January 29, 2020
KANSAS CITY – The Appointments Project today commended St. Louis County Executive Sam Page for making progress to close the gender leadership gap by appointing women to civic boards and commissions. Jill Nowak was recently appointed to the Metropolitan Zoological Park & Museum District Board (ZMD) through the Appointments Project, an initiative to empower women and strengthen communities by increasing the number of women serving on civic boards and commissions. Nowak is one of 52 women appointed to county boards and commissions since Page took office.
“St. Louis County is taking meaningful strides towards gender equity by making county government more diverse and responsive to the communities it serves,” said Lisa Weingarth, Executive Director of the Women’s Foundation of Greater St. Louis, which promotes the Appointments Project in St. Louis. “Jill Nowak’s appointment is another example of County Executive Sam Page’s commitment to making government more inclusive, diverse, and effective. We look forward to working with County Executive Sam Page and the Appointments Project to put even more women in positions of power where decisions are made.”
Nowak is the Chief Financial and Administrative Officer for Missouri Foundation for Health, and has worked collaboratively with organizations throughout the state and country to develop and implement strategies addressing the social determinants of health. She also manages the socially responsible investment of the Foundation’s portfolio and the implementation of policies which create an equitable, diverse and effective Foundation workforce. Jill has held volunteer and leadership positions with several organizations focused on supporting women and families including the Women’s Foundation of Greater St. Louis and, currently, as a board member for Women’s Funding Network.
“Jill’s appointment is a prime example of why we created the Appointment Project five years ago,” said Wendy Doyle, President & CEO of the Kansas City-based Women’s Foundation, which created the Appointments Project in 2014. “We talked to countless women who were qualified, willing, and ready to serve in leadership roles – but most civic boards and commissions were dominated by men. Now the Appointments Project is helping to change that by empowering more women to serve in leadership roles and make positive change in their communities.”
“I believe that access to cultural institutions and the mind-expanding knowledge they bring is critical to building a more empathetic and inclusive world,” said Nowak. “That access should not be limited by income or neighborhood. The Zoo Museum District ensures that all St. Louisans, our neighbors and our visitors can enjoy several cultural institutions without concern of the cost.”
Established by the Kansas City-based Women’s Foundation in 2014, the Appointments Project® works to empower women and strengthen communities by increasing the gender diversity of civic boards and commissions. Through a landmark study, the Women’s Foundation identified the barriers causing women to be underrepresented on civic boards and commissions, and we established the Appointments Project to increase the number of women serving.