Meet the members of the NCOA Board of Directors:
James Knickman, PhD, Chair
(Retired) Former Robert Derzon Chair, New York University, Former CEO, New York State Health Foundation
James (Jim) Knickman has spent four decades splitting his time between academe and the philanthropic sector. His work focuses on health policy and he has played many roles both as a researcher and a leader in philanthropy to advance the use of public policy to improve the American health care system. He was a vice president at the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and President of the New York State Health Foundation.
Before retiring in April 2020, Jim was the Derzon Chair in Public and Health Affairs at NYU with joint appointments at the NYU Wagner School and at NYU Langone’s Department of Population Health. He has published over 50 scholarly articles, a popular textbook (Health Care Delivery in the United States) and is the co-editor of 16 other books focused on a range of topics related to health policy. He has a PhD in Public Policy Analysis from the University of Pennsylvania and did his undergraduate work at Fordham University.
Jim’s research and philanthropy roles have included work to advance policies such as Participant Directed Long-Term Care, Public-Private Long-Term Care Insurance, and various reimbursement policies related to paying for long-term care and chronic care services.
In addition to his service at NCOA, he serves on the boards at 2 other non-profit organizations and on a range of advisory committees. In the past, he has served on 6 boards including as Chair of the Robert Wood Johnson Health System in New Jersey.
Sunder Joshi, Secretary & Treasurer
(Retired) Former Chief Administrative Officer & Chief Financial Officer, American Heart Association
Sunder D. Joshi held numerous positions at the American Heart Association before retiring as Chief Administrative Officer and Chief Financial Officer. In this role he was responsible for Finance, Business Technology, Human Resources, Diversity, Support Services, Legal, Internal Audit, and Bequest Administration.
His previous roles included Director of Internal Audit and Chief Operating Officer, Business Operations of the Western States Affiliate.
Prior to joining the American Heart Association, Joshi worked in public accounting in the UK for Thomson McLintock & Co and in the International Audit Division of Continental Illinois Bank in London and Chicago. He has served on committees of several nonprofit organizations, including the Independent Sector’s Ethics and Accountability Committee, the Wise Giving Alliance’s Effectiveness Panel, and the Partnership for Prevention’s Audit Committee.
Joshi holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree from University of Bombay, is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England & Wales and received his CPA certification from the Colorado Institute of Certified Public Accountants.
President, The Center for Effective Philanthropy
Phil Buchanan, president of CEP, is a passionate advocate for the importance of philanthropy and the nonprofit sector and deeply committed to the cause of helping foundations and individual donors to maximize their impact. Hired in 2001 as the organization’s first chief executive, Phil has led the growth of CEP into the leading provider of data and insight on philanthropic effectiveness. CEP has been widely credited with bringing the voices of stakeholders to funders and with contributing to an increased emphasis on key elements of effectiveness.
Phil is author of Giving Done Right: Effective Philanthropy and Making Every Dollar Count, published in the spring of 2019 by PublicAffairs. He is co-author of many CEP research reports, a frequent contributor to The Chronicle of Philanthropy (after serving as a columnist there from 2013 to 2019), a frequent blogger for the CEP Blog, author of op eds that have appeared in publications such as The Financial Times and The Boston Globe, and a frequent commentator on philanthropy in the media. Phil is also co-founder of YouthTruth, an initiative of CEP’s designed to harness student perceptions to help educators and funders accelerate improvements in K–12 schools and classrooms. In 2016, he was named the Nonprofit Times “influencer of the year.” Phil serves on the boards of directors of Philanthropy Massachusetts and the National Council on Aging.
Phil lives in Concord, Massachusetts with his wife and their two daughters.
Adjunct Professor, University of Colorado Leeds School of Business
Heather Dupré has more than 30 years of experience creating and growing the world’s strongest brands. As a founder and former President & CEO of Egg Strategy, Inc., Dupré led an 80-person global marketing consultancy with focus on world-class Fortune 500 clients, including Nestlé, Coke, Kraft, Kellogg, Estée Lauder, J&J, and Google.
In a previous position for Bristol-Myers Squibb, Dupré created and launched the award-winning Viactiv Active Nutrition for women, the first “by women for women” brand that won best new product of the year from Business Week.
