A Conversation with Jennifer Buffet and Robert F. Sherman

On January 12th, 2012, Jennifer Buffet, President and Co-Chair of the NoVo Foundation, and Robert F. Sherman, Director of NoVo’s Initiative for Social and Emotional Learning, participated in a luncheon program co-hosted by New York Philanthropic Advisors Network (NYPAN) and Philanthropy New York (PNY). Buff Kavelman, a NYPAN Board Member, moderated the discussion, which provided an inside view of the foundation’s new initiatives, partnerships and strategies to an enthusiastic audience of over 100 philanthropic professionals.

Jennifer and Robert shared individual experiences related to the evolution of their work in philanthropy, which led to the development of two top NoVo priorities: the advancement of girls and women worldwide; and the new initiative promoting social and emotional learning in schools across the country. Luncheon guests found it especially useful to hear how Jennifer and Robert’s collaboration developed and how they created effective partnerships with funders, educators and non-profit leaders.

Jennifer oversees NoVo’s day-to-day efforts to actualize its vision by transforming social attitudes, relationships and institutions that perpetuate injustice. She and her husband, Peter, received the Clinton Global Citizen Award for their visionary leadership, and Barron’s has ranked them among the top 25 most effective philanthropists.

Prior to joining NoVo, Robert served as Mercy Corps’ Executive Director of the Action Center to End World Hunger. He founded the national Effective Citizenry program at the Surdna Foundation, and held several leadership positions in the New York City Government.