Who we are


Who we are

In 2003, eight visionary and passionate women created The Women’s Fund. Today, our volunteer board of 21 women is dedicated to creating positive social change for local families and communities.

Our Advisory Board has broad philanthropic, community, and professional experience, ensuring strong governance and oversight. Our mission and decisions are guided by written bylaws, a disciplined and transparent grant process, and periodic strategic reviews. We maintain a strong  reserve fund.

Through our rigorous grants allocation process we support a broad platform of carefully selected programs. They target solutions to complex and overlapping social issues impacting women, families and communities.

We are fortunate to have a broader community of women, families and businesses who, through fundraisers, annual appeals and volunteer projects, magnify the impact of our work. 

We are creating change, together.

    George Peabody Award

    2017 Awards Luncheon

    Photos By: Alyse Gause Photography

    2018 Power of the Purse

    Photos By: Alyse Gause Photography




    Advisory Board

    • Ro French, President
      Susan Beckmann, Vice President
      Cara Hutchins, Vice President
      Bobbi Whiting, Treasurer
      Sheridan Maguire, Secretary
      Lisa Parker, Grants Allocation Committee Chair

    • Kennon Anderson
      Gretchen Berg
      Lynn Bryant
      Liz Cartland
      Meg Erickson
      Francie Hill
      Betsy Hopkins
      Joyce McMahon
      Alison McMaster
      Elaine Quinn
      Rebecca Riff
      Susan Robie
      Wendy Roworth
      Jane Stark
      Sarah Wolfgang
      Willa Worsfold

    Grants Allocation Committee

     Grants Allocation Committee

    Grants Allocation Committee

    • Lisa Parker, Chair,
    • Susan Beckmann
      Cathe Chiaramonte
      Emily Gonzalez
      Becky Hallowell
      Leslie Hammond
      Tricia Herring
      Francie Hill
      Susan Howell
      Cara Hutchins
      Rebecca Imperiali

    • Melissa Lorenzo-Hervé
      Anne Mauck
      Beth Payson
      Debbie Powell
      Susan Robie
      Lisa Ann Santin
      Priscilla Schwarzenbach
      Bobbye Lou Sims
      Bobbi Whiting
      Sara Wolfgang
      Susan Robie


    Essex County Community Foundation

    The Women's Fund is a field of interest fund of Essex County Community Foundation (ECCF). ECCF is our fiscal agent and provides our 501(c)(3) tax- exempt status. The Foundation also provides administrative support and oversees the effective management of the financial assets of The Women’s Fund. For more information, visit


    The Women’s Funding Network


    The Women’s Fund of Essex County is a proud member of The Women’s Funding Network (WFN). The WFN was established in 1985 as a global movement to optimize the success of women’s organizations, giving its members access to a forum of shared knowledge, ideas, tools, consultancy, and training. Through the WFN, we are one of more than 160 other women’s organizations that span 30 countries, including public charities, foundations and funds.

    We invite you to get involved.