A Message from the Board Chair
04 Jan 2020
Foundation Beyond Belief (FBB) has undergone some momentous changes in the past few years. As we celebrate our 10th anniversary and look to the future of the organization and its humanistic principles, we continue to adapt and expand our leadership, staff, and programs.
Moving forward, we continue to engage in a thoughtful strategic planning process to ensure that the organization is strong and sustainable and that our work aligns with our mission. This deliberate process has led to some key changes that will impact the course of FBB’s future. I’d like to share those exciting changes with you today.
Since Dale McGowan founded FBB more than ten years ago, FBB has grown into a robust, effective organization that mobilizes humanist philanthropy. Dale decided to return to academia after his board term ended this fall, and his level-headed, compassionate perspective will be missed—but we’re excited about growing the vision he helped craft. Please join us in thanking Dale for his amazing contributions to FBB and wishing him the best with his pursuits.
Noelle George became President. In 2011, Noelle George joined FBB as a volunteer and since then has played many different roles. In 2015, she became Executive Director and was instrumental in bringing about the amazing growth we have experienced in recent years. Noelle is much more than a competent manager. She has proven herself to be a visionary, one deserving of a title that more accurately reflects her contributions. So, I’m pleased to announce that Noelle is now President of FBB. (This change has also meant that my title has been updated to Board Chair).
Our staff expanded. You’ve probably noticed an increase in our activities on social media. Or maybe you’ve read in our newsletters how we’ve expanded our outreach with more robust programs. This has all been made possible by our ability to increase our staff, thanks to your generous financial support. Because of you, we’re building new partnerships that will expand our reach. We’ll be able to respond to more natural disasters and humanitarian crises—getting more resources to where they’re most needed. And we’re getting the word out to an ever-increasing audience about the power of humanist philanthropy.
We added new board members. As we strive to build an expert board with the diversity reflective of the humanist community at-large as well as the broad range of skills needed to refine and implement our vision, we are thrilled to announce three new board members this year:
Alice Ashton is a humanist retired from the United States Navy—and was one of only about 1,400 transgender service members serving openly under the current regulations. Alice has a substantial history of leadership and task management in her military career and her extensive volunteer work.
Alix Jules is an advocate for social impact and applying innovation for positive human change. He’s authored numerous articles and blogs on inequality, reform, educating and raising children, and sustainable communities—and has been featured in high-profile media including Ebony and Time Magazine. Alix also co-founded The Fellowship of Freethought, the largest humanist group in Texas.
Phil Session is the volunteer coordinator for the Freethinkers Association of Central Texas and serves as its acting Vice-president. He is also the head organizer/coordinator for Austin Atheists Helping the Homeless and is on the board of Recovering from Religion. Phil has held numerous other creative and leadership positions within the humanist movement.
As always, we welcome your input or questions you might have. And I look forward to keeping you informed as we continue to refine our vision and expand the reach of compassionate humanism.
Thanks for helping us build a more humanist world!
Chair of the Board
P.S. If you’re excited about the future of FBB and the increasingly powerful impact we have as more and more humanists join together in philanthropy and service, I hope you’ll consider becoming a Monthly Donor. Our monthly donors help ensure we are always able to bring relief wherever the need is greatest.