Today, Mother Jones announces five new members to its board of directors. The expansion is the culmination of an in-depth reenvisioning of board service for the nonprofit organization and Magazine of the Year winner, undertaken over several years.
The new members, who joined the board over the past 14 months, include author, activist, and founder of Decolonizing Wealth Project and of Liberated Capital Edgar Villanueva; writer and activist Rinku Sen, the former president and executive director of Race Forward; digital media and communications executive Bích Ngọc Cao; founder and managing partner of The 360 Group Vincent Robinson, a strategic consultant for social sector organizations; and Cardozo School of Law professor and criminal justice expert Ekow N. Yankah.
These new board members signify the nonprofit newsroom’s investment in diversifying its leadership to better serve its readers. “We’re thrilled to welcome these new members. They bring new talents and diverse backgrounds to the organization at a time when fearless, independent reporting is more important than ever,” says Mother Jones Board Chair Phil Straus.
“The new members bring critical expertise and leadership in fields that our reporting focuses on, and they represent the diversity of audiences we serve,” says CEO Monika Bauerlein. “Like Mother Jones readers across the board, they are changemakers, and I look forward to raising hell together.”
The new members join an active, committed group of leaders on the Mother Jones board of directors. Unusual for nonprofit governance, the Mother Jones board of directors also includes two voting representatives elected by the organization’s staff.
A full list of the board can be found here.
Bích Ngọc Cao is a digital media and marketing executive who currently serves as senior adviser of communications to the superintendent of the Los Angeles Unified School District. Previously she was chief operating officer at Define American, the organization founded by Jose Antonio Vargas to “humanize the conversation about immigrants, citizenship, and identity.” She has led special projects at the Los Angeles Times, worked with Bobby Shriver and Bono to launch the ubiquitous (RED) campaign to raise funds for AIDS programs in Africa, and launched MySpace Music. She serves as president of the Board of Library Commissioners for the city of Los Angeles.
Vincent Robinson is the founder and managing partner of The 360 Group, a national executive search firm that focuses on diverse leadership for mission-driven organizations. He also served as executive director of Social Venture Partners Bay Area, served on the board of the Shriver Center on Poverty Law in Chicago, and held positions at Goldman Sachs and Planned Parenthood. He writes about matters of equity and executive management for publications including Chronicle of Philanthropy. Robinson grew up in Erie, Pennsylvania, and is based in San Francisco.
Rinku Sen is a leading figure in the racial justice movement and for many years was the president and executive director of Race Forward and the publisher of Colorlines. She is a writer and sought-after speaker and author of The Accidental American: Immigration and Citizenship in the Age of Globalization and Stir It Up: Lessons in Community Organizing. Sen has also been the vice chair of the Schott Foundation for Public Education, and served on the boards of the Philanthropic Initiative for Racial Equity, Restaurant Opportunities Centers United, Working America, the Women’s March, and Maven.
Edgar Villanueva is author, activist, and founder of Decolonizing Wealth Project and Liberated Capital. He serves as vice president for programs at the Schott Foundation for Public Education, is chair of the board of directors of Native Americans in Philanthropy, and is on the board of the Andrus Family Fund, a national foundation that focuses on vulnerable youth. This year, Edgar has been selected as a 2020 Atlantic Fellow for Racial Equity and a 2020 OZY Angelic Troublemaker. He resides in Brooklyn on Lenape/Munsee land and is an enrolled member of the Lumbee Tribe of North Carolina.
Ekow N. Yankah is a professor at Cardozo School of Law at Yeshiva University. His work focuses on criminal theory and punishment and political theory, particularly questions of political obligation and its interaction with justifications of punishment. He serves on the New York State Legislature’s Public Campaign Finance Board and the board of the Innocence Project, and previously served on the board of the American Constitution Society (NY Chapter). Yankah was also a distinguished visitor of the MacArthur Foundation and co-chair of the New York Democratic Lawyers Council. He has written op-eds and essays for publications including the New York Times, the New Yorker, and Huffington Post, and has appeared as a commentator on MSNBC, BBC, PBS, and NPR.