James S. McDonnell Foundation Announces Leadership Changes

President John T. Bruer to retire at year’s end; Susan M. Fitzpatrick named President beginning 2015

(Posted 2014-10-20) The Board of Directors of the James S. McDonnell Foundation (JSMF) announced that the Foundation’s esteemed President John T. Bruer, Ph.D. will retire effective Dec 31, 2014. The Directors named Susan M. Fitzpatrick, Ph.D, currently serving as the Foundation’s Vice President, as the next President effective January 1, 2015. Founded in 1950, JSMF supports scientific research and scholarship through foundation-initiated programs; the history and activities of JSMF are described on its website www.jsmf.org.

Bruer, a noted philosopher of science, is internationally recognized for his contributions to cognition and education. In accepting his retirement the Board praised his 30 years of thoughtful and inspired leadership at JSMF. During his tenure, Bruer initiated JSMF funding programs in cognition and education, cognitive neuroscience, and international health universally acknowledged as exemplars of effective philanthropic investment. While President at JSMF, Bruer authored several books including the Grawemeyer Prize winning Schools for Thought and The Myth of the First Three Years along with scores of scholarly articles and presentations. Post-retirement, Bruer will serve as an advisor to the JSMF Officers and Directors. Biographical information about Bruer is available at https://www.jsmf.org/about/john-bruer.htm.

Fitzpatrick, a respected biochemist and neuroscientist, will continue to develop JSMF’s programs supporting research on brain function in health and disease and in applications of mathematics and complex systems science to important scientific questions (https://www.jsmf.org/about/susan-fitzpatrick.htm). Fitzpatrick will work with the Board of Directors in exploring new philanthropic opportunities in keeping with the Foundation’s interests and traditions.

A symposium celebrating Bruer’s tenure as JSMF President is planned for Spring 2015.