The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation is proud to announce the launch of our Racial Justice Advisory Council, which is comprised of leaders from the racial justice community along with senior staff from the Hewlett Foundation. The advisory council is an essential component of Hewlett’s racial justice strategy — helping the foundation identify emergent needs in the field to advance racial justice, connecting Hewlett with racial justice leaders and organizations, informing the racial justice grantmaking of the foundation, and supporting efforts to integrate diversity, equity, inclusion, and justice across all of Hewlett.

Leaders joining the advisory council from outside the foundation are:

  • Kat Calvin, Founder and Executive Director of Spread the Vote + Project ID, which helps Americans obtain the IDs they need for jobs, housing, and life and that also allows them to go to the polls.
  • Masha Chernyak, Senior Vice President of Programs and Brand Strategy at Latino Community Foundation, which is building a movement of grassroots philanthropists, investing boldly in Latino-led organizations, and unleashing the power of Latinos in California.
  • Bulbul Gupta, President and CEO of Pacific Community Ventures, which supports small business owners and their communities in the fight for economic, racial, and gender justice.
  • Carly Hare(Pawnee/Yankton), Portfolio Director at the Colorado Health Foundation, which is working to improve the lives of Coloradans by centering healthy equity and racial justice. Carly served as the national director of CHANGE Philanthropy from 2015-2022.
  • Cecilia Martinez, Chief of Environmental and Climate Justice at Bezos Earth Fund, which aims to harness the best of human ingenuity, adaptability, and collective action to create a future in which everyone can thrive.
  • Michael McAfee, President and CEO at PolicyLink, which is a national research and action institute advancing racial and economic equity by Lifting Up What Works®.
  • Aruna Rao, co-Founder, Former Executive Director, and Board Member at Gender at Work, an international feminist network committed to building cultures of equality and inclusion in organizations and movements.
  • Chera Reid, co-Executive Director at Center for Evaluation Innovation, which partners with philanthropy to provide changemakers the space and resources needed to advance racial justice and create an equitable future.
  • Manny Rin, New Voters Project Director at Student PIRGs, which works with student leaders and professional staff at colleges and universities to make sure students have the skills, opportunities, and training they need to create a better, more sustainable future for all of us.
  • Rashad Robinson, President at Color of Change, which designs campaigns powerful enough to end practices that unfairly hold Black people back, and champion solutions that move us all forward. Until justice is real.
  • Maya Wiley, President and CEO of Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, which is a coalition charged by its diverse membership of more than 230 national organizations to promote and protect the civil and human rights of all persons in the United States.

These individuals will join the following members of Hewlett’s senior staff on the advisory council: Larry Kramer, President; Charmaine Mercer, Chief of Equity and Culture; Suresh Bhat, CFO; Mallika Dutt, Program Director, Gender Equity and Governance; Vidya Krishnamurthy, Chief Communications Officer and Senior Adviser to the President; Marcus McGrew, Director, Grantmaking, Learning, and Operations; Kent McGuire, Program Director, Education; Ali Noorani, Program Director, U.S Democracy; Emiko Ono, Program Director, Performing Arts; Jonathan Pershing, Program Director, Environment; Elizabeth Peters, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary; and Jehan Velji, Director, Effective Philanthropy Group.

The advisory council’s role is not to weigh in on specific grant decisions, but to help deepen Hewlett’s institutional knowledge. As learners in the racial justice space, Hewlett is entering this work with deep humility and understanding that we need to listen and learn from the academics, practitioners, and experts who have spent their lives advancing racial justice. The 23-member advisory council — particularly those who have volunteered to join us on the council for the next four years — will help us do just that. We hope to also serve as a resource to each of the members so that they benefit from participation in the council as much as Hewlett benefits from their expertise and insights. We look forward to sharing news and updates about the work of the advisory council — and Hewlett’s progress on racial justice — along the way.