POUGHKEEPSIE — Community Foundations of the Hudson Valley (CFHV) has selected returning Hudson Valley resident Laura Washington to serve as the regional charitable organization’s President & Chief Executive Officer, effective February 1, 2024. Washington was selected after a 7-month long, nationwide search led by Kittleman & Associates, an executive search firm dedicated exclusively to recruiting leaders for nonprofit organizations. She most recently served as Chief Communications Officer and Vice President for Strategic Partnerships at the New-York Historical Society. Prior to that, she held a senior leadership role at the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, where she established and led the organization’s inaugural communications function.
CFHV delivers community leadership and strategic philanthropy to inspire and celebrate local charitable giving in the Mid-Hudson Valley region. Partnering with its generous donors, CFHV addresses current and emerging community needs through effective grantmaking to improve the quality of life for all, and by offering technical assistance to help nonprofits operate more effectively.
Charles “Chip” Simon, Chair of the CFHV Board of Trustees, said: “The entire Board of Trustees congratulates Laura and looks forward to her professional leadership, especially in light of our desire to expand CFHV’s community impact throughout the Hudson Valley. We were immediately impressed with her background in strategic planning, communications, and successful grant campaigns. When we considered that she’s also a graduate of Vassar College, we knew she was the perfect match to serve our board, staff, and community partners.”
“I’ve always been inspired by the generosity evident in so many people in our region. That spirit gets passed down from generation to generation, and is needed now more than ever,” said Washington. “I am honored to lead the Community Foundations of the Hudson Valley and I am committed to championing our counties with unwavering enthusiasm as I collaborate with our dedicated Board of Trustees, staff, donors, nonprofits, and philanthropic partners to ensure that ours is a thriving community for everyone.”
A proud native New Yorker, Washington has close ties to the Hudson Valley where her family resided for several decades. She earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in History from Vassar College, a Master of Science in Strategic Communications from Columbia University, and is a graduate of the Council on Foundations’ Career Pathways program. Washington serves locally on the board of Historic Huguenot Street as Chair of the Education and Programming Committee and has volunteered with multiple nonprofit organizations, including Brooklyn Org’s SPARK Prize selection committee, the New York Regional Selection Committee for the Marshall Scholarship, and has been a review panelist for the National Endowment for the Humanities.