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ACT for Alexandria Names New President and CEO

Experienced Fundraiser Succeeds John Porter on February 5

New ACT Ceo Heather Peeler (Courtesy photo)

Ms. Heather Peeler has been named President and CEO of ACT for Alexandria, succeeding John Porter, who last fall informed the Board of his decision to pass the leadership torch.

In making the announcement, ACT Board Chair Lauren Stack said, “The ACT Board of Directors unanimously reached this decision following an extensive search process. We are fortunate to have such a strategic thinker and recognized leader in philanthropy stepping up to succeed John Porter as head of our organization. We look forward to working with her as we continue to build on the strong foundation John built during his tenure and to make our city an even kinder place to live, learn, work and play.”

Ms. Peeler, who officially assumes her duties on February 5, said, “The work of an organization like ACT has never been more important in terms of bringing people together to address our community’s most critical needs. I am inspired by the example of John Porter’s leadership, which allowed ACT to grow from an idea into the catalytic organization it is today. I look forward to building on that reputation and to working with donors, civic leaders and community partners to further strengthen ACT’s impact and to ensure that Alexandria is a strong, vibrant community for all.”

Ms. Peeler comes to ACT from Grantmakers for Effective Organizations (, a highly regarded organization dedicated to effective philanthropy and nonprofit success. As Vice President of Member and Partner Engagement, she mobilized a national network of more than 5,000 grantmakers in adopting practices to make the greatest impact on nonprofit performance. She previously served as Chief Strategy Officer at the Corporation for National and Community Service and as Managing Director at Community Wealth Partners.

Throughout her career she has focused on bringing people together to make their organizations and their communities stronger. She regularly writes and speaks about capacity building, community engagement, collaboration, and learning and evaluation. Her own community involvement includes serving as Chair of the Board of Fair Chance, an organization that builds the capacity of grassroots youth-serving organizations, and as a Commissioner on the Washington, D.C. Commission on Out of School Time Grants and Youth Outcomes. Ms. Peeler holds a Bachelor’s degree from Wellesley College in Wellesley, Massachusetts and earned her M.B.A. from The Anderson School at UCLA in Los Angeles, California.

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