The William Penn Foundation Wednesday announced it has named Shawn McCaney as Executive Director effective March 1, 2017.
Shawn has served as interim executive director since November 2016 while a national search for this position was conducted with the assistance of Diversified Search.
As executive director, Shawn will oversee the Foundation’s operations, investments, and $112 million annual grantmaking and evaluation budget, which is focused on increasing high-quality educational opportunities for economically disadvantaged children; protecting the Delaware River Watershed; and supporting arts, culture and the development of accessible and vibrant public spaces.
“The board of directors and Haas family are delighted that Shawn will serve as our leader. His depth of experience, insight, enthusiasm, and commitment to the Foundation and its work render him an ideal choice,” said William Penn Foundation Board Chair Janet Haas. “For more than a decade he has led some of the Foundation’s most impactful and innovative work, including our recent historic $100 million grant to support the Rebuilding Community Infrastructure initiative. Shawn has been an integral part of our growth for 13 years, and understands our evolution as an organization. He has an eye to the future and how we must adapt to the changing needs of the community.”
Shawn joined the Foundation in 2003 and most recently served as director of national initiatives and the Foundation’s Creative Communities grant program. In this role, he managed a $35 million per year grantmaking portfolio focused on parks and public space, arts and culture, and arts education.
He developed and led some of the Foundation’s most notable work including the Civic Vision for the Central Delaware, which highlights public access to the waterfront as an organizing principle for redevelopment of the Delaware River Waterfront, and has sparked the creation of a series of new public waterfront parks, trails, and public spaces.
Shawn oversaw the Foundation’s $25 million grant to support the 21st Century Libraries Initiative, transforming five neighborhood libraries across the city to better serve community needs, and the Foundation’s recent, historic $100 million grant to support the Rebuilding Community Infrastructure initiative, which will transform the city’s parks, playgrounds, libraries and recreation centers into new centers of community.
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