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Devin D. Thorpe

Devin Thorpe

Poetry Foundation Appoints Two New Members to Board of Trustees

Press Release – CHICAGO – The Poetry Foundation is pleased to announce the appointment of two new board members, Eugene Y. Lowe, Jr., Assistant to the President of Northwestern University, and Angel Ysaguirre, Executive Director of Illinois Humanities, to the Poetry Foundation Board of Trustees.

“Angel and Gene bring to the Poetry Foundation Board knowledge and experience that is critical to carrying out our mission – a strong history in the cultural life of Chicago and a deep understanding and appreciation for education and social policy,” said Henry Bienen, President of the Poetry Foundation. “We are thrilled to have them join us as we continue to work to raise poetry to an ever more influential place in American culture.”

Eugene Y. Lowe, Jr. joined the senior administration of Northwestern University in 1995 and has served as assistant to the president since 1999. He also holds faculty appointments in the Religious Studies Department in Northwestern’s Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences, and in the School of Education and Social Policy, where he teaches in the master’s program in higher education administration and policy. From 1983-1993, Lowe was dean of students at Princeton University. He received an A.B. magna cum laude in Religion from Princeton University in 1971, and a Master of Divinity (1978) and Ph.D. (1987) from Union Theological Seminary in New York City.

A historian of American religion of the social gospel, Lowe’s writings about religion, race and American culture have appeared in a number of publications. His book, Promise and Dilemma: Perspectives on Racial Diversity and Higher Education (1999) is based on his work sponsored by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

A trustee of Berea College, Lowe chairs its committee on educational policies. He is also a trustee of ITHAKA, a non-profit organization dedicated to sustainable applications of digital technology in higher education, and has served as president of the Board of Episcopal Charities and Community Services of Chicago. Lowe has also sat on the external advisory board of the Stanford University Center of the Comparative Study of Race and Ethnicity and was a consultant-evaluator for the United States Department of Education and the Pew Charitable Trusts.

Angel Ysaguirre has been the executive director of Illinois Humanities since 2014. From 1999 to 2005, he was also the director of programs, creating programs that included The Odyssey Project, Einstein’s Revolutions, and Brown v Board 50 Years Later: Conversations on Race, Integration, and the Law. He was deputy commissioner at the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events from 2012 to 2014, where he managed the City’s public art program, creative industries offices, and arts programming. From 2005 to 2012, he served as director of Global Community Investing at the Boeing Company, overseeing the company’s grant making program in 60 offices throughout the globe. He began his career in Chicago as a program officer at the McCormick Tribune Foundation.

Ysaguirre currently serves as a volunteer on Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s Cultural Advisory Committee and Arts Transition Team, and in the past, has served on the Board of Directors and Executive Committee of the Theater Communications Group. He was co-chair of their 2010 conference. Ysaguirre has also served as the chair of the Board of Directors for Blair Thomas & Co, and the International Contemporary Ensemble.


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