Potts Family Foundation Names New CEO

OKLAHOMA CITY – The Potts Family Foundation has named Craig Knutson as its new president and chief executive officer. Knutson will assume duties on June 1. Pat Potts, the foundation’s current executive, will retire on July 31 after more than 15 years overseeing the foundation.

Phyllis Hudecki, the foundation’s board chair, called Knutson’s appointment a natural match for the organization.

“Craig has helped the Potts Family Foundation with a number of projects over the past year, especially with our work reaching both policy makers and business leaders to educate them on early childhood issues,” Hudecki said. “He has a long background in civic leadership, nonprofit volunteerism and the corporate world. Moving forward, the foundation can continue its successful measures to change lives in Oklahoma.”

Pat Potts echoed Hudecki’s statements, calling Knutson a friend to the government, corporate and nonprofit worlds.

“His expertise as an economist, policy expert, nonprofit volunteer and business leader are a perfect fit for the foundation,” Potts said. “We are thrilled that Craig can continue the vital work of the foundation in nonprofit capacity building, early childhood education and advocacy.”

Potts and Knutson will overlap for two months during the leadership transition. Potts plans to focus her efforts on continued legislative advocacy for early childhood education and the work of the Funders’ Roundtable of Central Oklahoma after her retirement from the foundation.

Knutson is currently principal and president of Growing Global, LLC. Prior he served as chief of staff to the president of Oklahoma City University. He also held executive positions with the Oklahoma Insurance Department, United Way of Central Oklahoma and Southwestern Bell Telephone/SBC. Knutson is a past chairman/president of the American Heart Association – South OKC Division, Community Council of Central Oklahoma, Greater OKC Port Authority (Foreign Trade Zone 106), Junior Achievement of Greater OKC, Oklahoma Council on Economic Education, Oklahoma Recycling Association, South OKC Chamber of Commerce, Travelers’ Aid Society of Oklahoma and vice president of the Potts Family Foundation. He will become chair of the Oklahoma Center for Nonprofits in July 2018.

Knutson holds bachelors and master’s degrees from the University of Oklahoma. He resides in Norman with his wife Julie, president and chief executive officer of the Oklahoma Academy for State Goals.

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The Potts Family Foundation provides support for sustainable early childhood initiatives and nonprofit capacity building. The foundation grew out of the Community Development Resource Foundation in 2000 as a supporting nonprofit. In 2015, it reorganized as a private foundation. In addition to supporting nonprofit capacity building as an underwriter for the programs of the Oklahoma Center for Nonprofits, the foundation also directs the 25 by 25 Initiative to ensure the well-being of young children.

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