Creative Communities


Posted: Tuesday, September 26, 2017
Source: William Penn Foundation

PHILADELPHIA (Sept. 26, 2017) – The William Penn Foundation announced today the appointment of Judilee Reed as the organization’s new program director of Creative Communities. Reed will oversee a $30 million annual grant portfolio, which includes investments in core support for arts and culture organizations, arts education, and expanding access to high quality public spaces and arts and cultural opportunities in neighborhoods throughout the city. Reed brings national expertise to Philadelphia, having spent the last six years as director of the Surdna Foundation’s Thriving Cultures program in New York City.

“Judilee shares the William Penn Foundation’s passion for building and sustaining a vibrant arts and culture sector through strategic investment,” said William Penn Foundation Executive Director Shawn McCaney. “Her depth of knowledge about the sector and national perspective on the arts and its role in creating vital communities will be a valuable addition to our team, especially as we look for ways in which our work and that of our grantees here in Philadelphia can serve as a model for other cities and communities.”

During her time with Surdna, Reed recast the Foundation’s arts program and helped establish the organization as a leader in key national efforts concerning economic development, design, artistic practice, and youth training, with an emphasis on cultural equity and social justice. She also collaborated closely with other foundation partners on community-based efforts across the country addressing arts and culture and their relationship to economic and community development and social investing.

“I am thrilled for the opportunity to work with the fantastic people and organizations of Philadelphia that have led the way with many important ideas in local, regional and national contexts,” said Reed.

Prior to her work at the Surdna Foundation, Reed served first as vice president and then as executive director of Leveraging Investments in Creativity (LINC), a national initiative to improve support systems for working artists in the United States. She has also served as the manager for program development and strategy for New England Foundation for the Arts (NEFA).  Frequently sought out to share her expertise as a speaker, panelist and thought partner, Reed has served on several national consulting, advisory and governance committees related to arts, culture, and funding. Reed is a graduate of the University of New Hampshire and an alumnus of the Harvard Business School Executive Leadership program.


About the William Penn Foundation
The William Penn Foundation, founded in 1945 by Otto and Phoebe Haas, is dedicated to improving the quality of life in the Greater Philadelphia region through efforts that increase educational opportunities for children from low-income families, ensure a sustainable environment, foster creativity that enhances civic life, and advance philanthropy in the Philadelphia region. In partnership with others, the Foundation works to advance opportunity, ensure sustainability, and enable effective solutions. Since inception, the Foundation has made nearly 10,000 grants totaling over $1.6 billion. The Foundation’s assets exceed $2.3 billion as of March 31, 2017.