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Elizabeth Christopherson

President and CEO,

The Rita Allen Foundation

 President and CEO of the Rita Allen Foundation, a philanthropic organization that invests in transformative ideas in their earliest stages. The Foundation supports early-career biomedical scholars and pioneering basic research, seeds innovative ways of fostering civic engagement, and builds the effectiveness of the philanthropic sector.

 

Elizabeth is guiding the Foundation through a period of significant expansion, including working with partners in science, civic tech, media, and philanthropy to strengthen our democracy and shared civic life. Over recent years the Foundation has expanded investments, research, and coalitions in civic science—strengthening connections between science and diverse communities—with partners including pioneering scientists and civic science leaders, renowned national organizations and emerging startups advancing positive social change, and networks of influential peer funders. Before joining Rita Allen in 2009,

 

Elizabeth was the first female Executive Director of New Jersey’s public broadcasting network (NJN). She has served on many regional and national boards, including the Public Broadcasting Service (PBS), the Science Philanthropy Alliance, Science Communication Lab, Philanthropy for Active Civic Engagement, and Media Impact Funders.

 

Elizabeth is the recipient of five honorary degrees and numerous awards for public service, including the prestigious Women Who Make a Difference Award from the International Women’s Forum (IWF). She has served as a jury member for international media competitions, including NHK’s Japan Prize co-chair.