Entertainment Industry Foundation Names New President and CEO

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Nicole Sexton

Chris Silbermann, EIF board chair and ICM Partners managing partner, said: “We play a singular role in the world of philanthropy with an unparalleled history of success, and as such, [the new EIF additions] will be powerful advocates and great leaders now and into the future."

Nicole Sexton, most recently chief of staff of New York's Central Park Conservancy, has been named president and CEO of the Entertainment Industry Foundation. Sexton replaces longtime EIF leader Lisa Paulsen, who announced in April that she would be stepping down from her post after 27 years to focus on development and talent relations for the foundation.

Sexton will be relocating to Los Angeles to take the job. 

Also new to EIF is Regina Miller, who joins the organization as a special consultant. The appointments were announced Wednesday by EIF board chair and ICM Partners managing partner Chris Silbermann. 

In her new role, Sexton will be charged with overseeing key initiatives like Hunger Is, XQ and Hollywood Unfiltered, and to continue the development of new enterprises, such as the recent concert for disaster relief, One Voice Somos Live!, and EIF and XQ Institute's EIF Presents: XQ Super School Live, a TV special focused on education.

Sexton will work closely with Sung Poblete, CEO of EIF’s Stand Up to Cancer, and SU2C's council of founders and advisors. Since SU2C launched nine years ago, nearly $500 million has been pledged for support of its cancer research programs.

Miller, said to be "an expert in donor cultivation, development strategy, and detail-oriented execution" according to EIF, has advised celebrities, athletes, non-profits, foundations and corporations on development strategies and philanthropic endeavors.

In a statement, Silbermann praised both Sexton and Miller for the expertise they bring to EIF. “We play a singular role in the world of philanthropy with an unparalleled history of success, and as such, they will be powerful advocates and great leaders now and into the future," he noted. "EIF is the place for industry to turn to when we need to leverage our collective community to build awareness, raise funds and develop programs on the local, national and global level that facilitate positive social change. In conjunction with the wonderful team already in place at EIF, they are the perfect leaders for the next great chapters to be written from EIF’s 75-year history."

Added Sherry Lansing, former EIF chair and a SU2C co-founder: “Raising funds to tackle big problems and engaging celebrities to persuade the public to act — that’s the heart and soul of EIF. Regina and Nicole are in a strong position to take EIF to new heights."

For her part, Sexton said she's "honored" to be joining a diversified philanthropic organization. “We will continue to help address the essential health, educational and social issues of our time by harnessing the collective power of the entertainment community,” she said.

“It is thrilling to help continue the legacy of the Hollywood heavyweights who founded EIF in 1942 by championing a wide variety of worthy causes," said Miller. "Thanks to the commitment of our supporters, individuals and corporations, EIF will continue to champion more than 300 charitable organizations within the greater Los Angeles area and throughout the nation.”

Sexton served the Central Park Conservancy as chief of staff since 2010. During her tenure, she was responsible for development and stewardship of strategic projects as directed by the president and CEO. Prior to joining the Conservancy, Sexton helped to establish the FEED Foundation as its first executive officer and she has remained on the board. As of 2015, the FEED Foundation, in partnership with FEED Projects, has provided 85 million free, nutritious school meals to kids around the globe. Before moving to New York, Sexton was a longtime resident of Washington, D.C., where she was the executive outreach director for DATA and ONE, the grassroots campaign and advocacy organization that focused on poverty and preventable disease.

Sexton is also an author, having published a novel in 2008 titled Party Favors about the secret side of political fundraising. Her résumé also includes stints as chairman and vice chair of the Rita Hayworth Alzheimer’s Committee; consultant to the Clinton Global Initiative; advisor to the Eastern Congo Initiative; Same Sky Ambassador; and membership in Harvard University's Women’s Leadership Board.