Dear Friends of Women's Fund of Rhode Island,
As you may know, Marcia Coné, who led Women's Fund of Rhode Island as CEO for the past 11 years, officially left the Fund earlier this week to pursue other professional and academic pursuits.
During her tenure, Marcia worked to create an organization known for its cutting edge grant making and social change initiatives that positively impact women, girls and families on the local, national, and international levels. Whether it was community engagement, legislative activities, sponsoring political debates or issues roundtables, Marcia made sure that the Fund was in the forefront.
Under Marcia's leadership, the Fund developed innovative, replicable programs to encourage and engage new women leaders from a variety of different backgrounds. These successful programs include the Women's Policy Institute and the Rhode Island Governmental and Municipal Appointments Projects (RI-GAP and RI-MAP).
The Women's Policy Institute helps train women to become leaders in the policy arena and the Appointments projects promote women appointments to governmental boards and commissions. In addition, Marcia was responsible for conducting groundbreaking research on family leave that has influenced public policy conversations throughout the state and the country.
Successful passage of the progressive statewideTemporary Caregivers Insurance program, the first in the nation, and recent passage of municipal levelpregnancy accommodation ordinances in Providence and Central Falls have been recognized nationally, and just last month by President Obama at the White House.
The Board of Directors is deeply grateful to Marcia for her many years of dedicated service. Much has been accomplished, and the Fund is well positioned to continue its forward facing policy advocacy and legislative work affecting gender equality issues. In my role as President of the Board of Directors, I want to acknowledge our thanks and heartfelt appreciation for Marcia's many contributions to the Fund and to the State.
I would also like to assure you that the Fund's mission to achieve "a community, state, and nation that is free of gender bias and where social justice exists for all" will remain our top priority. We believe, and the data indicates, that the economic health and vibrancy of our State will be significantly positively impacted by policies and legislation that promote fairness.
The Fund is indebted to you for your past interest, commitment, and financial investment to our work.
On behalf of the Board, I ask that you continue that support as we continue to advance gender equality in our State.
Tina C. Benik, President
Board of Directors
Women's Fund of Rhode Island