Dear Friends of the Elmina B. Sewall Foundation,
As president of the Sewall Foundation for the past thirteen years, I have had the privilege of being part of a team of thoughtful board and staff members supporting the great work of organizations across Maine to improve the well-being of people, animals and the environment. It has been deeply fulfilling for me to see my mother’s philanthropic legacy expand and adapt to address Maine’s needs and the challenges of our time.
I am very pleased to announce a decision that marks the next step for the Sewall Foundation. The Board of Directors has elected Carol Wishcamper and Gail Dana-Sacco as our new board chair and vice-chair, respectively. I will remain a board member but am stepping down as president of the Foundation. As per our long-term vision, this change denotes the Foundation’s transition to a fully board-governed organization. The transition reaffirms our commitment to Maine and our ongoing quest for equity and deepened relationships with all whom we are privileged to work.
I think you will agree that the board has selected two remarkably capable, experienced and passionate leaders for our mission and values.
Carol Wishcamper is well known to organizations throughout the state of Maine, as an independent consultant providing organizational development, group facilitation, executive coaching, and skill building to a wide range of Maine non-profits. Currently she also serves as chair of Springboard to Opportunities, whose mission is to promote success in school, work and life to residents of affordable housing using a two-generation approach and piloting an innovative guaranteed basic income initiative. Recently, Carol served as co-chair of the Maine Wabanaki Truth and Reconciliation Commission to bring healing and justice to Wabanaki communities affected by the Indian Child Welfare Act. She has served on a broad range of local, state and regional boards and committees addressing education, community and cultural concerns, and the environment. Carol steps into the role of board chair having served for ten years as a Sewall Foundation director, the past two as its vice-president and chair of the Strategy and Evaluation Committee.
Dr. Gail Dana-Sacco of Wayfinders for Health, provides evaluation and planning consultation to build health equity among diverse populations. She works with broad-based partnerships to conduct research and facilitate multi-stakeholder initiatives that advance the health interests of marginalized communities. In the philanthropic sector, she applies a culturally responsive and transformative evaluation approach that builds on her wide-ranging experience investigating the structural and policy-related drivers of inequitable tribal health outcomes. Gail currently serves as a faculty associate at the Center for American Indian Health at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, where she works with tribal communities to research strategies to prevent violence and build stronger Native Nations.
I am grateful to Carol and Gail for taking on these important roles and, under their leadership, hugely optimistic about the future, both for the Sewall Foundation and Maine.
Margaret Sewall Barbour