Steve Gunderson

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Steve Gunderson is President and Chief Executive Officer of the Council on Foundations, a Washington, DC-based nonprofit membership association of more than 2,000 grantmaking foundations and corporations.

"Prior to joining the Council, Gunderson served as the Senior Consultant and the Managing Director of the Washington office of The Greystone Group, a Michigan-based strategic management and communications consulting firm. Gunderson’s areas of expertise included strategic planning and communications, with a strong knowledge of public policy. During his years with The Greystone Group, he also served in a management capacity for clients ranging from the Republican Main Street Partnership to The Mary Fisher AIDS Fund. He also created, led the design and implementation of The National Conversation on Youth Development in the 21 st Century sponsored by National 4-H Council.

"The Wisconsin native is mostly noted for his serving 16 years in the U.S. Congress, and three terms in the Wisconsin State Legislature. His professional focus during this time was preparing America’s citizens, and indirectly the organizations supporting them, for the 21st century global economy.

"Yet, he is probably most recognized for his understanding of the emerging workforce challenges facing America. Steve does extensive speaking and consulting on workforce investment issues. He recently served as the leading author in a book “The Jobs Revolution: Changing How America Works.”

"Believing that Congress was never meant to be a life career, Gunderson voluntarily retired from public service in 1996. During his tenure, Gunderson was a recognized leader on agriculture, education, employment policy, health care and human rights issues. Gunderson’s distinguished career also included leadership roles on AIDS policy, modernization of our nation’s employment policy, lifelong learning, community learning centers, and job training policies for a global hi-tech economy. He served as the Co-Chair of the bipartisan Rural Health Care Coalition.

"Gunderson currently serves on the Advisory Board of Partners in Surgery – a philanthropic effort bringing surgery to the rural poor of Guatemala. He has served on the boards of Gallaudet University, the Mary Fisher Family AIDS Network and the Human Rights Campaign. He has also served as President of the Lutheran Church of the Redeemer in McLean, VA.

"He has lectured widely from Harvard University to The Brookings Institution, and he is often interviewed in the media. A graduate from the University of Wisconsin – Madison, Gunderson today lives in Arlington, Virginia, with his partner Jonathan Stevens.

"October 2005" [1]

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  1. Advisory Board, Diversity in Philanthropy, accessed November 11, 2008.
  2. Advisory Council, Global Philanthropy Forum, accessed January 9, 2010.