Alfred Ironside

Vice President, Global Communications at Ford Foundation

Alfred Ironside

Alfred Ironside

Vice President, Global Communications at Ford Foundation

Biography

Alfred Ironside is vice president for global communications at Ford, where he oversees communications, strategic partnerships, government relations, and public affairs. As part of the foundation’s executive leadership team, Alfred works on strategic planning and global brand management and partners with program teams to advance the foundation’s grant-making strategies and priorities.

Prior to his appointment, Alfred served for eight years as director of communications at Ford, where he guided a sophisticated strategic communications unit working in support of the foundation’s diverse programs in the US and in 10 regions around the world. He joined the foundation from the United Nations, where he served as spokesperson for countries in crisis and then as chief of media relations for UNICEF. Over nearly seven years, Alfred traveled from East Timor to Ethiopia, North Korea to Liberia, acting as spokesperson on breaking news and sensitive issues affecting children and women. Prior to joining the UN, he was a member of the editorial team that launched the English edition of Ha’aretz, Israel’s leading newspaper, in conjunction with the International Herald Tribune in 1998.

A native of Philadelphia, Alfred began his career as a news reporter at radio stations in that city and in Indianapolis. In the late 1980s he spent three years in the US Foreign Service as a press officer stationed in East Berlin, where he won commendation for his work during the Berlin Wall crisis. In the early 1990s he helped launch and served as managing director for the first Western advertising agency in Bulgaria, and in the mid-1990s he spent four years as a disaster spokesperson for the Red Cross.

Alfred holds a master’s degree in media administration from the Newhouse School and the Graduate School of Business at Syracuse University. He earned bachelor’s degrees in both political science and journalism from Butler University in Indianapolis.

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President at Ford Foundation

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Chief Investment Officer & Vice President at Ford Foundation

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Vice President, Secretary & General Counsel at Ford Foundation

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Head of Real Estate at Ford Foundation

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Director, Public Investments at Ford Foundation

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Director, International Operations Liaison at Ford Foundation

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Director, Southern Africa at Ford Foundation

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Director, Creativity & Free Expression at Ford Foundation

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President at Surdna Foundation, Inc.

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Director, Public Engagement & Outreach at Ford Foundation

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Alfred Ironside
Vice President, Global Communications at Ford Foundation
Career History
Vice President, Global Communications
2014 - Current

The Ford Foundation supports visionary leaders and organizations on the frontlines of social change worldwide. We believe all people should have the opportunity to reach their full potential, contribute to society, and have voice in the decisions that affect them. We believe the best way to achieve these goals is to encourage initiatives by those living and working closest to where problems are located; to promote collaboration among the nonprofit, government and business sectors; and to ensure participation by men and women from diverse communities and all levels of society. In our experience, such activities help build common understanding, enhance excellence, enable people to improve their lives and reinforce their commitment to society. We work mainly by making grants or loans that build knowledge and strengthen organizations and networks. Since our financial resources are modest compared with societal needs, we focus on key problem areas and program strategies. Created with gifts and bequests by Edsel and Henry Ford, the foundation is an independent, nonprofit, nongovernmental organization, with its own board, and is entirely separate from the Ford Motor Company. The trustees of the foundation set policy and delegate authority to the president and senior staff for the foundation’s grant making and operations. Program officers in the United States, Africa, the Middle East, Asia and Latin America explore opportunities to pursue the foundation’s goals, formulate strategies and recommend proposals for funding.

Other Affiliations

Alfred Ironside is affiliated with Ford Foundation

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