William White, CEO of the Mott Foundation, has announced his immediate retirement as CEO of the foundation and the selection of Ridgway White as his successor. 

After over 50 years of working at the Mott Foundation he will step down as Chief Executive Officer, with the President of the foundation, Ridgway White, replacing him and keeping his current position too. Ridgway White has been at the Mott Foundation since 2002 and has played a leading role in the foundations activities in recent years, leading their response to the Flint water crisis and becoming President of the foundation in 2015.

William White, a long time supporter of the EFC and a member of the Governing Council for many years, will remain as Chairman of the Board of Trustees at the Mott Foundation for the foreseeable future to continue supporting the foundation’s activities and the transition of Ridgway to CEO.

Mr White received the first ever EFC Compass Prize for his unending commitment to building the philanthropic infrastructure in Europe, particularly through the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation’s work in Central and Eastern Europe following the fall of the Berlin Wall. Indeed, in his acceptance speech he reflected on the walls — real and imagined — that can separate people, and the important role philanthropy can play in bridging those divides and creating a more civil society.
Since the its founding in 1989, the Mott Foundation has been a consistent and generous supporter to the EFC in terms of financial contributions but also in terms of time and ideas. The Charles Stewart Mott Foundation, under Mr White’s direction, has certainly left an indelible impact across the foundation sector in Europe through their long-term programming, strategic funding and moral support. The EFC, like many other institutions, wouldn’t be the organisation it is today without this thoughtful leadership.

“During the EFC’s 20th anniversary celebrations, held in Berlin in November 2009, Bill said that “the EFC is like a great airport or railroad switchyard: many people and ideas will flow into it.” Well if it is a switchyard, then there have been few more important trains passing through it than him. His generosity, belief and vision have helped strengthen the EFC’s past, present and future.” Gerry Salole


Mr White endorsed Ridgway’s appointment saying “I’m proud to watch Ridgway contributing to the sector and leading the Mott Foundation. I’m also pleased to say I believe C.S. Mott would recognize today’s Foundation and the work we’re doing as his own. We’ve maintained a focus on our donor’s intent, even as we’ve evolved to remain relevant.”