The Portage Foundation Board of Trustees has named Janice Simmons-Mortimer as Executive Director to lead the community foundation. Simmons-Mortimer will transition from her role as Outreach Manager for the foundation to begin her new leadership role on September 1, 2023.
“As a resident of Portage County, I see the many great things that are currently happening to make our area stronger as well as the challenges still to overcome. I am excited to lead such a wonderful community foundation that has a legacy of service and a desire to positively impact our local area,” said Simmons-Mortimer.
In her role as Outreach Manager, Simmons-Mortimer has developed strong ties between the foundation and the community through facilitation of non-profit workshops and conferences, improvements to fundholder communications and donation management, and streamlining processes for scholarships and grants.
“In the 18 months that Janice has been with the Portage Foundation, her work has been instrumental in the organization’s transition and growth. We are pleased to be able to continue to build upon the strong performance that our current team has accomplished. With Janice, the Board has found a local leader who is passionate for the community and a champion for the programs that help area residents to reach their fullest potential,” said Debbie Smeiles, President of the Portage Foundation Board of Trustees.
As a resident of Hiram Township since 2011, Simmons-Mortimer has been active within the community and has served in leadership roles within several local nonprofit organizations. Simmons-Mortimer replaces Scott Taylor, who was recently named Chief Executive Officer of the International Soap Box Derby in Akron, Ohio.
Since its creation 25 years ago, the Portage Foundation’s mission has been to build a thriving and dynamic community for Portage County and the region. Over the ensuing years, the foundation was successful in building endowments and encouraging philanthropy, growing to over $6.5 million under management, with over $100,000 in grants and scholarships awarded annually.