Wednesday, October 16, 2013
Bruce S. Trachtenberg, Executive Director of the Communications Network, has announced that he will be stepping down from his position as of December 31, 2013.
"Bruce does everything for the Network," wrote Rebecca Arno and Minna Jung, Chair Emeritus and Chair, respectively, of the Communications Network Board of Directors, in a blog post on October 3. "He finds and disseminates content about the latest hot topics in communications. He calls people, makes them feel like they belong. He cannily negotiates contracts. He politely wrangles guest speaker demands to the ground. He patiently listens to and absorbs the million and one ideas spewing from the Network's Board and the membership. He keeps the books. He makes sure people get paid. If the Board comes up with a left-field idea, like, 'let's do an animated video,' Bruce will find the right person to do that video, for, like, peanuts. And it will all be good. We could go on and on about all of the great things Bruce has done for the Network during his tenure as ED. But here's what we really think made Bruce so great: he cares. He cares about all of the people, and the ideas, that make the Communications Network the great organization it is today."
"I'm grateful for the opportunity I had to be part of an organization whose very passionate and caring members believe in the power of smart communications to improve lives," said Trachtenberg.
Trachtenberg, who was named Executive Director of the Communications Network in May 2006, has served over the course of his career in leadership and senior management positions in the nonprofit sector; held communications positions in the publishing, technology, forest products and banking industries; and worked as a general assignment and sports reporter.
Between 2000 and 2006, Trachtenberg was with the Edna McConnell Clark Foundation, serving during his last year there as a communications consultant, and for five years before that as Director of Communications. Trachtenberg played a key role in helping build awareness of the foundation's transition from a grantmaker that worked across several program areas to one that worked with promising youth organizations, helping them grow stronger and larger so they could assist young people in low-income communities make a successful transition to adulthood.
In 2000, Trachtenberg served as a senior producer for Worth.com, a startup venture between Worth Interactive and Worth magazine. Trachtenberg created and oversaw the online publication's philanthropy channel, which provided news, articles and feature stories designed to help wealthy individuals learn how to give their money and time effectively to worthy causes.
Trachtenberg came to Worth.com from the then DeWitt Wallace-Reader's Digest Fund and Lila Wallace-Reader's Digest Fund (now the Wallace Foundation), where he had served since 1992 as their first Director of Communications. Trachtenberg joined the Funds during the period they grew from small, family foundations to leading national grantmakers that focused on youth, education, arts and culture.
From 1982 to 1992, Trachtenberg worked for the Reader's Digest Association, where he held a variety of communications posts for the publishing and direct mail marketing company. In his last position as Public Relations Director, Trachtenberg served on teams that took the company public after nearly 75 years of operations as a private enterprise and that launched local language editions of Reader's Digest magazine in Russia and Hungary.
In earlier years, Trachtenberg was on the communications staff for IBM, and before that had worked for Louisiana Pacific and First National Bank of Oregon.
He began his career in 1972 as a general assignment and sports reporter for The Oregonian in Portland, Oregon. He holds a Bachelor's degree in History from Portland State University.