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Global Women — Partners in Philanthropy

Colleen S. Willoughby, Director, is a prominent civic leader and the founder of the Washington Women's Foundation, for which she served as president from 1995 to 2008. Colleen has been instrumental in inspiring and leading a network of 30 similar funds across the United States called “Women’s Collective Giving Grantmakers.” She has served on numerous boards and is an Emerita Trustee of Whitman College. She currently serves as Chair of the Advisory Committee at the Evans School of Public Affairs at the University of Washington.  She holds a BA from Whitman College.

Susan G. Heikkala, Deputy Director, is a senior executive with extensive experience in leadership, strategy development and project management.  She worked with Weyerhaeuser for 19 years and from 2006 to 2008 served as Managing Director of Weyerhaeuser’s China Housing Initiative in Shanghai, China.  Heikkala is currently Secretary of the Board of the Washington State China Relations Council.  She has also served as a Senior Advisor to Wokai, a China-focused microfinance organization.  She holds an Executive MBA and Master of Urban Planning degrees from the University of Washington and a BA from Stanford University.

Robin B. Groth, Communications & Education Director, is a communications specialist with local, national and international experience in broadcast journalism, documentary production, media consulting and advocacy. She has worked in project and program management for major networks including ABC, NBC, CBS and CNN as well as traveled to 25 developing countries for the international NGO, World Vision, reporting on the status of children’s healthcare.  Robin’s first trip to China was in1978 when she made a short film, China: A Personal View. She holds an Executive MPA from The Evans School of Public Affairs at the University of Washington, and a BA from Scripps College in Claremont, CA.

Sonja Ling, Program Coordinator, has worked in the Northwest as a policy advocate in renewable energy and is currently a board member of CoolMom, a Seattle-based non-profit that unites moms and families to take local action on climate change.  She received her MSc in Environmental Change and Management from the University of Oxford, where she focused her thesis research on solar power in Qinghai, China.  She has lived and worked in Taiwan and during the past decade she and her family have spent extended periods of time in both Beijing and Kunming, China. She has a BA from the University of Washington.


C. Leigh Anderson, Professor, Evans School of Public Affairs and Director, Marc Lindenberg Center, University of Washington

Mary Kay Gugerty,  Associate Professor of Public Affairs, Evans School of Public Affairs, University of Washington


Yuting Li, Ph.D. Candidate, Dept of Political Science, University of Washington

Ketty Loeb, Ph.D. Candidate, Dept of Political Science, University of Washington Blakemore Freeman Fellow , Fall 2011 (Tsinghua University IUP) and Chester Fritz Fellow, Winter and Spring 2012 (Peking University)


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