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Rebeccah Sanders is Senior Vice President of States at the National Audubon Society. In this role, she is accountable for maximizing the impact of Audubon’s 22 state and regional field offices, including the organization’s centers and sanctuaries throughout the country. Collectively these assets comprise half of Audubon’s financial portfolio.
Sanders works closely with the Chief Conservation Officer in the coordination, integration, and execution of Audubon’s cross cutting conservation strategies—climate, coasts, water, working lands and bird-friendly communities. Responsible for overall field operations, Sanders also partners closely with the Chief Operations Officer to coordinate services for the field.
Sanders joined Audubon in late 2013 in the role of Executive Director for Audubon Chicago Region. Over the course of a few years, she extended the reach of the office across five states – creating Audubon’s first Great Lakes field office and increasing annual revenue ten-fold. During her tenure at Audubon, Sanders has also served as Vice President of the Upper Mississippi Flyway and Senior Advisory to the Chief Conservation Office, where she provided guidance on many of Audubon’s national conservation and fundraising priorities.
Prior to joining Audubon, Sanders served as the first executive director of the Chicago Cultural Alliance, a consortium of many of Chicago’s heritage based community organizations and major cultural institutions. She grew the organization from a nascent start-up of 23 organizations to a vibrant coalition of 50 organizations that leveraged community voices for cultural change, addressing a broad set of civic issues such as climate change, immigration, and community planning.
Sanders has served in leadership roles across the non-profit, public, and university sectors; her career has been focused on start-up and turn-around organizations. She has served as a Cultural Commissioner for Chicago’s tourism agency and on numerous civic and cultural organizational committees and boards including the Chinese-American Museum of Chicago, Chicago’s Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events, Chicago’s Office of New Americans, the Loyola Univeristy Museum of Art, and Cook County Forest Preserves Next Century Steering Committee. She received her undergraduate degrees from the University of Notre Dame and her graduate degree from the University of Georgia. She also has taken coursework at American University’s Washington School of Law. Rebeccah is a Fulbright Scholar and was awarded an Emerging Leader Fellowship from The Chicago Community Trust. She has lived and worked in Israel, Italy, and Puerto Rico.