Jennie Lehua Watson oversees communications to help the Evelyn and Walter Haas, Jr. Fund achieve its philanthropic goals. She also works on special initiatives that enrich the Bay Area community and that have particular significance for the Fund’s founders and trustees. In special initiatives, Jennie is honored to work with a range of Bay Area institutions and their leaders. A common theme in these initiatives is supporting grantees and partners to expand access to important cultural and civic assets in the community, from Crissy Field and the Presidio to the San Francisco Symphony. Jennie also works with the Chronicle Season of Sharing Fund, which provides critical assistance to individuals and families in need.

In addition to these responsibilities, Jennie works to ensure that the Fund’s communications efforts are advancing its broader mission and priorities. Jennie joined the Fund in 2000 as its first director of communications. She has worked at the California Academy of Sciences, the Oakland Museum, and the Arts Museum Association of America. Immediately before joining the Fund, she was director of communications for Project Open Hand, a Bay Area charity that began providing meals to people with AIDS and now serves seniors and critically ill residents. Jennie holds a master’s and a bachelor’s degree in English, both from the University of Hawaii.


Making Big Bets for Big Results

Posted on June 16, 2016 by Chris Addy, Denis Chicola, Jennie Lehua Watson, Matt Foreman

Bridgespan research reveals that 80% of the biggest donors aim for dramatic social change with their giving, yet only 20% of the biggest gifts (for research purposes, identified at $10M or above) over the past decade plus have gone to such causes. The Bridgespan Group identified a number of barriers and stories of how some donors were getting beyond them… Read More