Services for the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education (WICHE), and Executive Director of the New Mexico Commission on Higher Education.

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CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER, EXECUTIVE VICE PRESIDENT AND GENERAL COUNSEL

Holiday Hart McKiernan

Holiday Hart McKiernan serves as chief operating officer and executive vice president for Lumina Foundation. McKiernan directs the Foundation’s legal affairs and also leads Lumina’s exploration of the Bologna Process and the implications of that reform effort on American higher education.

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VICE PRESIDENT, SENIOR ADVISOR TO THE CEO

Kiko Suarez, Ph.D.

Juan “Kiko” Suarez, Ph.D. likes to be described as a global citizen. He was born in Europe (Spain), and brings a unique blend of global experience in marketing and communications, corporate responsibility, information technology and strategic philanthropy.

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