Citigroup exec to be first woman, SAIS graduate to lead trustees
Pamela P. Flaherty, president and chief executive
officer of Citigroup Foundation and a trustee of The
Johns Hopkins University since 1997, will take office
July 1 as the 15th chair of the university's board of
Flaherty will be the first woman to chair the university's governing board and the first graduate of its Nitze School of Advanced International Studies to hold the position.
Elected at the board's annual meeting earlier this month after serving for the past year as chair-elect, she will succeed Raymond A. "Chip" Mason, president and CEO of Legg Mason Inc., who has served six years as chair.
William R. Brody, president of the university, said that Flaherty has been a "fabulous" trustee for 10 years and has been particularly impressive in her leadership of the board's Finance Committee, which he described as an immense responsibility. Though she was elected because of her ability and experience, he said, the historical significance of Flaherty's appointment cannot be overlooked.
"At this time — as the university is making a solid commitment to achieving diversity, particularly in leadership positions — it is an added bonus that Pam is a woman," Brody said. "She is a role model and an inspiration for other Hopkins women."
Flaherty said that she is delighted to be given a "great responsibility."
"This is a tremendous honor. I feel blessed by current leadership to be named chairman of the board of trustees," she said. "The university is in excellent shape, and Chip Mason and Bill Brody have been a terrific team. Chip has been generous with his time, his resources and his wisdom. He is a hard act to follow. The university has been blessed with great chairs in recent years: Chip, Mike Bloomberg and Morris Offit. It is a great tradition."
Flaherty, a 1966 graduate of Smith College, earned a master's degree in international relations from SAIS in 1968 and joined Citibank in its International Banking Group. She went on to manage its New York branch banking business and to serve as senior human resources officer. In 1996, she was named to lead Citigroup's global corporate social responsibility function and served as senior vice president of corporate citizenship for the company, which has 325,000 employees in 100 countries.
In January, she was appointed president and CEO of Citigroup Foundation, which last year awarded $92 million in grants to organizations and individuals in 85 countries and territories. In her new role, she has responsibility for Citigroup's Office of Global Volunteerism and Office of Financial Education, in addition to continuing to head the company's efforts in corporate citizenship and global corporate social responsibility. She is a member of Citigroup's management committee.
Flaherty has participated on the boards of a variety of nonprofit organizations, including Local Initiatives Support Corp., ACCION International, Kenyon College, Colonial Williamsburg and the Nature Conservancy's Long Island chapter. She is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.
Flaherty said her primary priority as chair of the Johns Hopkins board is to support President Brody, the deans and the administration. Some issues on which she plans to focus are financial aid, recruitment and retention of top faculty, diversity and research funding. She said that the affordability of higher education is one of the great challenges the university faces and is an issue on which the board will continue to focus. Flaherty said that she views the university as a global institution that attracts students, faculty and researchers from around the world and will make its international reach a competitive strength.
"Hopkins has been smart about expanding globally, building selectively on its strengths and taking advantage of specific opportunities," she said.
Note: Flaherty is currently out of the country, visiting China with other Johns Hopkins officials for events marking the 20th anniversary of the Hopkins- Nanjing Center for Chinese and American Studies. Color photographs of her are available from Dennis O'Shea at firstname.lastname@example.org or 443-287-9960.
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