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Increasingly, women are rising as leaders in philanthropy. They’re creating their own wealth, establishing private foundations, and collaborating with their philanthropic peers. In this podcast, we hear from two extraordinary women who are transforming the sector through research and convening power. Together, Jacki Zehner, Chief Engagement Officer of Women Moving Millions and President of The Jacqueline and Gregory Zehner Foundation, and Dr. Debra Mesch, Director of the Women’s Philanthropy Institute discuss gender differences in giving and their significance as more women take the helm affecting social change.

About Jacki Zehner:

Jacki Zehner is an impassioned philanthropic leader committed to women’s advancement and philanthropic movement building. She became a community member of Women Moving Millions (WMM) in 2009 and has since become WMM’s Chief Engagement Officer. In addition to her role with WMM, she is President of the Jacquelyn and Gregory Zehner Foundation, a Board Member of The Sundance Institute and an advisory board member to many organizations including Impact Partners, The Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media, The Shriver Report, The Women’s Philanthropy Institute, Catalytic Women, and Gamechangers, the first ever film fund for female directors. Prior to her full-time engagement in the philanthropic arena, she was a Partner and Managing Director at Goldman Sachs.

Throughout her career, Jacki has received numerous awards in recognition of her philanthropic work and leadership. She was most recently named to Inside Philanthropy’s 50 Most Powerful Women in U.S. Philanthropy and The Global Diversity List published by The Economist. She is a member of many networks including The International Women’s Forum, The Red Cross Tiffany Circle, and The United Way of Salt Lake’s Women’s Philanthropic Network. She is also a frequent media commentator, blogger, consultant, and speaker on women’s success in the workplace, women and wealth, investing, and high-impact philanthropy.

About Debra Mesch:

Debra Mesch is Director of the Women’s Philanthropy Institute (WPI) at the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy where she holds the Eileen Lamb O’Gara Endowed Chair in Women’s Philanthropy at the Lilly Family School. Dr. Mesch’s primary responsibility for the Women’s Philanthropy Institute is to guide the research agenda on the role of gender in philanthropy. During her tenure as Director of the WPI, she and her colleagues have written several reports for the Women Give series examining the effects of age, marital status, and income of gender differences in the likelihood and amount of giving to charity.

Dr. Mesch received both her M.B.A. and Ph.D. in organizational behavior/human resource management from Indiana University Kelley School of Business.


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For more than two decades, we’ve worked with individuals, families, boards and professional advisors to preserve legacies and make giving easier. Today we are proud to support more than 2,000 unique foundations and have facilitated over $10 billion in charitable aid. With a 98% retention rate, we are honored to have earned the trust and loyalty of our clients.

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