Board and Advisors
Paul Sagan, Chairman
Paul Sagan is an Executive in Residence (XIR) at General Catalyst Partners, a venture capital firm that makes early stage and growth equity investments.
He was elected chairman of our board effective Jan. 1, 2017, succeeding our founding chairman, Herbert Sandler, who remains a director of ProPublica.
Mr. Sagan is also a director of Akamai Technologies, Inc., a company he joined in October 1998. Mr. Sagan was elected to the Akamai Board of Directors in January 2005, and he became CEO in April 2005 and served as chief executive through 2012. He also served as President of Akamai from May 1999 until September 2010, and again from October 2011 through December 2012.
Previously, Mr. Sagan served as senior advisor to the World Economic Forum from 1997 to 1998, consulting to the Geneva-based organization on information technology for the world’s 1,000 foremost multinational corporations.
In 1995, Mr. Sagan was named president and editor of new media at Time Inc., a division of Time Warner, and worked in that position until 1997. Previously, he served as managing editor of Time Warner’s News on Demand project and was a senior member of the team responsible for the development of the company’s online business activities. He was a founder of Road Runner, the world’s first broadband cable modem service, and Pathfinder, one of the early Web properties that pioneered Internet advertising.
Mr. Sagan joined Time Warner in 1991 as senior vice president of cable programming to design and launch NY 1 News, the cable news network based in New York City. His career began in broadcast television news. He joined WCBS-TV in 1981 as a news writer and was named news director in 1987.
President Obama appointed Mr. Sagan to the President’s National Security Telecommunications Advisory Committee in 2010. He is a three-time Emmy Award winner for broadcast journalism in New York, a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences since 2008, and the 2009 Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year in the technology category. In 1996 he was named a Global Leader for Tomorrow by the World Economic Forum.
Mr. Sagan is also a director of VMware Inc., and previously served as a director of iRobot Corp., as well as Dow Jones & Company, Digitas Inc., EMC Corp., and Maven Networks before they were acquired. He is a Life Trustee of Northwestern University; a graduate of the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern; a member of the MIT Visiting Committee in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science; and a member of the advisory board of the Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics & Public Policy at the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University, where he was a Fellow in 2013. He was a member of the Knight Commission on the Information Needs of Communities in a Democracy.
Herbert Sandler, Founding Chairman
Mr. Sandler and his late wife, Marion, founded Golden West Financial Corporation in 1963. They were Golden West’s chief executive officers and chairmen of the board from 1963 until 2006, when the company was sold to Wachovia Corporation. Under the Sandlers’ leadership, Golden West became the second-largest thrift institution in the United States and was considered to be one of the best managed financial institutions in the country by many industry observers. Fortune magazine ranked Golden West as the nation’s most admired mortgage services company, and on seven separate occasions named Golden West America’s most admired savings institution. Morningstar, a leading provider of investment research, named the Sandlers CEOs of the Year in 2004. Mr. Sandler is currently president of the Sandler Foundation.
Paul Steiger, Executive Chairman
Paul E. Steiger was the founding editor-in-chief, CEO and president of ProPublica from 2008 through 2012. As Executive Chairman beginning Jan. 1, 2013, he remains actively involved in strategic issues, development, representing ProPublica in public venues, and consulting with management on business and editorial issues as needed and on a part-time basis.
Steiger served as the managing editor of the Wall Street Journal from 1991 to 2007. During his tenure, members of the Journal’s newsroom staff were awarded 16 Pulitzer Prizes. In addition, ProPublica reporters received Pulitzer Prizes in May 2010 and 2011.
He is a member of the steering committee of the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press, based in Arlington, Va., which provides free legal assistance to journalists. He is a trustee of the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, based in Miami, that funds efforts to enhance journalism and the functioning of American communities. He is a board member and treasurer of the Global Editors Network, based in Paris. From 1999 to 2007, he was a member of the Pulitzer Prize Board, serving as its chairman in his final year. For six years, from June 2005 to June 2011, Steiger was the chairman of the Committee to Protect Journalists, a New York-based nonprofit that advocates for press freedom around the globe.
