Independent Sector Elects Make-A-Wish Foundation President Paula Van Ness Treasurer of Its National Board of Directors

Make-A-Wish Foundation of America
Wednesday, 19 November 2003

Independent Sector, a nonprofit coalition based in Washington, D.C., has elected Make-A-Wish Foundation of America President & CEO Paula Van Ness as treasurer of its national Board of Directors.

Comprising more than 700 national organizations, foundations, and corporate philanthropy programs, Independent Sector (IS) is a nonprofit, nonpartisan coalition collectively committed to fostering and promoting private initiative for the public good.

"Paula brings to Independent Sector's board of directors a rich background of experience at major nonprofit organizations," said Diana Aviv, IS President and CEO. "She is an incredibly experienced practitioner whose skills are matched only by her passion and excitement about joining our work."

"I am thrilled to join Independent Sector's governing board as treasurer at this vital time in the nonprofit industry's evolution," said Van Ness, who has served as an IS board member for the past year. "I look forward to joining this team in collaboration as we seek to serve the industry's—and the public's—needs."

Others tapped for service on the IS board of directors, which meets quarterly, included: John Seffrin, CEO of the American Cancer Society, re-elected as chair; Christopher Gates, president of the National Civic League, as secretary; and Gary Yates, president and CEO of the California Wellness Foundation, who replaces outgoing vice chair Art Taylor, president and CEO of the BBB Wise Giving Alliance. New board members elected during the recent session included: Barry Gaberman, senior vice president, The Ford Foundation, and Brian Gallagher, president and CEO, United Way of America.

About Independent Sector

Independent Sector is a nonprofit, nonpartisan coalition of more than 700 national organizations, foundations, and corporate philanthropy programs, collectively representing tens of thousands of charitable groups in every state across the nation. Its mission is to promote, strengthen, and advance the nonprofit and philanthropic community to foster private initiative for the public good. For more information about the Independent Sector, log onto

About the Make-A-Wish Foundation

The Make-A-Wish Foundation grants the wishes of children with life-threatening medical conditions to enrich the human experience with hope, strength, and joy. It is the largest wish-granting charity in the world, with 75 chapters in the United States and its territories and 27 international affiliates on five continents. With the help of generous donors and more than 25,000 volunteers, the Make-A-Wish Foundation has granted more than 110,000 wishes to children around the world since 1980.

For more information, or to contact Make-A-Wish Foundation of America, see their website at:

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