Clea Newman Soderlund named chair of Fauna & Flora International Board

Fauna & Flora International’s (FFI) Board of Directors in the US has unanimously elected Clea Newman Soderlund to serve as their Board chair.

“Fauna & Flora International is a truly remarkable and effective conservation organisation. They engage on critical environmental issues globally, and find opportunities to make a difference in so many people’s lives. It gives me such great pleasure to serve as FFI’s new Board chair,” said Clea.

Long active on the FFI Board – most recently as vice-chair – Clea succeeds Melissa Shackleton Dann who served as chair for almost a decade. This transition was announced during a recent gathering in Washington, DC, celebrating FFI’s 110 years of global biodiversity conservation and a decade of growth in the United States.

Melissa expressed her profound happiness in passing the leadership baton to Clea. At FFI’s anniversary event she said, “I have a deep sense of gratitude, and confidence that FFI will soar in the able hands of my dear friend Clea Newman Soderlund.”

Clea Newman Soderlund (left) with former chair of the FFI Board, Melissa Shackleton Dann. Credit: Nav Dayanand/FFI.
Clea Newman Soderlund (left) with former chair of the FFI Board, Melissa Shackleton Dann. Credit: Nav Dayanand/FFI.

Clea’s commitment to biodiversity conservation runs deep. She is passionate about wildlife and about protecting the natural world in ways that make a positive difference in people’s lives. Making a difference – and sharing with those less fortunate – has long been a focus for her entire family: her father Paul Newman charted a new course in 1982 when he started making salad dressing and giving away 100% of the profit. This salad dressing led to a full Newman’s Own product line, with more than 250 products now enjoyed globally.

In 2012, Newman’s Own Foundation celebrated 30 years of philanthropy and over $380 million given to charity to date. FFI is a proud beneficiary of over $1.25 million in Newman’s Own grants, and our programmes and local partners around the world have flourished with their flexible support.

Clea with José Urteaga and Eugene Rutagarama. Credit: FFI.
Clea with José Urteaga and Eugene Rutagarama celebrating FFI flagships in Nicaragua and Rwanda. Credit: FFI.

Clea is a long-time champion of the power of flexible funding, which helps organisations like FFI remain nimble and innovative. Newman’s Own Foundation has delivered critical support to protect species as diverse as the great apes of Africa and the fruit and nut trees of Central Asia, and has encouraged others to give directly to FFI general operations by providing challenge grants to augment their contributions.

Katie Frohardt, FFI’s Executive Director, said, “Clea has a special way of inspiring others to join her in protecting our natural world. We are so grateful she has taken on the critical role of Board chair and look forward to translating her passion and expertise into a healthier planet for us all.”

Clea’s enlightened approach to philanthropy reflects an expansive career working directly in the not-for-profit world. Clea currently holds a senior position at SeriousFun Children’s Network – a global community of camps and programmes founded by her father to serve children with serious illnesses. Before that, Clea led the development efforts of AIND Giant Steps (providing support to children and adults with disabilities), and of Pegasus Therapeutic Riding, Inc. She serves on the boards of a number of not-for-profits about whose missions she is passionate, and is a distinguished equestrian.

Learn more about FFI and its Board of Directors in the United States.

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