Community Foundation Names New President and CEO

The Board of Directors of the Community Foundation of Greater Birmingham is pleased to announce that Christopher Nanni has been named the Foundation’s new President and Chief Executive Officer. Nanni, a veteran leader and passionate community advocate, comes to the Foundation with 25 years of significant philanthropic experience. He was most recently Vice President, Program for the Community Foundation of St. Joseph County, one of the fastest growing community foundations in Indiana with over $142 million in assets.

Chris Nanni

Chris Nanni

“I am delighted that the result of our nationwide search for our next President and CEO brought Chris Nanni, a community foundation veteran and seasoned community advocate, to lead our Community Foundation,” said Robert Holmes, Board Chair of the Community Foundation. “Chris’ passion for philanthropy, his deep knowledge of community foundation work, thoughtful manner and quiet charm make him the ideal person to provide the vision and leadership to inspire philanthropy and support our efforts to build strong, vibrant communities. I am very excited about the Foundation’s future under his leadership.”

As a member of the senior management team at the Community Foundation of St. Joseph County, Nanni was responsible for the programmatic branch of the foundation which distributed grants totaling between $4-5 million annually to the area. Initiatives included: an African American Community Fund, a Senior Housing Initiative, a multi-million dollar early childhood initiative, 60 scholarship programs, nonprofit Executive Leadership Programs and a county-wide effort to raise the quality of nursing home care.

“My family and I are excited to make Birmingham our new home and I feel honored to join such a trusted organization as the Community Foundation,” said Nanni. “The measure of a community is how well it cares for its most vulnerable. Community Foundations are uniquely poised to address community concerns through innovation and a long-term horizon. I look forward to immersing myself in local issues, understanding the needs from the ground up, and working with the nonprofit sector to strengthen the overall community.”

Prior to joining the Community Foundation of St. Joseph County in 2004, Nanni was the Associate Principal of Cristo Rey Jesuit High School in Chicago. He also served as a Lay Missioner in the Dominican Republic and as the Executive Director of La Casa de Amistad, a youth and community center. Nanni holds a Master’s degree in social-service administration from the University of Chicago and a Master’s in cross-cultural theology from the Catholic Theological Union. He earned his bachelor’s degree in theology and computer applications from the University of Notre Dame where he was a walk-on for the men’s basketball team.

Nanni succeeds president and CEO, Kate Nielsen, who announced her retirement earlier this year. He will begin his new duties in February, 2014.