She also led all marketing functions for the U.S. division of the Japanese consumer products leader Kao, where she launched the award-winning Bioré skincare product in the U.S., restaged the firm’s flagship Jergen’s to regain market prominence, and acquired and expanded the Curèl brand.
Other award-winning new products of her creation include Lowfat Granola while at Kellogg’s and Ciroc Vodka and Tanqueray 10 while leading Global Innovation at Diageo.
Dupré earned her MBA from Northwestern University Kellogg Graduate School of Management. She teaches adjunct classes at the University of Colorado Leeds Graduate School of Business in Marketing and Innovation.
President & CEO, Greenlee Global, LLC
Kathy Greenlee is an attorney with 25 years of public service experience. She has expertise in aging, long-term care, disability, elder rights, health care, community services, rural aging and LGBT health. In 2009, she was appointed U.S. Assistant Secretary for Aging by President Obama, a position she held for 7 years. During her time in Washington, Kathy created the Administration for Community Living (ACL), an agency that administers a broad range of aging and disability programs. Kathy provided national and international leadership on preventing and responding to elder abuse. She chaired the Elder Justice Coordinating Council, created a federal home for state adult protective services programs, and created the national elder maltreatment data collection system. Kathy also co-chaired the HHS LGBT Issues Coordinating Committee, an endeavor that resulted in comprehensive program and policy improvements for LGBTQ individuals.
In fall 2018, Kathy launched a consulting business, Greenlee Global, LLC, to pursue aging-related projects regionally, nationally, and internationally. In early 2018, the Sunflower Foundation announced a major grant to support Kathy’s continued work in the areas of elder abuse and neglect. In May 2020, Kathy began working with the State of Kansas, serving as the Kansas COVID-19 LTSS Liaison.
Kathy spent 18 years in Kansas state government. She served in numerous high-level positions, such as Secretary of Aging for Governor Kathleen Sebelius, Kansas Long-Term Care Ombudsman, General Counsel for the Kansas Insurance Department, and Assistant Attorney General.
Greenlee has a B.S. in Business Administration and a J.D. in law from the University of Kansas. She is a fifth generation Kansan and grew up in a small town near Wichita. She currently resides in Lenexa, Kansas, a suburb of Kansas City.
President & CEO, Partners in Care Foundation
June Simmons is President and CEO of Partners in Care Foundation. Ms. Simmons is nationally recognized for her leadership in the administration of health care organizations. Since founding Partners in Care in 1997, June has led the organization’s pioneering role in developing and scaling evidence-based care models, leading to innovative and effective interventions for the management of chronic conditions, the challenges of aging, and better-coordinated care to improve health care outcomes.
Recognized for her innovations, insights and management skills, June frequently speaks on these topics at conferences and seminars and has been honored with numerous awards by academic and national professional organizations. In 2018, she was inducted into the California Social Work Hall of Distinction, a program within the California Social Welfare Archives that ensures the advances and lessons of the profession remain available to future practitioners and researchers.
Throughout her distinguished career, she has been instrumental in envisioning, creating, funding, and operating, forward-looking health and social services research, and programs that meet the mutual needs of patient populations, providers, and health care delivery networks. These initiatives are designed to encourage the implementation of cost-effective, patient-friendly integration of care across settings, from primary care and hospital to home and community.
June has been active as one of the co-founders of the national Evidence-Based Leadership Council. She continues to work in co-founding collaborations with other key leaders, most recently the Los Angeles Alliance for Community Health and Aging—a new public health partnership, designed to disseminate evidence-based intervention and education programs to achieve better health results for diverse populations. In fall 2015, she joined the Board of the National Council on Aging (NCOA) and has recently completed terms on the National Advisory Council of the National Institute on Aging (NIA), and the Institute of Medicine (IOM) Committee on Transforming End-of-Life Care.
Somava Saha, MD, MS
Founder and Executive Lead, Well-being and Equity (WE) in the World
Somava Saha, MD, MS (aka Soma) has dedicated her career to improving health, wellbeing and equity through the development of thriving people, organizations and communities. She has worked as a primary care internist and pediatrician in the safety net and a global public health practitioner for over 20 years. While difficult, she has witnessed and demonstrated sustainable transformation in human and community flourishing around the world.
