As June comes to a close, so does The Atlanta Women’s Foundation’s fiscal year, which means, unfortunately, we also say good-bye to Board members who are terming off. This year is particularly bittersweet as the five women who will be leaving our Board have been true champions for AWF in our fight to remove the barriers that women and girls living in poverty face. All five women have served on the Board for six years, have made incredible contributions during that time and are proof how a nonprofit organization can grow and thrive with strong, effective Board Members.
Libby Johnson Gozansky is not afraid to roll up her sleeves and pitch in. She is as willing to be a hands-on volunteer as focused on strategic planning and you can almost always find her smiling face at AWF events and fundraising for our cause. In 2013, under Libby’s guidance and expertise, the Foundation’s bylaws were reviewed and updated. No easy feat! It was a time consuming but critical task and is a true legacy gift to AWF.
Fran Levine has been the AWF Treasurer for the last two and a half years, stepping up midway through our fiscal year to unexpectedly take on the role when a former Board member stepped down due to a job transfer. She gamely took on this new role, working closely with both the staff and Finance and Investment Committee to help AWF make sound financial and investment decisions. Additionally for the last six years, Fran has hosted the successful affinity group Women in Finance for Sustainability’s Jazzy Soire, which has introduced women from the financial and investment sector to the work of AWF and raised funds for the organization.
One of our most passionate advocates for women and girls, Dr. Maggie Mermin has served as chair of the Grant Committee for 5 years. Under Maggie’s leadership, we have refined and streamlined AWF’s grants management process, which made AWF’s grantmaking model more efficient and effective. This model has improved organizational performance, partnerships, and sustainability for our grantees and is a model that many major funders, such as Kaiser Permanente and United Way are interested in hearing more about and possibly replicating. Maggie also led the revival of the affinity group Women in Medicine, which became Women in Healthcare to include those in the entire healthcare field who are also passionate about supporting women and girls in our community.
A community leader with a wealth of nonprofit experience, Caroline Moise led several successful fundraising efforts for the Foundation. Most recently she served as chair of the 2015 Numbers Too Big To Ignore fundraising luncheon, which raised $550,000. As two-term Co-Chair of the Governance Committee, Caroline lead the committee through an update to the bylaws and helped to continue building a dynamic Board of Directors, including the addition of AWF’s first male Board members.
In addition to her role as Secretary for the last four years, Shirley Powell, helped lead the communications rollout for the Foundation’s first major research publication, developing the key messages and approaches. Thanks to Shirley’s expertise, AWF was able to use this research as a stepping stone to creating a broader, more effective conversation with community, political and governmental leaders about the barriers women and girls living in poverty in metro Atlanta face and opportunities for scaling up programs successfully removing those barriers. She also served on the newly created Public Policy and Community Education Committee (PPCE), tasked with fostering legislative and public action that will support the elimination of generational poverty among women and girls. The PPCE Committee was an outgrowth of AWF’s first major research publication and the work done by Shirley and the original research task force.
Thank you Libby, Fran, Maggie, Caroline and Shirley for all you have done as Board Members and the support you will lend as AWF Alumnae!