Former head of Mayor’s Fund for LA to replace retiring longtime CEO Stephen C. Meier
Los Angeles, CA (July 25, 2018) — Deidre S. Lind has been named President and Chief Executive Officer of Pfaffinger Foundation, one of the oldest private foundations in Los Angeles, and one of the few to make small grants to individuals. She succeeds Stephen C. Meier, who is retiring after 21 years.
Ms. Lind, previously the president of the Mayor’s Fund for Los Angeles, will oversee a foundation that has made more than $123 million in grants to support individuals and community organizations over its 82-year history. Pfaffinger was established in 1936 to assist needy employees and retirees of the Los Angeles Times and its sister companies in the former Times Mirror Co., which continues as a primary focus alongside support of social service agencies helping economically disadvantaged people achieve self-sufficiency.
“I am thrilled to join the Pfaffinger Foundation, with its long history of helping newspaper people and community organizations,” Ms. Lind said. “What attracted me to this position is the direct impact that Pfaffinger makes with every individual assistance grant and every community grant it makes.”
Ms. Lind comes to Pfaffinger after four years at the Mayor’s Fund, which she founded as a non-profit, non-partisan organization to help the lives of ordinary Angelenos through public/private partnerships. Since 2014 she has helped develop 36 unique programs and raised more than $34 million.
From 2004 to 2013 she worked for Mattel Inc., including stints as director of corporate affairs and executive director of the Mattel Children’s Foundation. She is a member of the boards of directors of Southern California Grantmakers and the Social Impact Fund.
“Deidre Lind brings to Pfaffinger an enviable record of achievement and a solid background in the management of charitable foundations,” said Durham J. Monsma, chair of the Pfaffinger board’s Governance Committee. “She will help Pfaffinger navigate the profound changes affecting the newspaper industry and build on the strong leadership of Steve Meier in facing these challenges.”
Ms. Lind will initially work in conjunction with Mr. Meier, who will continue to chair Pfaffinger’s Board of Directors for a limited period. Mr. Meier served as an executive with Times Mirror for 23 years before the company was bought out by Tribune in 2000. He has overseen the Foundation’s response to the multiple waves of layoffs that have beset the Los Angeles Times and other newspapers since.
Ms. Lind added: “I am committed to build upon the impressive legacy partnership with employees and retirees of the Los Angeles Times and the related newspapers. And I am excited to build on the legacy of Frank Pfaffinger with the Foundation’s Board and staff.”
Mr. Meier, in turn, welcomed Ms. Lind’s arrival. “It has been a great privilege to serve our clients in the newspaper industry, a truly outstanding group of professionals who have faced very difficult times,” he said. “It has been an equal pleasure to work with a committed board and staff over the decades, as well as with our organizational grantees and community partners. These relationships are what have made Pfaffinger so rewarding, and for them I will always be grateful. I heartily welcome Deidre to her new role,” Meier said.
About Pfaffinger Foundation
Frank X. Pfaffinger was a German immigrant who came to the US in 1882 and to Los Angeles in 1887. In a 53-year career with the Los Angeles Times, he served as business manager and, for more than twohelped his fellow employees when they faced financial difficulties. In 1936 he gave substantially all of his estate to create the Pfaffinger Foundation, requesting that it assist “needy employees and former employees . . . of The Times-Mirror Company.” He died in 1940.
In addition to the Times, Pfaffinger assists eligible employees at other former Times Mirror newspapers, among them the Baltimore Sun, Newsday on Long Island, and the Hartford Courant. In 2017 it approved grants to 223 clients totaling $3.2 million. Pfaffinger provides professional case management services; links to community resources; and assistance for such needs as hospital and medical bills, health insurance, household expenses, and other basic needs due to unforeseen financial difficulties.
The Foundation’s limited community grants are focused on Southern California organizations helping economically disadvantaged people achieve self-sufficiency. Over the years more than $28 million has been distributed for this purpose. A newer program, the Family Self Sufficiency Initiative, makes one-time grants to economically disadvantaged people referred by a group of social service agencies.
* * *