Seattle Foundation Blog

Thank you for 3 great years, Kirstin Sandaas!

Seattle Foundation sends warm retirement wishes to our Chief Financial Operating Officer.

March 31, 2021

It is with deep appreciation, that we wish Kirstin Sandaas, our Chief Financial Operating Officer (CFOO) since 2017, a wonderful retirement. After three impactful years with Seattle Foundation, last November Kirstin announced she would retire at the end of March. Her plans include enjoying retired life with her husband Rick, as well as spending time with her family.

“I’ve done some of the most important and impactful work of my career over the last three years. This has been an incredible learning journey, and I am exceptionally proud of the progress Seattle Foundation’s made toward centering racial equity in all the work we do. I am humbled to have been able to make a significant contribution to that work. I look forward to seeing the amazing accomplishments ahead and I will be among the many cheering you on!” Kirstin reflected on her time with Seattle Foundation.

Over the past three years, Kirstin was the key proponent in including equity considerations as part of the Foundation’s investment approach in order to increase the diversity of Seattle Foundation’s active investment managers by pursuing more women and people of color for those roles. This work was critical not only for Seattle Foundation, but for the community foundation field more broadly. Kirstin also led the Foundation’s office operations and people policies for remote work during the pandemic, and was a key Seattle Foundation partner in standing up the Evergreen Impact Housing Fund.

Seattle Foundation leaders and Trustees reflected on Kirstin’s time with the organization and her incredible impact:

“Kirstin’s leadership and important contributions to our impact, adding racial equity initiatives to our Finance and Operations group have been instrumental to Seattle Foundation living our mission,” said Tony Mestres, President & CEO.

“I appreciate the partnership with Kirstin in managing the investment portfolio side of Seattle Foundation. She and her team provided excellent support to the Investment Committee. More broadly, she brought a systems and process focus to the operating side of the Foundation. I wish her well in the next phase of her life and look forward to continuing the friendship and collaboration,” reflected Steve Hill, Chair of Seattle Foundation’s Investment Committee.

“Kirstin’s commitment to our vision and values has allowed Seattle Foundation to embark on new, innovative partnerships and to take on more important work than ever before, resulting in even greater impact. Our COVID-19 Response Fund would not have been possible without the Finance and Operations team and processes that Kirstin built over the last three years,” shared Kris Hermanns, Chief Impact Officer.

As evidence of Kirstin’s impact at Seattle Foundation, please learn more about our Diverse Manager Policy here.

From all of us at Seattle Foundation – we are wishing you the best as you move into retirement and enjoy time with family, Kirstin! See you on the links!

Since Jan 1, 2021, Alyssa Farber has done an exceptional job serving as Seattle Foundation’s interim CFOO role to ensure a smooth transition to the Foundation’s new Finance and Operations leader, who will be announced publicly in the near future.





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