Fundraising & Field Building Advisory Team Workgroup

Jackie Williams Kaye • Chief Learning & Evaluation Officer, Wellspring Philanthropic Fund

Jackie Williams Kaye (she/her) is the Chief Learning & Evaluation Officer at Wellspring Philanthropy Fund. Wellspring’s grantmaking supports work in the US and globally to advance human rights and social justice. Jackie supports Wellspring staff and grantees in using evaluation & research to inform grant making strategies and to learn from them. She spent the first phase of her career as a researcher and program evaluator in public health, education and other human service areas. In recent years she has helped lead an effort within philanthropy to improve evaluation of advocacy and policy change work. Prior to joining Wellspring in 2010, Jackie spent 10 years integrating evaluation and learning into the grant making work at The Edna McConnell Foundation and then at The Atlantic Philanthropies.

Kantahyanee Murray • Senior Associate Director, Center for Culturally Responsive Engagement at MPHI

Dr. Kantahyanee Murray is the Senior Associate Director in the Center for Culturally Responsive Engagement at MPHI. In this role, she leads strategy development and evaluation utilizing culturally responsive and equity-focused approaches. Kantahyanee is passionate about engaging residents and other community stakeholders in community ownership-oriented participatory approaches and making data more relevant, accessible, and useful to advance equity. Previously, Kantahyanee served as a Senior Research Associate in the Research, Evaluation, Evidence, and Data unit at The Annie E. Casey Foundation. She planned and managed evaluations of collective impact initiatives and led field-building investments to advance equitable evaluation. Kantahyanee also directed ETB while it was held at The Annie E. Casey Foundation and facilitated ETB’s transition to a field-sustained initiative managed by Change Matrix.

Kelsey Simmons • Evaluation and Learning Officer, Ford Foundation

Kelsey Simmons serves as the Evaluation and Learning Officer at the Ford Foundation’s Office of Strategy and Learning. She works closely with program teams in creating monitoring and learning plans, designing external strategic evaluations, and embedding evidence-based learning throughout strategy creation and adaptation. Prior to her time at Ford, she worked at the International Rescue Committee as a Learning Advisor for the Violence Prevention and Response Unit where she supported 30 program teams working in humanitarian protection. Prior to her role at IRC, Kelsey worked as an Evaluation Specialist at EnCompass LLC, where she conducted evaluations for foundations, governments, multi-lateral institutions, and NGOs in social justice, gender, democracy and governance, and global health. Kelsey holds a Master’s in International Development Studies from George Washington University, and a Bachelor’s in International Affairs from the University of Georgia. She served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Zambia from 2010-2012.

Martina Todaro • Research Associate, Research-Evaluation-Learning, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation

Martina joined the Research-Evaluation-Learning unit in October 2018. She works on a variety of projects supporting RWJF’s efforts to build bold and lasting change rooted in the best available evidence, analysis, and science, and increase equity, diversity and inclusion inside and outside the foundation. Martina holds a Master’s of Public Administration with a concentration in data analysis, and has worked in evaluation, both as an internal and external evaluator, prior to joining RWJF.

Meredith Blair Pearlman • Evaluation & Learning Director, The David and Lucile Packard Foundation

Meredith Blair Pearlman serves as the Director of Evaluation and Learning at The David and Lucile Packard Foundation. The Packard Foundation supports efforts aimed at improving the lives of children, families and communities—and restoring and protecting our planet. Meredith partners with foundation staff, grantees, and external consultants to strengthen the Foundation’s monitoring, evaluation and learning capacity. Prior to joining the Foundation in December 2012, Meredith lead the evaluation and learning at Humanity United. Meredith brings experience implementing programs and developing internal and external reporting, monitoring, and evaluation processes to improve organizational learning. Meredith holds a master’s degree in public administration from the University of Washington’s Daniel J. Evans School of Public Affairs.

Subarna Mathes • Senior Strategy and Evaluation Officer, Ford Foundation

Subarna Mathes serves as a Senior Strategy and Evaluation Officer at the Ford Foundation’s Office of Strategy and Learning. She works closely with programs on strategy development and leads on the integration of evaluation and evaluative thinking into the foundation’s work. Prior to joining Ford, Subarna was a learning and impact program officer embedded within the Open Society Foundations’ Fiscal Governance Program. Before that, she had served as a consultant with Innovations for Scaling Impact (iScale), where she facilitated strategic planning and theory of change processes, and designed and conducted advocacy and network evaluations for a variety of nonprofit organizations and philanthropies. Subarna has an MPA in evaluation from the University of Washington, an MA in South Asian studies from the University of Michigan, and a BA in international affairs from the George Washington University.

Previous Workgroup Members

Gina Hijjawi, PhD

Senior Program Officer,
The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation

Olivia Deich

Assistant Director, Center on Research and Evaluation (CORE),
Southern Methodist University

Theresa Chen

Program Design, Research and Evaluation Consultant,
Nicole Clark Consulting, LLC

Meet More Advisory Team Members

Expanding the Bench® (ETB) is part of a collaborative field-building movement and is informed by a diverse, multi-stakeholder team of thought partners from the evaluation ecosystem. This team offers strategic direction, feedback, and recommendations to guide the development and growth of ETB.

With decades of combined experience in their fields, ETB Advisory Team members help us better understand and address the needs of the broader community.

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