"Alta Starr previously served as a Program Officer at the Ford Foundation with responsibility for managing the US Civil Society portfolio in the Governance and Civil Society Unit. This portfolio focuses on strengthening civil society as a force for advancing social justice and deepening democracy. The portfolio focuses on two primary strategies: increasing civic partnership in underserved communities through strengthening community organizing, and building sustainable civic leadership for social justice. Prior to working at the Ford Foundation, Ms. Starr was a Senior Program Officer at the New World Foundation in New York, which she joined in 1988. Much of her responsibility there focused on the Deep South and Appalachia, and she also worked on developing programs to strengthen capacity and leadership among non-profit groups, build up the role of state-based civil society coalitions, and link community organizing to the achievement of concrete social justice goals. Prior to joining the New World Foundation, Ms. Starr worked as an Associate Producer for Public Interest Radio in New York, and as Executive Director of the Weston-METCO Public School Program in Massachusetts. She is currently a member of the Seasons Fund for Social Transformation. Past Board memberships have included the Progressive Technology Project and the Needmor Fund, and she has served as an advisor to the Open Society Institute’s Southern Initiative and the Southern Partners Fund."