Walton Family Foundation promotes Drucker to full-time K-12 program director

by Paul Gatling ([email protected]) 283 views 

The Walton Family Foundation announced Wednesday (Nov. 10) that Romy Drucker has been promoted to director of the foundation’s K-12 Education Program.

Drucker joined the foundation in 2019. She had filled the role on an interim basis since this summer following the departure of Marc Sternberg. Sternberg left the foundation after eight years to launch a new K-12 investment fund.

“We believe that working together to solve the challenges we face as a country is more important than ever,” Jim Walton, K-12 Education Committee chair, said in a statement. “Romy brings experience working with diverse partners and a willingness to try different community-driven approaches that help children and families.”

According to a news release, Drucker has 15 years of experience working on education issues. Before joining WFF, she co-founded and led The 74, a nonprofit news organization focused on education. She held several senior leadership positions in the New York City Department of Education over five years, working on behalf of the city’s 1.1 million students.

“Romy’s deep support for community-driven change and a strong commitment to bringing diverse perspectives together to build solutions for children makes her the right leader for our K-12 Education Program at this critical moment,” Caryl M. Stern, executive director of the Walton Family Foundation, said in a statement. “She brings the kind of hope and pragmatism that our efforts will require in the months and years ahead. Romy is part of a new generation of leaders we are excited to have lead our work.”

Drucker lives in New York City with her husband. She graduated cum laude from Yale College with a B.A. in Literature and Spanish language and earned her MBA. from Harvard Business School.

The Walton Family Foundation was created in 1987 and is led by the family of Walmart Inc. founders Sam and Helen Walton. Annie Proietti, who is one of their granddaughters, is the board chair. The Walton’s youngest son, Jim Walton, is Proietti’s father.

WFF grants totaled more than $525 million in 2019. That money backs organizations working to improve K-12 education, protect rivers, oceans and the communities they support, and better the quality of life in the family’s home region of Northwest Arkansas and the Arkansas-Mississippi Delta. K-12 education initiatives accounted for 39% ($207.4 million) of the foundation’s 2019 grantmaking.

The foundation has about 100 employees and additional offices in Denver, Jersey City, N.J. and Washington, D.C.