Currently, Soma serves as Founder and Executive Lead of Well-being and Equity in the World (WE in the World), as well as Executive Lead of the Well Being In the Nation (WIN) Network, which work together to advance inter-generational well-being and equity. Over the last five years, as Vice President at the Institute for Healthcare Improvement, Dr. Saha founded and led the 100 Million Healthier Lives (100MLives) initiative, which brought together 1850+ partners in 30+ countries reaching more than 500 million people to improve health, wellbeing and equity. She and her team at WE in the World continue to advance and scale the frameworks, tools, and outcomes from this initiative as a core implementation partner in 100MLives.
Previously, Dr. Saha served as Vice President of Patient Centered Medical Home Development at Cambridge Health Alliance, where she co-led a transformation that improved health outcomes for a safety net population above the national 90th percentile, improved joy and meaning of work for the workforce, and reduced medical expense by 10%. She served as the founding Medical Director of the CHA Revere Family Health Center and the Whidden Hospitalist Service, leading to substantial improvements in access, experience, quality and cost for safety net patients.
In 2012, Dr. Saha was recognized as one of ten inaugural Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Young Leaders for her contributions to improving the health of the nation. She has consulted with leaders from across the world, including Guyana, Sweden, the United Kingdom, Singapore, Australia, Tunisia, Denmark and Brazil. She has appeared on a panel with the Dalai Lama, keynoted conferences around the world, and had her work featured on Sanjay Gupta, the Katie Couric Show, PBS and CNN. In 2016 she was elected as a Leading Causes of Life Global Fellow.
Chief Marketing Officer, Equitable
Connie Weaver is the Chief Marketing Officer of Equitable and a member of the company’s Operating Committee. In this role, Ms. Weaver oversees and aligns marketing, digital, and insights and analytics efforts to advance business objectives and grow the strategic value and positioning of the company through deeper client engagement and an enhanced end-to-end client experience. She is focused on implementing programs to advance the company’s holistic approach to helping clients reach their goals allowing more Americans to face the future with confidence. Since joining the company in 2019, Ms. Weaver has played a key role in the launch and positioning of the Equitable brand in the marketplace.
Prior to joining Equitable, Ms. Weaver served as Senior Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing & Communications Officer at TIAA, where she oversaw the transformation of the company’s marketing strategy,
digital experience and brand. Previously, she was Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer at The Hartford, and served as Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer of AT&T. She has also led award-winning organizations in investor relations and marketing as an executive at Microsoft, McGraw-Hill and MCI.
Ms. Weaver has diverse board and advisory experience, having served on the boards of several corporate and non-profit entities. She currently serves on the boards of Make-A-Wish America, National Council on Aging
and Connecticut Public Media among others.
Ms. Weaver holds a Bachelor of Science with Honors in Textile Science and Marketing from the University of Maryland and has completed the executive financial management program at Stanford University, the executive marketing management program at Columbia University, and the global strategic planning program at IMEDE (Switzerland).
Managing Director and Co-Founder, Palo Alto Venture Partners
Peter Ziebelman has enjoyed teaching entrepreneurship to students, start-up founders, as well as C-level executives at larger profit and non-profit corporations.
Since joining the NCOA board in 2016, Ziebelman has shared his expertise in entrepreneurship and innovation with NCOA’s leadership. NCOA continues to use entrepreneurship as a method to have the greatest impact to benefit the aging community.
Ziebelman started his career as a venture capitalist over 30 years ago. He co-founded Palo Alto Venture Partners in 1996, a specialized venture firm focused on very early stage investments. Ziebelman is a frequent guest speaker to organizations and he was named to AlwaysOn’s Venture Capital 100 – the top 100 VC’s for 2012.
Ziebelman now serves as an independent director to a select number of privately held companies.
Since 2013, Ziebelman has co-taught the popular course, Entrepreneurship & Venture Capital, at Stanford’s Graduate School of Business, where he is an appointed Lecturer in Management. Ziebelman has also advised Fortune 500 companies on how to be more entrepreneurial within the context of a larger organization.
Ziebelman graduated with a master’s degree in Management from Stanford’s Graduate School of Business and Bachelor of Science degree in Combined Sciences with honors and distinction in the major from Yale University.
Ziebelman and his wife, Cindy, live in Palo Alto, California, and have three sons.