Fellows Network




Kristi Kimball

Charles and Helen Schwab Foundation, Executive Director

Fairfax, California

Kristi Kimball is executive director of the Charles and Helen Schwab Foundation, which focuses on improving the quality of K-12 education in California and nationwide, with emphasis on charter schools, teacher and principal preparation, and parent information and engagement.  The foundation also supports human services organizations that provide direct services throughout the Bay Area to help people climb out of poverty.

Previously, at the Hewlett Foundation Kristi developed a portfolio of grants to exemplary “deeper learning” schools across the country and another portfolio focused on policy advocacy, research, and communications that contributed to the landmark school finance reform in California known as the Local Control Funding Formula.  Earlier, Kristi worked as a consultant to a number of foundations and non-profits, in the US Department of Education, in the Education Policy Research Center at the Urban Institute, and in the Education Office of the US Senate H.E.L.P. Committee.  She holds a bachelor’s degree from Dartmouth College and a master’s degree in public administration from Princeton University.

Kristi has served on a number of non-profit boards including:  Grantmakers for Education, Envision Education, and California Charter Schools Association, and she was a participant and member of the California Collaborative on District Reform for a number of years.

Selected Publications
Kristi Kimball, along with colleague Malka Kopell, published Letting Go, an article in the Spring 2011 issue of the Stanford Social Innovation Review that focuses on how “Foundations often undermine their own efforts by micromanaging how social problems are solved.” The article goes on to “…explore why foundations have developed this way and what grant makers can do to foster high impact strategies.”

Updated January 2020