Minnesota Philanthropy Partners has named Eric J. Jolly, Ph.D., as its next president and chief executive officer.
Jolly currently is president and CEO of the Science Museum of Minnesota. He will succeed Carleen Rhodes in August, leading The Saint Paul Foundation, Minnesota Community Foundation, F. R. Bigelow Foundation and Mardag Foundation.
The board conducted a nationwide search for an experienced and collaborative leader to help a committed board and team address complex community issues by strategically using the resources of our network, according to the press release announcing Jolly’s appointment. “This important leadership role attracted a highly qualified slate of candidates from across the country. Dr. Jolly’s range of experience in organizational and philanthropic leadership, as well as in education and community engagement, stood out among the candidates,” the Foundation said.
Jolly, a champion for diversity, will be expected to steward the organization’s Strategic Framework to advance racial equity in Minnesota.
Jolly is credited with helping make science accessible to more people by transforming the Science Museum into one of the most innovative and financially healthy research and science museums in the country.
Jolly earned his Ph.D. in psychology from the University of Oklahoma in 1984. He served in successive academic-leadership roles, including assistant chancellor and director for Affirmative Action and Diversity at the University of Nebraska.
He entered the private sector in 1995, serving as vice president and senior scientist at the Education Development Center in Massachusetts. He moved to the Twin Cities in 2004 to take the top job at the Science Museum.