News, Press

Women’s Funding Network Grows Board to Accelerate Fight for Gender Justice

Three new members will help mobilize the organization’s intersectional, feminist movement for equity and justice

Ellen Moorhouse, Communications Director, Women’s Funding Network 
(413) 218-2293 /
For Immediate Release

SAN FRANCISCO  — The Women’s Funding Network (WFN) announces the appointments of three new members to its board of directors: Renée Joslyn, Ashlei Spivey, and Rashmi Yadav Marya. The newly-appointed members hail from diverse personal and professional backgrounds and are all national leaders in gender equity and justice advocacy. They will take their seats as part of a 16-person governance body on January 1, 2022.

In addition, the Board of Directors elected a new slate of officers, including: 

  • Melanie R. Brown, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Chair
  • Suzanne B. Peters, Peters Associates, Vice Chair
  • Jill Nowak, Missouri Foundation for Health, Secretary
  • Teresa Younger, Ms. Foundation for Women, Treasurer

“As an organization dedicated to advancing the liberation of marginalized genders, we know that we must accelerate our fight in 2022, and we’re thrilled to grow our leadership coalition with three more exceptional women’s philanthropy leaders,” said Elizabeth Barajas-Román, President & CEO of Women’s Funding Network. “Our global alliance is led by the wisdom of local leaders. Renée, Ashlei, and Rashmi are representative of our members and network, with a shared passion and dedication to our collective mission of leveraging the power of philanthropy to mobilize an intersectional, feminist movement for equity and justice.”

“As incoming Board Chair of the Women’s Funding Network, I’m honored to stand in leadership alongside these powerful women who bring a diverse range of philanthropic expertise, community advocacy, and activism,” said Melanie R. Brown of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. “As we head into a new year of challenges and opportunities, the board looks forward to leveraging their vast expertise, steadfast leadership, and unwavering commitment to our shared vision of justice and equity for all.”

The new board members were nominated by their peers and vetted by the WFN nominations committee. They are:

Renée Joslyn

Renée has more than 15 years of experience designing comprehensive approaches to advancing justice and equity around the world. Her focus areas include racial justice, gender equity, Indigenous communities, and community-led movement building. Renée founded Philanthropy Unbound to advise on philanthropic program design, landscape mapping, and creating collaborative funds. Renée also served as the Director of Girls and Women Integration at the Clinton Foundation’s Clinton Global Initiative.

Ashlei Spivey

Ashlei is a bold leader that actively works to create just communities. In her work as a social entrepreneur, philanthropist, and activist, she champions racial and gender justice to create transformational system change. Creating and championing Black liberation, she founded I Be Black Girl (IBBG), a collective that supports Black women, femmes, and girls to access their full potential through economic and reproduction freedom. Ashlei serves on the ACLU of Nebraska board of directors as Board President & Equity Officer.

Rashmi Yadav Marya

Rashmi is a Fulbright Scholar and board leader and diversity, equity, and inclusion advisor working with organizations that focus on gender equity and education. She has extensive experience working across the private, public, and political sectors and began her career in neuroscience research. Most recently, she served as board chair of Emerge, a national political organization focused on empowering women to serve in political office. 

Click here to read their biographies or to learn more about WFN’s Board of Directors.


With more than 100 women’s funds and foundations spanning six continents, the Women’s Funding Network is the largest global philanthropic alliance dedicated to providing strategies, research, and resources that support the critical agency and influence of women’s foundations and gender justice funders in the movement for equality, justice, and power for all. Visit the Women’s Funding Network website for more information, or connect on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.

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