Deborah Ellwood, a leader in the field of community foundations with close ties to Maine, has been named the new president and CEO of the Maine Community Foundation.
For the past dozen years, Ellwood has led CFLeads, the country’s network of community foundations, working together to increase their effectiveness and impact. She has transformed a small “coalition of the willing” into the go-to organization for community foundations seeking to strengthen their community leadership muscle, share field innovations, and tackle the key issues of our time.
“I am thrilled to join the Maine Community Foundation as its seventh president and CEO,” Ellwood said. “I am humbled to be part of an organization with such an impressive track record of success and look forward to building on and growing the relationships, partnerships, and collaborations needed to help MaineCF fulfill its mission to bring people and resources together for a strong Maine.”
“Deborah Ellwood is the right person to lead MaineCF with her national expertise and love of Maine,” said Gregg Collins, chair of MaineCF’s board of directors. “This is an exciting time for the community foundation as we emerge from the pandemic and look to the future in partnership with donors and other community leaders.”
With unmatched knowledge of the field, Ellwood also has a track record of improving outcomes at the local level as a board and staff leader at the Rochester Area Community Foundation in Rochester, New York.
In addition, she has a background as a policy researcher and advocate at Children Now in California, the Center for the Study of the States in Albany, New York, and Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh, where she helped advance public policies that improve the lives of children.
A Bowdoin College graduate with family in Maine, Ellwood has a strong connection to the state and a deep appreciation for the many different communities and voices that make up Maine. She will be based in MaineCF’s Ellsworth office and begin at the end of June.
Headquartered in Ellsworth, with additional personnel in Portland, Dover-Foxcroft, Mars Hill, Rockland, and Rockport, MaineCF is Maine’s second-largest foundation with assets of $775 million. Last year the community foundation awarded $58 million in grants and scholarships.