Doris Duke Charitable Foundation Promotes Maurine Knighton to Role of Chief Program Officer

Tuesday, October 18, 2022

Doris Duke Charitable Foundation Promotes Maurine Knighton to Role of Chief Program Officer

New York, Oct. 18, 2022 - The Doris Duke Charitable Foundation (DDCF) today announced the promotion of Maurine Knighton to chief program officer. In this role, Knighton will oversee DDCF’s five national grantmaking programs: Arts, Environment, Medical Research, Child Well-Being and Building Bridges. 

"Maurine is a visionary, driven and skilled leader,” said Sam Gill, CEO and president of the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation. “In a moment that calls for creativity and dexterity, Maurine's wisdom and experience will help advance DDCF's diverse and vital grantmaking programs."

Since joining DDCF in 2016, Knighton has led development and oversight of grantmaking programs to support artists and organizations in the contemporary dance, theater, jazz and presenting fields. During her tenure, she has overseen many of DDCF’s signature programs, including the Doris Duke Artist Awards alongside a wide array of novel and innovative efforts to make the performing arts more equitable, inclusive and innovative.

“I am grateful to have the opportunity to be more deeply involved in the outstanding work of the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation,” said Knighton. “Our accomplished program directors have developed a diverse portfolio of grants that has enabled the foundation to make powerful strides toward improving the quality of peoples’ lives. I very much look forward to collaborating with the team. I am excited to help advance our collective vision to extending the foundation’s impact.”

Prior to joining the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, Knighton was a senior vice president for grantmaking at the Nathan Cummings Foundation (NCF), where she oversaw shareholder engagement and NCF’s grants spanning the program areas of Constituency Building, Disruptive Ideas, Religious Traditions and Contemplative Practice, Arts and Culture, as well as the Nathan Cummings Fellowship Program. An experienced nonprofit executive and administrator, she also served as senior vice president for program and nonprofit investment at the Upper Manhattan Empowerment Zone Development Corporation and as managing director of the award-winning Penumbra Theater in Minneapolis.

About the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation
The mission of the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation is to improve the quality of people’s lives through grants supporting the performing arts, environmental conservation, child well-being and medical research, and through preservation of the cultural and environmental legacy of Doris Duke’s properties. The foundation’s mission, grantmaking programs, museums and centers operate through several related philanthropies, including the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, the Doris Duke Foundation for Islamic Art and the Duke Farms Foundation. Together, the Doris Duke organizations support the well-being of people and the planet for a more creative, equitable and sustainable future. To learn more, visit

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