Vanessa Tucker
Vanessa Tucker

MENLO PARK, Calif. – Vanessa Tucker will be joining the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation as a program officer with the foundation’s Madison Initiative, which focuses on U.S. democracy. Program Director Daniel Stid announced Vanessa’s appointment in an email to the foundation’s grantees and partners:

I am delighted to share the news that Vanessa Tucker will join the Hewlett Foundation on March 2 as program officer in the Madison Initiative. She replaces Kelly Born, who has completed her term at Hewlett. Vanessa will be leading the initiative’s grant making to improve campaigns and elections and combat digital disinformation.

She brings to our team extensive experience in nonprofit strategic planning and democracy research. And while our team focuses on U.S. democracy, Vanessa brings a valuable global perspective. She comes to Hewlett from Freedom House, a Madison Initiative grantee, where she has served as Vice President for Research & Analysis since 2012. In that role, Vanessa has been integral to the development of the organization’s flagship report, “Freedom in the World,” its “Freedom on the Net” index, and its other democracy research. Her work has included exploring distinct threats to democracy posed by disinformation and called for close collaboration with a network of ideologically diverse organizations and experts. She previously worked at Harvard University’s Kennedy School as a program manager at the Belfer Center and, before that, the Women and Public Policy Program, conducting research, fundraising and managing grants.

Vanessa’s family roots are in Oklahoma, where she is a citizen of the Cherokee Nation, and she grew up in Texas and the United Arab Emirates. She looks forward to bringing this lived experience to the politically fragmented and often challenging landscape of our work.  She earned her bachelor’s degree in international development at McGill University and holds a master’s degree in international relations from Yale University.

I’m excited to welcome her to the foundation and the important work that we all do together.