Awards include the Columbia Journalism Award, the University of Missouri Honor Medal for Distinguished Service in Journalism, the Goldsmith Career Award for Excellence in Journalism from Harvard University’s Joan Shorenstein Center, the Gerald Loeb Award for lifetime achievement from the John E. Anderson Graduate School of Management at UCLA, the William Allen White National Citation from the University of Kansas's White School of Journalism and Mass Communications, the University of Arizona's John Peter and Anna Catherine Zenger Award, the Dean’s Medal for Distinguished Leadership from Brandeis University, the Fourth Estate Award from the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., the National Press Foundation’s George Beveridge Editor of the Year Award, the Decade of Excellence Award from the World Leadership Forum in London, and the American Society of News Editors Leadership Award.
Steiger worked for 15 years as a reporter, the Washington economics correspondent, and the business editor for the Los Angeles Times, and for 26 years as a reporter and editor for the Wall Street Journal. He received a bachelor’s degree in economics from Yale University in 1964. In 2013 he was awarded an honorary Doctor of Laws degree by Columbia University.
Mark M. Colodny is a managing director of Warburg Pincus.
He joined Warburg Pincus in 2001 and is head of the technology, media and telecommunications team. Mr. Colodny also is a member of the firm’s executive management group. Previously, he served as senior vice president of corporate development at Primedia, where he ran the mergers and acquisitions group.
Mr. Colodny began his career as a journalist at Fortune magazine. He is a director of A Place for Mom, Evidon, Liaison International, MultiView, Slickdeals, and Helix and is also chair of ProPublica’s Business Advisory Council. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. He received an A.B. from Harvard University, an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School and a J.D. from Harvard Law School.
Henry Louis Gates, Jr.
Henry Louis Gates, Jr., is the W. E. B. Du Bois Professor of the Humanities and the Director of the W. E. B. Du Bois Institute for African and African American Research at Harvard University.
Professor Gates is also Editor-in-Chief of the Oxford African American Studies Center, the first comprehensive scholarly online resource in the field of African American Studies and Africana Studies. He is co-editor with K. Anthony Appiah of the encyclopedia Encarta Africana published on CD-ROM by Microsoft (1999), and in book form by Basic Civitas Books under the title Africana: The Encyclopedia of the African and African American Experience (1999). His most recent books are America Behind the Color Line: Dialogues with African Americans (Warner Books, 2004), African American Lives, co-edited with Evelyn Brooks Higginbotham (Oxford, 2004), and The Annotated Uncle Tom's Cabin, edited with Hollis Robbins (W. W. Norton, 2006).
In 2006, Professor Gates wrote and produced the PBS documentary also called "African American Lives," the first documentary series to employ genealogy and science to provide an understanding of African American history. He also wrote and produced the documentaries "Wonders of the African World" (2000) and "America Beyond the Color Line" (2004) for the BBC and PBS, and authored the companion volumes to both series. Professor Gates is currently at work on a sequel to "African American Lives."
Professor Gates is the author of several works of literary criticism, including Figures in Black: Words, Signs and the "Racial" Self (Oxford University Press, 1987); and The Signifying Monkey: A Theory of Afro-American Literary Criticism(Oxford, 1988), winner of the American Book Award in 1989. He authenticated and facilitated the publication, in 2002, of The Bondwoman's Narrative by Hannah Crafts, the only known novel by a female African American slave and possibly the first novel by an African American woman. He is the co-author, with Cornel West, of The Future of the Race (Knopf, 1996), and the author of a memoir, Colored People (Knopf, 1994), that traces his childhood experiences in a small West Virginia town in the 1950s and 1960s.
Professor Gates has edited several influential anthologies, including The Norton Anthology of African American Literature (W. W. Norton, 1996); and the Schomburg Library of Nineteenth Century Black Women Writers (Oxford, 1991). In addition, Professor Gates is editor of Transition magazine, an international review of African, Caribbean, and African American politics. An influential cultural critic, Professor Gates's publications include a 1994 cover story for Time magazine, numerous articles for the New Yorker, and in September 2004, a biweekly guest column in The New York Times.
