Gail Snowden announces plans to retire from the Boston Foundation

April 25, 2007

Boston – The Boston Foundation has announced that Gail Snowden, Vice President for Finance and Operation at the Foundation since 2004, will retire in September. Hope Groves, former Senior Director for Finance and Controller and a long-time Foundation staff member, has been named Chief Financial Officer. Snowden’s new title is Vice President of Administrative Services.

Snowden is a veteran of the banking industry and has been nationally recognized as a leader in urban community development. She joined the senior management staff of the Boston Foundation after retiring from a long and successful career, which included her most recent position as Executive Vice President for Bank of America, where she was responsible for strategy development and oversight of 60-plus strategic alliances and partnerships. She is also a former President of the FleetBoston Financial Foundation.

“Gail brought to the Foundation an incomparable record of accomplishment in the corporate and civic spheres,” said Paul S. Grogan, President and CEO of the Boston Foundation. “Personally and in her career, she represents a deep commitment to a progressive and inclusive civic culture. We are all grateful for her vision and for her many contributions to this organization, both as a board member and then as part of our senior management team.”

Snowden had a long personal connection to the Foundation, which she joined as a member of the Board of Directors in 2002. In that role, she took a place that had earlier been occupied by her mother, Muriel Snowden, a celebrated community advocate and leader who with her husband, Otto Snowden, founded Freedom House in 1949. That community center continues to serve the city of Boston and the region as a center for advancing cultural and racial interaction. Gail Snowden currently serves Freedom House as an emeritus chair of its Board of Directors.

When she retired from her banking career, Grogan recruited her to join the Foundation staff, whereupon she stepped down from the Board of Directors.

Snowden began her career at the Bank of Boston in 1968, serving in a wide range of roles through the many mergers that transformed the banking industry over the past four decades. She has been widely recognized for her innovative achievements bringing financial services to those most in need, with an emphasis on community investment. Major honors include the White House Ron Brown Award for advocating for the needs of minority and low income constituents.

Snowden has been a frequent member of lists that identify leaders and achievers, including Top Business and Professional Women by Dollars and Sense magazine; and the region’s 100 most influential women by Boston magazine. Ebony Magazine named her one of 50 African-American Women at the top in corporate America. She has received numerous honorary doctorates, including one from Simmons College, where she earned an MBA. She is also a graduate of Harvard/Radcliffe College.

“While I am excited about the next chapter of my life, this change represents a major milestone for me,” said Snowden. “It has been an honor and a unique opportunity to be able to have a personal role in an institution with the history and impact of the Boston Foundation. I am especially delighted to be able to hand over the role of Chief Financial Officer to Hope Groves, who brings impeccable professional skills to this position.”


The Boston Foundation, Greater Boston’s community foundation, is one of the oldest and largest community foundations in the nation, with assets of over $830 million.  In 2006, the Foundation and its donors made more than $70 million in grants to nonprofit organizations and received gifts of $71 million.  The Foundation is made up of some 850 separate charitable funds established by donors either for the general benefit of the community or for special purposes.  The Boston Foundation also serves as a major civic leader, provider of information, convener, and sponsor of special initiatives designed to address the community’s and region’s most pressing challenges.  For more information about the Boston Foundation, visit or call 617-338-1700.