CEI Announces Chera Reid as New Co-Executive Director

Center for Evaluation Innovation (CEI) proudly announces that Dr. Chera Reid will serve alongside founder Julia Coffman as Co-Executive Directors of the organization. 

Chera, formerly Director of the Evaluation Roundtable within CEI, is a champion of philanthropic learning and evaluation, particularly in service to racial equity and justice. 

The new co-leadership structure aligns with the organization-wide shift toward using evaluation and learning to increase racial equity within the historically white-led field of philanthropy. 

“I am delighted to lead alongside Chera as Co-Executive Directors of CEI,” said founder Julia Coffman. “When CEI began 12 years ago, I imagined an organization made up of people who exude curiosity, value collaboration, and have an enduring belief in the power of using evaluation and learning to help achieve transformative change. Chera embodies these attributes and more, as well as deep experience and wisdom about the role that learning and evaluation can play in advancing racial equity and justice. This moment marks a radical opportunity for new possibilities in philanthropy and for CEI’s role in supporting it. I am thrilled to meet these challenges in partnership with Chera and the entire CEI team.” 

“I could not be more excited to join Julia in a position of co-leadership at this time of organizational transformation,” said Chera Reid. “CEI’s commitment to a vision of evaluation centered in equity and justice is an exciting opportunity for a profound evolution in the philanthropic sector. Within the difficulties and heartbreak of the past year lies a society-wide acknowledgement that our current systems are not working for the benefit of all people. Through evaluation and strategic learning, we will be able to advise on how to make the deep systemic changes to dismantle the embedded inequities that still govern the power structures within philanthropy. Julia and I hope that CEI will model a values-driven organizational approach that will inspire others in the field to increase accountability to the communities they seek to serve in all of their practices.” 

“The powerhouse partnership between Julia and Chera will be an incredible asset for not just CEI but evaluation, learning, and the field of philanthropy as well,” said Dr. Hanh Cao Yu, Chief Learning Officer at The California Endowment. “Their combined history, expertise, and charisma will help model shared leadership and new methods of self-evaluation and industry learning for sectors that have long struggled to identify productive pathways forward on issues of equity.”

Prior to joining CEI, Chera served as Director of Strategic Learning, Research, and Evaluation at the Kresge Foundation, where she guided one of the nation’s largest private foundations to become an intentional learning organization rooted in values of equity and opportunity. She also co-led foundation-wide efforts to raise consciousness about race and the impact of structural racism as the foundation made a comprehensive commitment to advancing equity. 

Chera earned a bachelor’s degree at the University of Virginia, a master’s degree from the University of Michigan and a Ph.D. from New York University.