Foundation Liaison, Office of the Governor, State of Michigan
Karen Aldridge-Eason is the first foundation liaison to a governor’s office in the United States, a position she accepted in 2003 as a loaned executive from the Foundation. Established through a joint agreement between Michigan foundations and the governor’s office, Aldridge-Eason assumed responsibility for the development of the new position, charged with bringing together state policymakers, foundation leaders and elected officials to explore and identify solutions to issues affecting Michigan’s children and their families. Aldridge-Eason joined Mott in 1993 as a program officer for the Flint Area team, becoming program director the following year. A graduate of the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, where she received a bachelor’s degree in education, she also earned a master’s in public administration from Western Michigan University in Kalamazoo. In addition to serving as an administrator for a mission boarding school in Liberia, West Africa, she also held several governmental positions prior to becoming part of Mott’s staff. She served as budget director for the city of Flint and director of the Office of Health and Human Services within the Michigan Department of Management and Budget.