NEW YORK—The Open Society Institute U.S. Programs, part of the Soros Foundations Network, today announced two new board members to the OSI U.S. Programs Board of Trustees. They are inner-city children’s advocate Geoffrey Canada and veteran women’s health activist Joan Dunlop.
Canada, who the New York Times called a catcher in the rye for Harlem’s children, has dedicated his entire professional career to making communities safer for poor children and families. President and CEO of Rheedlen Centers for Children and Families, an organization that offers safe and educational activities for children 365 days a year, Canada leads a comprehensive community building initiative effort, the Harlem Children’s Zone, that serves children by rescuing their devastated neighborhoods, one block at a time.
A critically acclaimed author whose books include: Fist Stick Knife Gun: A Personal History of Violence in America and Reaching Up for Manhood, Canada also received the Heinz Award for the Human Condition in recognition of his battle against what he calls the “monsters” preying on the children of the inner-city. He holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree from Bowdoin College and a Master’s Degree in Education from Harvard Graduate School of Education.
Dunlop, who led the efforts to make women’s sexual and reproductive health rights a central tenet of the 1994 UN Conference on Population and Development and the Women’s Conference in Beijing in 1995, is currently developing the new non-profit "A Women's Lens on Global Issues.” The organization works to identify and build constituencies of American women activists committed to international development.
Prior to this position, Dunlop was President of the International Women’s Health Coalition where she grew the three-person office to an agency with a staff of twenty-two with a budget of four million dollars, and a program reaching eight countries in Asia, Africa and Latin America.
The additions of Canada and Dunlop bring to twelve the number of OSI U.S. Programs Board members. They join Morton I. Abramowitz, Leon Botstein, Lani Guinier, Bill D. Moyers, Aryeh Neier, David J. Rothman, Thomas M. Scanlon, Jr., John G. Simon, George Soros, Herbert Sturz, and chairman George Soros.
The Open Society Institute, a private operating and grantmaking foundation, is part of the network of foundations, created and funded by George Soros, active in more than 50 countries around the world.
OSI 's U.S. Programs seek to strengthen democracy in the United States by addressing barriers to opportunity and justice, broadening public discussion about such barriers, and assisting marginalized groups to participate equally in civil society and to make their voices heard. OSI U.S. Programs challenges over-reliance on the market by advocating appropriate government responsibility for human needs and promoting public interest and service values in law, medicine, and the media, by supporting initiatives in a range of areas.
These areas include access to justice for low and moderate income people; judicial independence; ending the death penalty; reducing gun violence and over-reliance on incarceration; drug policy reform; inner-city education and youth programs; fair treatment of immigrants; reproductive health and choice; campaign finance reform; and improved care of the dying.