Professor Gates earned his M.A. and Ph.D. in English literature from Clare College at the University of Cambridge, and his B.A. summa cum laude in English language and literature from Yale University in 1973. Before joining the faculty of Harvard in 1991, he taught at Yale, Cornell, and Duke. His honors and grants include a MacArthur Foundation "genius grant" (1981), the George Polk Award for Social Commentary (1993), Time magazine's "25 Most Influential Americans" list (1997), a National Humanities Medal (1998), election to the American Academy of Arts and Letters (1999), the Jefferson Lecture (2002), and a Visiting Fellowship at the School of Social Science at the Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton (2003-2004). He has received 44 honorary degrees.
Professor Gates served as Chair of the Department of African and African American Studies at Harvard from 1991 to 2006.
Claire Hoffman works as a magazine writer living in Los Angeles, writing for national magazines, covering culture, religion, celebrity, business and whatever else seems interesting. She was formerly a staff reporter for the Los Angeles Times and a freelance reporter for the New York Times.
She has a masters degree in religion from the University of Chicago, and a masters degree in journalism from Columbia University. She serves on the board of her family foundation, the Goldhirsh Foundation, as well as the Columbia Journalism School. Claire is a native Iowan and has been meditating since she was three years old.
Robert C.S. Monks is a serial entrepreneur and real estate developer who has founded, led, and grown 19 businesses in the financial services, real estate, technology, and communication sectors. He is highly regarded for creating strategic partnerships that promote shared ownership and tether profitability to economic and social development in communities across the country. Mr. Monks is a proponent of the belief that active ownership is the key to successful ventures.
In 2011, Mr. Monks became an owner and Chairman of Spinnaker Trust, a Maine based trust company managing over $1 billion in assets. Spinnaker Trust provides personalized and integrated financial services primarily to high net worth families, individuals, and private foundations. Spinnaker Trust's mission is to deliver first class stewardship and wealth enhancement strategies with a global perspective.
From 2001 to 2007, Mr. Monks was Chairman of Institutional Shareholder Services, the world's leading provider of proxy voting and corporate governance services. With more than 1,000 institutional and corporate clients, the company analyzes proxies and produces research and objective vote recommendations and handles electronic voting for more than 28,000 companies across 102 markets worldwide.
Mr. Monks currently serves on the boards of Maine Today Media, T3i, Mediant Communications, Maine Fiber Company, Spinnaker Trust, and the Black Point Corporation. He is also a founder and owner of the Eagle Point Companies, Dirigo Management Company, Monks O'Neil Development, The Signal Group, Maine Workforce Housing, and Headwater Capital Management. He was previously a founder and Director of Atlantic Bank.
Mr. Monks serves and has served on many non-profit boards including: Maine Center for Creativity, University of Southern Maine School of Business, Maine for Obama Steering and Finance Committee, Gulf of Maine Research Institute, Natural Resources Council of Maine, Maine Employers Mutual Insurance Company, Children’s Museum of Maine, Spurwink Foundation, Waynflete School, and the Portland Performing Arts Center.
Ronald L. Olson is a partner in the Los Angeles office of Munger, Tolles & Olson LLP. Mr. Olson has practiced law with the firm since 1968. Mr. Olson also is a director of Berkshire Hathaway, Edison International, City National Corporation, The Washington Post Company and Western Asset Trusts. He serves as a director of several non-profits, including the RAND Corporation (formerly chair), the Mayo Clinic, and the California Institute of Technology. He counsels individual executives and boards of directors in a range of matters, including numerous high profile transaction, corporate governance and litigation matters.
Mr. Olson received his B.S. degree from Drake University in 1963, his J.D. from the University of Michigan in 1966 and a Diploma in Law from Oxford University, England, in 1967, at which time he was the recipient of a Ford Foundation fellowship.
