Citizen Schools Announces Two New Members of its National Board of Directors

Citizen Schools today is naming Gerry McGraw, Chief Financial Officer of Fidelity Investments, and Laura DeBonis, an independent consultant, to its National Board of Directors.  Citizen Schools is a national non-profit that partners with middle schools in six states to provide an expanded learning day for students in low income communities to help bridge the opportunity gap which exists between their more affluent peers and them. “Gerry will be a tremendous addition to our board given his background and commitment to education and service. His deep understanding of financial management and strategic planning will be invaluable to the board,” said Larry Summers, chairman of Citizen Schools National Board of Directors. “Laura has great experience in the technology sector and has been a long time champion of Citizen Schools’ mission and a key supporter of our growth.  She will bring a wealth of digital knowledge to our organization and board,” he continued.

McGraw has spent the past 20 years in senior leadership roles at Fidelity.  He became the CFO and head of Finance and Brokerage Operations in April 2016 after serving for nearly seven years as President of Fidelity Institutional, which provides products, services and technology to financial intermediaries.  McGraw is a champion for Fidelity’s strong partnership with Citizen Schools, through which approximately 150 Fidelity employees volunteer annually to teach apprenticeships to middle school students across the states Citizen Schools serves.  A graduate of Pace University, McGraw previously worked for Smith Barney and Shearson Lehman Brothers.

“I have seen firsthand the impact Fidelity employees have been able to make volunteering with Citizen Schools in so many classrooms in low-income areas of the country,” said McGraw. “It is my goal to ensure Citizen Schools continues to help middle school students thrive as well as contribute to the growth of this impressive organization.”

In the past, DeBonis has served on the Boston Public Library Board of Trustees and was appointed by President Obama to the National Archives’ Public Interest Declassification Board in 2015, where she co-chairs the Technology Working Group.  She has previously worked at Google as Director of Book Search Library Partnerships and also as a consultant to EF Education First. She is a graduate of Harvard College and has a MBA from Harvard Business School.

“I have been aware of the great work Citizen Schools has been doing around the country for many years now,” said DeBonis. “It will be an honor to work with an organization that is helping so many of our nation’s middle school students go on to achieve academic success in high school and beyond.”

“We are so pleased to welcome both Laura and Gerry to our Board of Directors,” said Emily McCann, CEO of Citizen Schools.  “Laura understands the importance of this moment in Citizen Schools’ history; her experience will be invaluable to our organization. Gerry’s financial background will make him an integral part of the growth of Citizen Schools. Each of these individuals has demonstrated a keen understanding of our mission to close the opportunity and achievement gaps impacting so many inner-city middle school students.”

Press Opportunity:

Jpeg photographs of McGraw and DeBonis are available upon request.

Media Contact:

Darcie Fisher Ellis Strategies, Inc. | 774-281-3506

About Citizen Schools

Citizen Schools is a national nonprofit organization that partners with middle schools to expand the learning day for children in low-income communities. Citizen Schools mobilizes a team of AmeriCorps educators and volunteer “Citizen Teachers” to teach real-world learning projects and provide academic support in order to help all students discover and achieve their dreams. For more information, please visit ###