MoAD | Executive Director

PROFILE: Deborah Santana, Interim Executive Director, Museum of the African Diaspora

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Interim Executive Director, Deborah Santana, is an author, philanthropist, advocate for peace and social justice, and mother of three extremely loved children. She is Vice Chair of the Board of Directors for MoAD, and began her service to the museum in 2005 as a member of the Board. After two years, she took a leave of absence, and returned in 2011.

From 1994 – 2007, Ms. Santana worked as COO of her family’s business, Santana Management. In 1998 she co-founded the Milagro Foundation and served until 2007 as Vice President of the non-profit that serves children in the areas of health, education and art.

Ms. Santana founded Do A Little, a donor-advised fund at the San Francisco Foundation in 2008 that supports women and girls in the areas of health, education and happiness. She has received many awards, supports varied organizations, and has traveled widely, valuing those she has had the good fortune to work with on the journey, including Artists for a New South Africa, Marian Wright Edelman and the Children’s Defense Fund, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Global Fund for Women, and the Daraja Academy in Kenya.

Her first memoir, Space Between The Stars: My Journey to an Open Heart, was published by Random House in March 2005.

Ms. Santana believes life is to be lived with integrity, compassion and love.

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Updated July 2013