S. Donald Sussman
S. Donald Sussman has worked in hedge fund investing for more than thirty-five years and is the Founder and Chief Investment Officer of the Paloma Fund. Mr. Sussman was named to the Institutional Investor-Alpha Hedge Fund Hall of Fame in 2013. Donald is a member of the Board of Trustees and Executive Committee of Carnegie Hall, and Co-Chair of its Investment Committee. He is an Honorary Trustee of the Ethical Culture Fieldston School and a member of the MIT Sloan School of Management Finance Group Advisory Board. Donald, via his company Maine Values LLC, acquired, owned, and recapitalized the Portland Press Herald from 2012-2015 in a successful effort to save the newspaper. He has received honorary degrees from the Weizmann Institute of Science in Rehovot, Israel and the Maine College of Art. Mr. Sussman attended Columbia College and received a B.S. and an MBA from New York University.
Kat Taylor’s life has been dedicated to serving social justice and environmental health.
Kat is active in a variety of social business, public benefit and philanthropic ventures in the San Francisco Bay Area. Currently, she focuses on beneficial banking services as CEO of One PacificCoast Bank, a CDFI whose mission is to bring beneficial banking to low-income communities in an economically and environmentally sustainable manner. One PacificCoast Bank is the result of a merger between OneCalifornia Bank, which Kat and her husband, Tom Steyer, founded in Oakland, CA, and ShoreBank Pacific, with offices in Oregon and Washington. The bank’s revolutionary ownership design requires that its profits be invested in the communities it serves.
Kat is also a Founding Director of TomKat Ranch Educational Foundation (TKREF) dedicated to sustainable food production through ranching, tours, research, and school lunch and garden programs. TKREF owns the social business LeftCoast GrassFed, which raises cattle in ways good for people and planet. Kat serves and has served on many non-profit boards including Good Samaritan Family Resource Center, Insight Prison Project, KQED, CuriOdyssey, and Yerba Buena Center for the Arts. She matriculated from Harvard College and earned a JD/MBA from Stanford. Kat and Tom have four children and reside in San Francisco.
Journalism Advisory Board
Jill Abramson, former executive editor, The New York Times
David Boardman, dean, Temple University School of Media and Communications
Raymond T. Bonner, writer living in London
Robert A. Caro, historian and biographer of Robert Moses and Lyndon Johnson
Sheila Coronel, director, Stabile Center for Investigative Journalism, Columbia Journalism School
L. Gordon Crovitz, former publisher of The Wall Street Journal, partner, Journalism Online
David Gergen, professor of public service, Harvard’s John F. Kennedy School of Government and director of its Center for Public Leadership
Tom Goldstein, director, Media Studies Program, University of California, Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism
Isaac Lee, president, news, Univision
Shawn McIntosh, public editor, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Priscilla Painton, executive editor, non-fiction, Simon & Schuster
David Shribman, executive editor, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Allan Sloan, senior editor at large, Fortune magazine
Kerry Smith, senior vice president for editorial quality, ABC News
Cynthia A. Tucker, columnist, Universal Press Syndicate
Business Advisory Council
Mark Colodny, Chair, Managing Director, Warburg Pincus LLC
Dror Bar-Ziv, Investor
Ann Blinkhorn, Founder, Blinkhorn LLC
Ted Boutrous, Partner, Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher
Ben Boyd, Global Chair, Corporate Practice, Edelman
David Coulter, Managing Director, Warburg Pincus LLC
Christopher DeLong, Principal, Taconic Capital Advisors LLC
Jeff Drubner, President, Versus Financial LLC
Sean Fieler, General Partner, Equinox Partners
Maria Gotsch, President & CEO, NYC Investment Fund
Michael Hansen, CEO, Cengage Learning
Joanna Stone Herman, Managing Director, DeSilva+Phillips
Bryan Lawrence, Founder, Oakcliff Capital
Lori E. Lesser, Partner, Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP
William Pollak, CEO, Gordian Group
Lawrence Rand, Executive Chairman of Kekst and Company
Davia Temin, President and CEO, Temin & Company
Gregory Waldorf, CEO, Invoice2go
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