After several months and a comprehensive search that attracted more than 200 candidates, the Trustees of the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation have announced that Christopher J. Daggett will succeed David Grant as the new President and CEO. Chris will spend time with David and the Dodge program team this spring to assure a smooth transition, and he will assume full-time duties as President of the Foundation on June 14, 2010.
Chris has been a respected leader in New Jersey’s nonprofit world for nearly 20 years. He serves on the board of one of our partners in grantmaking, the Schumann Fund for New Jersey. He is also the New Jersey co-chairman of the Regional Plan Association (a Dodge grantee), a leading smart growth advocate with initiatives like America 2050, which strives to meet the infrastructure, economic development and environmental challenges of the nation as we prepare to add about 130 million additional Americans by the year 2050. Additionally, he serves as a New Jersey advisory board co-chair of the Trust for Public Land, which has preserved thousands of acres of open space across the US and has made remarkable contributions to greening urban spaces and revitalizing parks in Newark through its Parks for People program, which Dodge helps fund.
If you live in New Jersey, you probably recognize Chris’s name as the independent candidate for governor in 2009. He was the first independent candidate to raise the threshold amount of money to qualify for public matching funds and to participate in public debates with the major party candidates. He was also endorsed by The Star-Ledger, the state’s leading newspaper.
Previously, he served as Deputy Chief of Staff to the Governor of New Jersey (1982-1983), Regional Administrator of the USEPA (1984-1988), and Commissioner of the NJDEP (1988-1989). In addition, for six years he was a managing director of William E. Simon & Sons, a private investment firm and, since 1996, has operated a brownfields development company, acquiring, remediating and redeveloping environmentally impaired real estate. He will come to the Dodge Foundation from his current position as a Principal with JM Sorge, Inc. (JMS), an environmental consulting and management firm providing assessment, investigation and remediation services to the public and private sectors.
Chris holds an undergraduate degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a Doctorate in Education from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. He lives in Basking Ridge with his wife Bea. They have two grown children, Alexandra and Justine.
We look forward to introducing our grantees and friends to Chris and continuing to work with our partners across the state to foster more creative lives and sustainable communities in New Jersey.