Knight Foundation Appoints Sam Gill as Vice President for Communities and Impact

Monday, May 15, 2017

Sam Gill has been named vice president for communities and impact of the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, expanding his leadership role within the foundation.

Announcing the appointment, Knight Foundation President Alberto Ibargüen said, “Sam has shown extraordinary leadership and intellectual discipline in his work at Knight. He has helped shape our strategic direction, as well as the way we learn, measure our impact and continuously adapt.”

Gill has served as interim vice president for community and national initiatives since January 2017. He joined Knight in 2015 as vice president for learning and impact and led the foundation through a scenario planning process and the development of a new statement of strategy in 2016. He will head the foundation’s Community and National Initiatives program and its Learning and Impact program, and he will continue to serve as senior adviser to the president. The appointment takes effect immediately.

“Informed and engaged communities are the foundation of a healthy democracy,” said Gill. “Our goal is to support Knight communities across the country as they embrace the challenges of the 21st century.”

Knight’s Community and National Initiatives program helps cities attract talent, expand opportunity and promote civic engagement. The foundation has resident program directors in eight cities, and works through community foundations in 18 other communities.

Before joining Knight, Gill served as vice president of Freedman Consulting, where he provided leadership for many of the firm’s projects, including strategic planning and evaluation, as well as campaign and initiative management. He has led or participated in projects for elected officials and candidates for office, Fortune 500 companies and some of America’s leading foundations. At Freedman, he co-founded Next Century Cities, the nation’s largest coalition of cities and elected officials dedicated to investing in and championing next-generation internet networks.

Gill earned a Bachelor of Arts with honors from the University of Chicago and a Master of Philosophy in politics from the University of Oxford, England, where he was a Rhodes Scholar. He serves on the board of the Phillip and Patricia Frost Museum of Science in Miami.

About the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation

Knight Foundation is a national foundation with strong local roots. We invest in journalism, in the arts, the uses of digital technology in the delivery of news and information, and in the success of cities where brothers John S. and James L. Knight once published newspapers. Our goal is to foster informed and engaged communities, which we believe are essential for a healthy democracy. For more, visit

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